A Hindu priest has been killed and a devotee injured at a temple in northern Bangladesh on Sunday. Hindus are the religious minority in the country.
This is the third attack in the last five months on Christian and Hindu priests in Bangladesh, reported The Hindu. The local police reported that it took place in Debigonj of Panchagarh district. A 50-year-old Hindu priest of Sri Sri Shantu Santo Gaurio monastery, Jogeshwar Dasa Dhikari, was stabbed to death by unidentified people.
According to the police, the incident occurred while the priest was preparing for morning prayers. The attackers attacked the temple first and then killed the priest. Another man, Gopal Chandra Roy, came to save the priest and got injured as the assailant shot him, too.
Panchagarh district police chief Giasuddin Ahmed said that the Hindu priest was attacked by two persons. The assailants came on a motorcycle and attacked the temple with grenades and also fired bullets. They slit the priest’s throat and fled.
Police official Humayun Kabir said that they have arrested four people who are members of the Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh. He rejected the claim of ISIS which was issued in Telegram messaging app and Twitter.
The declaration by ISIS stated, “One of his companions was hurt after being targeted with light weapons in the area of Panchagar in Northern Bangladesh, and the Mujahideen returned to their positions unharmed, and all praise be to God.”
Even so, Recently, 27 Bangladeshi workers had been arrested in Singapore. The workers allegedly supported Islamist groups including ISIS and Al Qaeda. The government repeatedly denies that ISIS has a presence in the country and also said that the earlier attacks were accomplished by home-grown Islamist militants, as reported by The Guardian.
Monirul Islam, joint commissioner of the Bangladesh Police said that Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh has been involved in the attacks on these minority groups. He said, “This group is responsible for most of the attacks on Shiite mosques, Hindu temples, churches and religious leaders across Bangladesh since October.”
Attacks on priests of minority religious groups are not new in Bangladesh. According to CNN a Christian pastor was assaulted in October last year and in November another Italian Catholic priest was attacked. However, both man survived the attacks. A Shiite mosque was also attacked in Bogra, northern Bangladesh. Since 2013, 6 secular writers and bloggers have been killed in the country.