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Over a thousand communal crimes, at least 1,004 attacks on minorities in Bangladesh in 2017

Wednesday 10 January 2018, by siawi3

Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/2018/01/08/communal-violence-came-little-2017/

‘Communal violence fell in 2017, but murder on the rise’

by Kamrul Hasan

Published at 01:59 PM January 08, 2018
Last updated at 01:17 AM January 09, 2018

There were at least 1,004 attacks on minorities in 2017

‘Communal violence fell in 2017, but murder on the rise’
Photo: There were at least 1,471 attacks on minorities in 2016Rajib Dhar/Dhaka Tribune

Incidents of violence targeting religious and ethnic minorities in Bangladesh fell by one-third in 2017 but there was a slight rise in the number of murders, a report from a human rights organization has revealed.

Bangladesh Hindu-Buddha-Christian Oikya Parishad said at a press briefing in Dhaka on Monday that there were at least 1,004 attacks on the country’s minorities in 2017 compared to at least 1,471 the year before.

In addition, the number of people from minorities punished for fabricated allegations of spreading religious hatred increased, from seven in 2016 to at least 13 in 2017.

The organization produced the figures after analyzing news reports.

“Incidents of communal violence came down a little in 2017 but there were still more than 1,000 incidents in which an estimated 30,000 people, families, and institutions were harmed,” the organization’s general secretary, Rana Dasgupta, said.

“(Also) the actual number of such incidents was much higher as the compilation only included the incidents reported in the media.”

Rana said that last year 82 people were killed while the bodies of 22 victims who died under unclear circumstances were recovered. Comparatively, 71 people were killed and 29 bodies recovered in 2016.

Another 325 people were victims of violent attacks and physical torture, while 18 others were abducted.

Photo: As many as 228 idols were vandalized in 2017 Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Forty-four incidents of rape and attempted rape were recorded and four of the victims were killed after being raped.

The report mentions 471 incidents of attacks, looting, and arson on land, houses, temples and business institutions.

Furthermore, there were 27 successful attempts to grab land belonging to cremation grounds in 2017, with 23 more having failed.

In addition, 228 idols were vandalized last year, compared to 259 in 2016. Despite the lower number of vandalized idols, 14 were stolen in 2017 whereas the number was 11 in 2016.

Leaders of the Oikya Parishad further said that almost 2,500 people, trade centres or institutions were victims of hatred in each month of last year.

Among the 2017 incidents, the attack on the indigenous people in Rangamati’s Langadu was the deadliest.

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Source: http://www.dhakatribune.com/opinion/editorial/2017/12/29/persecuted-amongst-us/

The most persecuted amongst us

Tribune Editorial
Published at 08:39 PM December 29, 2017

The most persecuted amongst us
Photo: STAR MAIL
Providing aid and shelter to victims of communal violence is never enough if we fail, time and again, to prevent such barbaric and hateful crimes to take place in the first place

Our nation has witnessed immense economic growth and commendable digitisation. However, as we move towards a new year, it is disappointing to see that our ethnic and religious minorities continue to be the most persecuted amongst us.

Recent data collected by the National human Rights Commission (NHCR) paint a dark picture: Since 1971, five million Hindus, which is almost 40% of Hindu households in Bangladesh, lost their lands.

Not to mention the recent attacks in Nasirnagar, Thakurpura, and Langadu.

We cannot shy away from these uncomfortable truths. Violence and hate crimes have been widespread and too frequent to go unnoticed.

We cannot really expect real progress and move ahead with our development plans, if certain sections of our population, people who make Bangladesh what it is and contribute to the nation’s continued development, continue to be left behind and alone to fend for themselves against land grabbers and intolerance.

Providing aid and shelter to victims of communal violence is never enough if we fail, time and again, to prevent such barbaric and hateful crimes to take place in the first place.

If the perpetrators of these attacks are not brought to book, we will see minorities needlessly suffer more and live in fear.

The government and local authorities need to take stern actions against such crimes, and take steps to ensure basic rights and safety to all citizens of the country, which include our ethnic and religious minorities.