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Saturday, September 8, 2007

Jamaat men booked for storming temple in Bangladesh

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Report: Earth

Posted : Sat, 08 Sep 2007 05:35:05 GMT
Author : IANS

Dhaka, Sep 8 - Ten members of a local unit of Jamaat-e-Islami have been booked in Pabna district in northern Bangladesh for storming a Hindu temple, damaging property and threatening devotees gathered to celebrate 'Janmashtami', Lord Krishna's birthday.
There is tension in the area and more police reinforcement has been rushed, The Daily Star newspaper said Saturday.
One of the activists has been arrested and the police are looking for nine more at Bera Pora in Santhia upzila (sub-district) for the incident that took place Wednesday, following a complaint lodged by Pradip Kumar De, President of the Siddheshwari Puja Mandir Committee.
'Armed with sticks and sharp weapons, they stormed the Mandir and threatened us to stop the three-day programme. They knocked down the shed built for the guests, cut down trees and damaged the rath (deity's ceremonial chariot),' De complained.
He claimed the loss would be around Tk 30,000 ($500).
Locals said there was an old dispute over the land on which Siddheshwari Mandir stands. The suspects who have now been booked had a lease issued in favour of an Islamic seminary - Karamja Dakhil Madrassa. But in response to a petition by the Mandir Committee to rejecting the lease, the High Court has ruled for maintenance of status quo.
Santhia police have arrested Abdul Awal, one of the ten people booked. Sub Inspector Mizan said: 'We are trying our best to arrest the rest of the accused.'
There are 11.3 million Hindus in Bangladesh, forming 10.5 percent of the population, according to the 2001 census.
(c) Indo-Asian News Service

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