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Recent attacks on religious minorities protested
Bangladesh Hindu Bouddha Christian Oikya Parishad - File photo

Recent attacks on religious minorities protested

Dhaka, Feb 16 – Violent attacks on religious minorities in recent days have evoked popular protests at home and abroad. The situation of minorities in Bangladesh is a human rights issue.
The Bangladesh Hindu-Buddha-Christian Oikya Parishad has called upon leaders of the political parties to remain alert and stop repressions on religious and ethnic minorities. They revealed a report that shows Incidents of violence against religious minority communities in the country came down in the last three years, but murder and rape saw an uptick.
According to a recent non-government report in 2016, the minority communities faced at least 1,471 incidents of violence, including murder, rape and assault. In 2017, the total instances of violence were 1,004. But, Last year it came down to 806.
However, the numbers of murder and rape have increased. Last year, more than 90 minorities were killed, which was 71 in 2016. Some 48-rape incidents, including 16 gang rapes took place last year, which
were 32 in 2016.
Leaders of Bangladesh Hindu-Buddha-Christian Oikya Parishad said they prepared the report based on news published in different national dailies and information provided by their activists.
According to the report, the number of assaults, grabbing of property whether house or land, death threats, extortion and idol vandalism declined in the last three years.
At least 875 people of the minority communities faced physical attack in 2016, but the number came down to almost half as 447 last year.
The organization’s General Secretary Advocate Rana Dasgupta said the decline of violence does not indicate that the minorities in the country are in a good situation.
“It is a temporary improvement. We cannot be sure how long it will sustain. We are expecting such improvement will continue for a long time,” said Rana.
Rana Gupta said, “After the December 30 national election, ethnic minorities faced attacks at Sonagazi in Feni, Thakurgaon Sadar, Longdu of Rangamati and in some areas of Chattogram Hill Tract.
In 2018, the minorities also faced attacks, their houses, business shops were burnet and the women, and children of minorities faced rapes at places, Rana added.
At the press conference, minority leaders pointed out that improvement of law and order situation and the government’s special attention on minorities worked as the key factors to reduce the incidents. They said more than 1,158 families lost their property due to illegal grabbing in 2016, but only 122 families faced such violence last year. – GW News Desk