Hindu priest murdered in Bangladesh
In Bangladesh, a Hindu priest has been hacked to death this morning in Jhenaidah, Khulna Division in the southwesten part of the country.
The 65-year old priest, Ananta Kumar Ganguly was on his way to Mohishanagar on bicycle to perform his ritual puja, when assailants attacked him. Locals found his throat-slit body and informed the police. Police said, the manner of murder bears the hall-mark of previous killings by militants.
The victim, they said, a priest serving in the Noldanga temple for the last several years, had deep hacking wounds on his neck. The brutal killing of a minority member comes just 2 days after the hacking to death in similar manner of a Christian grocer in Natore district in Rajashahi, northwestern Bangladesh on Sunday. Sunday had also seen the brutal killing of the wife of a senior police officer in Chittagong.
The police officer had raided the dens of banned militant outfit, JMB (Jamat-atul Muhjahideen Bangladesh) in the port city. Today’s killing has surprised many as traditionally violence is abhorred during the holy month of Ramadan, which has begun today. Bangladesh, a secular Muslim majority country, has seen a wave of attacks and violent killings by radical Islamist elements since early last year.
Since the beginning of this year, 15 people including members of minority community, free-thinking bloggers, on-line rights activists, etc have been killed by militants in a trademark brutal manner using sharp weapons. IS has claimed responsibility for most of the killings, but the Bangladesh government has denied any IS presence in the country.
Law enforcers say there is evidence pointing to involvement of local militant outfits like JMB and Ansarullah Bangla Team, Bangladesh branch of Al-Qaeda in the Indian sub-continent. In the face of strong international pressure to bring the culprits to book, both Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Foreign Minister Mahmood Ali have blamed the Jamaat-e-Islami saying the opposition is trying to destabilize the country.