Hindu temple, homes and stores vandalised in Bangladesh amid row over Facebook post – Details

Representational image

Representational image (Photo via Pixabay)

Dhaka: A temple as well as several houses and shops were vandalised last week over a Facebook post. The incident took place in Bangladesh‘s Narail district on Friday evening with the police firing warning shots to disperse the angry mob. They had been provoked by a social media post allegedly belittling Islam.

According to local media reports, the mob had vandalised several homes and torched one house in Sahapara village. The attackers also threw bricks at a temple in the village during the attack around 7:30pm and broke the furniture inside the temple. Several shops were also vandalised.

No attacker has been arrested so far. According to the police the situation is now normal and law enforcers are working to keep the situation under control.

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According to media reports quoting local police inspector Haran Chandra Paul the furore had begun after a young man posted something offensive on Facebook, triggering anger among Muslims. As tension mounted over the post after the Friday prayers, a group of Muslims had demonstrated outside their home in the afternoon. Police have since arrested a 20-year-old college student over the Facebook post.

“After one group looted all our valuables, another group came and found our door open. As there was nothing left to loot, they set our home on fire,” The Daily Star newspaper quoted Deepali Rani Saha, a resident as saying.

Attacks on religious minorities in Muslim-majority Bangladesh have increased in recent days, with many being spurred by rumours or fake posts spread through social media. According to a report by legal rights group Ain O Salish Kendra, 3,679 attacks have been carried out on the Hindu community in Bangladesh between January 2013 and September 2021.

Last year, some Hindu temples in Bangladesh were vandalised by unidentified individuals during Durga Puja celebrations. The government had deployed paramilitary forces in 22 districts after four people were killed and many others injured in riots.