The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) has asked Bangladesh to give adequate protection to the Hindu community in the wake of a series of terror attacks on Hindu temples in the country.
“We have directly called upon the government of Bangladesh to fully investigate these incidents and to protect the lives and properties of the Hindu community,” said Jay Kansara, HAF’s Director of Government Relations, in a statement.
Two separate attacks took place recently within a period of one week, one at the historic Kantaji temple and the second at a gathering of over 2000 people at the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (Iskcon) temple in Kharol region of Dinajpur, which left many devotees injured.
The attackers threw homemade bombs and shot at people who were trying to escape from the place.
On November 30, Iskcon temple priest Birendranath Roy was shot at Ranibandar village of Chirirbandar sub-district in Dinajpur by some unidentified people.
All these attacks have caused panic and created a sense of insecurity among the Hindu community in Bangladesh, said HAF.
“The foundation has also requested the US Ambassador to Bangladesh, Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat and other US officials to visit the site of attacks in order to assure the Hindu minority of Bangladesh that the United States stands with them in their time of need,” Kansara added.
A series of attacks has taken place in the country in recent months targeting the minority community, foreigners and secular bloggers.
Police suspect that the banned Islamic militant group, Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) may have been responsible for the Kantaji temple attack. But still it is not clear that who was behind the Iskcon temple attack.
Bangladesh Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity Council (BHBCUC) had staged protests to condemn the attacks, at Dhaka Press Club and in Dinajpur, last Sunday.
They believe that these attacks are aiming at compelling Hindus to flee away leaving their land and property behind.
“Although Hindus comprise a majority in Dinajpur district, they only account for nine percent of Bangladesh’s total population and have faced widespread violence, discrimination and restrictions on their religious freedom according to the HAF’s annual human rights report,” the organization said.