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HENB | Dhaka | February 22, 2016:: Head priest of Sri Sant Gaudiya Math Srimat Jogeshwar Roy (Yajneshwar Roy) was hacked to death in his Math (monastery) on Sunday morning and two of his disciples were injured, one with gunshot. Fanatic Islamists were attacked the Math in a planned way as divulged.
The attackers were raising slogans, “Allah ho Akbar (Allah is great)” and “Hindu Kaffir Desh char Bharate Ja (Hindu kaffirs leave this country and go to India”. A blood stained meat-cleaver was recovered by the police investigation team from the site of Priest murder. The throat-slit body of the priest was laid in the veranda of the Math in a pool of fresh blood, till the body was recovered by police for sending it for postmortem.
In that connection, Bangladesh police have arrested three local Islamists over the decapitation of a top Hindu priest, the latest attack targeting religious minorities in the Muslim-majority nation, officers said Monday.
The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the attack inside the temple complex on Sunday in the country’s north, but local police said there was no evidence to suggest the jihadist group was involved.
“We’ve arrested three people for interrogation,” said Babul Akhter, police chief of Debiganj area where the attack happened.
Two members of banned militant group Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and an activist with Jamaat-e-Islami, Bangladesh’s largest Islamist political party, were arrested overnight Sunday. Police did not give details of their alleged involvement in the attack.
“The IS group has previously claimed responsibility for attacks on minorities. But we haven’t found any evidence confirming their link. Rather we have found JMB was behind these killings,” Akhter told AFP.
Two unknown men armed with pistols and cleavers attacked Jogeswar Roy as he was arranging prayers at the temple in Debiganj town, some 400 kilometres (250 miles) north of the capital Dhaka, police have said.
Two devotees were also wounded in the attack, including one who was shot as he tried to save the priest, they have said.
US-based monitoring organisation SITE has reported that the IS group said in a statement it is behind the murder. Bangladesh has seen an upsurge in attacks on minorities including Shiites, Sufis, Christians and Ahmadis by Islamist militant groups.
The government rejects the IS group’s claims of responsibility for several of the attacks, including the shootings of two foreigners last year.
As a protest over continuing persecution of minorities in Bangladesh, specifically over the issues of attack on Hindus and Hindu religious places in Bangladesh, thousand of people came to the streets in Dhaka and in different district towns on Monday with banners and slogans.
Bangladesh Puja Udjapon Samity, Hindu-Buddhist-Christian-Unity-Council, some factions of Communist Parties in Bangladesh, even some supporters of Awami League participated in Dhaka protest rally.
Monk members of different Hindu monastery, students, women and people from all sections joined in those rallies with a demand “Stop Persecution on Minorities in Bangladesh”.
Hindus and other minorities in Bangladesh have been demanding a Secular constitution in Bangladesh as it was in 1971, replacing “Allaha ho Akbar” in the constitution and removing Islam as a state religion adopted later under a fundamental hegemony in the country during Military rule under Hossian Muhammad Ershad in 1982.
Campaign Against Atrocities on Minorities in Bangladesh (CAAMB), a Kolkata based organisation working on status of Hindu and other minorities in Bangladesh and the BD refugees in India, has condemned the severe atrocities on minorities in Bangladesh all time high whether it is the rule of BNP or Awami League.
__With input from AFP and Jugasankha.