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10 injured in blasts at Hindu temple in Bangladesh

At least six people were injured, with three in a critical condition, after a series of bomb blasts on Saturday at a Hindu religious gathering in northern Bangladesh, a police official said.

world Updated: Dec 05, 2015 20:35 IST
At least 10 people were injured, with three in a critical condition, after a series of bomb blasts on Saturday at a Hindu religious gathering in northern Bangladesh, a police official said.
At least 10 people were injured, with three in a critical condition, after a series of bomb blasts on Saturday at a Hindu religious gathering in northern Bangladesh, a police official said.(Representative image)

At least ten people were injured at a Hindu temple in Bangladesh on Saturday when a group of unidentified assailants threw homemade bombs.

At least three petrol bombs were hurled at a large group of people who were at the open-air theatre of the Kantaji Mandir.

Hundreds of people had gathered at the 17th century temple in Dinajpur district, northern Bangladesh, for an annual fair called Rashmela.

Six of the injured were being treated at Dinajpur Medical College and Hospital and four others sustained less serious injuries, the district’s Superintendent of Police, Ruhul Amin.

Though no group immediately claimed responsibility for the explosions at the popular tourist attraction, the police have detained at least five people for questioning.

Mizanur Rahman, another senior police official, said investigators were trying to determine the motive for the attack.

The incident comes amid concern that religious extremism in Bangladesh is rising after a series of attacks have left four secular bloggers, two foreigners and a publisher dead this year.

Christian priests and the media have been threatened with dire consequences if they continue to employ women.

While local radical groups, including Ansarullah Bangla Team have claimed responsibility for some of the previous attacks, the Sunni-radical group Islamic State has said its supporters slayed the Italian aid worker and Japanese agriculture researcher.

The group has also claimed responsibility for two separate attacks on Shia Muslims in the country. The Islamic State group’s claims could not be independently verified.

The government of prime minister Sheikh Hasina has repeatedly denied any organisational presence of the Islamic State in Bangladesh.

The government blames the country’s main opposition party for the attacks, which it says are a way for the Bangladesh Nationalist Party and Jamaat-e-Islami party to create chaos and derail the ongoing crimes trial in the 1971 war of independence.