Protest demos in Bangladesh against Quran’s desecration

Dhaka, October 18 (KMS): Protest demonstrations were held in Bangladesh against the desecration of Quran by Hindu activists.

Tensions in the country escalated on Wednesday after widely circulated footage on social media showed the Quran being placed on the knee of a Hindu god during celebrations for the Hindu festival Durga Puja in the eastern district of Cumilla.

Some 10,000 protesters — many of them carrying banners of Islamist political parties — took to the streets outside the main mosque of the capital, Dhaka.

The crowd chanted “Down with the enemies of the Islam” and “Hang the culprits”.

At least four Muslims were killed late on Wednesday when police opened fire on a crowd of about 500 people attacking a Hindu temple in Hajiganj, one of several towns hit by the disturbances.

Violence also broke out in the capital Dhaka and the port city of Chittagong, where police fired teargas and rubber bullets at thousands of Muslim protesters.

“We ask the government to arrest those who defamed the Quran by putting it at the feet of an idol in Cumilla,” said Mosaddek Billah al-Madani, president of Bangladesh’s Islami Movement. He added that protesters demanded “the death sentence” for those responsible for the actions.

Mobs attacked Hindu temples and clashed with police in various parts of Bangladesh in the following days, leaving at least six people, including two Hindus, dead and more than 100 injured.