Hindus in Patgram (Bangladesh) fear fresh attack after upazila polls


MP_0109Hindus in Patgram upazila fear that there may be a fresh attack on them after the upazila elections scheduled to be held on February 27.
Earlier, the bordering areas of the upazila witnessed a spate of attack on Hindus centring the January 5 parliament polls this year.
Many victims on condition of anonymity said they had decided to leave their ancestral home being in fear of fresh attack by the BNP and Jammat-Shibir men.
Ghoshpara Durga Temple president, Manaranjon Chandra Ghosh, 80, said at least 50 Hindu families in Ghoshpara village who suffered most in the attacks on November 28 last year, were in panic.
“Hindus fled their village leaving their homestead and shelters in different areas of the upazila. Many Hindu women of the village are still staying at their relatives’ houses in fear of further attack,” he added.
Fearing fresh attack, they did not arrange any yearly religious function on the premises of Ghoshpara Durga Temple this month, said Satya Narayan Ghosh, another Hindu local.
Sunil Chandra Sen, a Hindu community leader in Shafinagar village, said over 100 Hindu families had been passing their days in panic as they were attacked twice on October 27 in 2013 and January 4 this year.
“The masterminds of the attacks are yet to be arrested which is a major reson for panic and uncertainty ,” he said.
“I don’t know what would happen in future as Jamaat-Shibir men might flex muscles with their ferocious character anytime here following the upazila polls,” said a local trader Majibar Rahman of the town.
Amiruzzaman, officer in-charge of Patgram Police Station said the attackers went into hiding immediately after the incidents and police were trying their best to arrest them.
Police had ensured security of the Hindus and were giving them legal support, he added.
So far 37 cases were lodged with Patgram police station, accusing 750 named and over 2,000 unnamed BNP and Jamaat-Shibir men in the last three months.
Of them, 140 were arrested while the mastermind Shibir leader, Sohel Rana, is still on the run.
Police said seven people, including one Awami League, three BNP and three Shibir men were killed in Patgram town, Kafirbazar and Shafinagar villages in the upazila during the attack.
More than 100 houses and shops were vandalised, looted and torched in Ghoshpara and Shafinagar villages.

Source: The Daily Star