‘Bangladesh is…:’ Sheikh Hasina on recent attacks on Hindu community

Updated on Sep 04, 2022 11:21 AM IST

There have been several media reports about attacks and hostility against the minority Hindu population in Bangladesh. There were also reports of vandalism of Durga Puja pandals or Hindu temples.

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.(ANI file)
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.(ANI file)
By, New Delhi

Ahead of her visit to India, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said countries should show “magnanimity” when asked about incidents of attacks on the Hindu community in her country, asserting that Bangladesh is a secular country and her government takes immediate action when such incidents take place.

"I think that both the country should show their magnanimity and our part, you know Bangladesh is a secular country and we have many religions here. And the religious harmony is here, very much. So one or two incidents when it takes place immediately... especially my party... my party people, they are very much, conscious about it and also my government. We immediately take action," Hasina told news agency ANI.

There have been several media reports about attacks and hostility against the minority Hindu population in Bangladesh. There were also reports of vandalism of Durga Puja pandals or Hindu temples.

Hasina said her government strongly supports secularism and any attempts to disturb communal harmony are immediately dealt with.

Also Read | Sheikh Hasina recounts horrors of family's massacre; lived secretly in Delhi

Hasina also contended that extremism was not limited to her country as many countries, including India, were witnessing it.

"As long as we are in power, we always give importance to that and I always tell them (the minority) that you are our citizens. You should own our country. But some incidents sometimes take place but immediately we take action. It is sometimes, it happened, it's very unwanted situation but you know very well it is not only Bangladesh, even India also sometimes minorities suffered," she said.

Hasina will come to India for a State visit from September 5 to September 8. During her visit, Hasina will call on President Droupadi Murmu and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankar and hold bilateral consultations with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the MEA said. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will call on the prime minister. She is also likely to visit Ajmer.

Attacks on Hindu community in Bangladesh

In July, many organisations across Bangladesh held protests against the attack on the Hindu community in the country. There were reports of the killing of Hindu teachers and rape of Hindu women in Bangladesh.

Also Read | PM Sheikh Hasina to Hindu community in Bangladesh: You and I have same rights

On July 15, homes of Hindu minorities were set on fire in the Sahapara area of Lohagara, Narail. The mobs started setting houses on fire after Friday prayers, saying that an 18-year-old man from the neighbourhood hurt their religious feelings on Facebook.

Hindu population in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh, Hindus now comprise less than nine per cent of the total population. The census numbers have shown a marked reduction in the Hindu population over the past four decades, as per the report citing government data. It shows that over the course of the last 40 years, the percentage of the Hindu population of Bangladesh declined from 13.5 per cent to 8.5 per cent.

(With inputs from ANI)

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