On Friday (October 15), a frenzied mob of radical Islamists attacked the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) temple in the Noakhali district in the Chittagong Division of Bangladesh. The dastardly attack comes days after radical Islamists vandalised Durga Puja pandals under the pretext of blasphemy.
In a tweet, the official handle of ISKCON wrote, “ISKCON temple & devotees were violently attacked today by a mob in Noakhali, Bangladesh. Temple suffered significant damage & the condition of a devotee remains critical. We call on the Govt of Bangladesh to ensure the safety of all Hindus & bring the perpetrators to justice.”
The Bangladesh unit of ISKCON lamented that the sculpture of its founder, AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, was burnt down during the arson attack on the temple.
A Twitter account (@HinduVoice_in) had shared disturbing visuals of arson by radical Islamists. In the video clip, flames and smoke were seen rising from the burnt ISKCON temple.
ISKCON spokesperson Radharamn Das shared a video wherein radical Islamists were seen desecrating the ISKCON temple. “Just few hours back today, around 500 Muslim mob gathered outside ISKCON temple in Noakhali and they broke deities inside ISKCON temple and set temple on fire,” he informed. Furthermore, he stated that a makeshift Durga pandal, located in front of the temple, was also vandalised. “Our devotees fought; many are critical,” he added.
Radharamn Das had shared visuals of a Hindu monk, who was critically injured after sustaining a dagger attack to his head. He remarked, “Please pray for these two devotees who lost their life today at our ISKCON temple in Bangladesh: (1) Nitai Das Prabhu and (2) Jatan Saha Prabhu. They fought bravely with Muslims while trying to protect the Deities but were outnumbered. Another Hindu was killed in Police firing.”
He also added, “Today morning the dead body of another ISKCON devotee Partha Das was found floating in the pond near the temple. He was missing since yesterday. He was brutally tortured, body parts removed. He was just 25 year’s old.
In a video that has now surfaced on social media, a Hindu monk at ISKCON narrated, “Hare Krishna! Today, Jamaat attacked the ISKCON temple and other temples in Choumani in Noakhali. They have executed it as part of a vicious plan. ISKCON Mandir has been desecrated. They have killed one devotee outright and stabbed another, leading to his critical state. Several motorcycles were set on fire. There was a mob of 400-500 people. They have looted 1 lakh taka from our temple The Noakhali administration has yet not taken any action against the miscreants.”
150 Hindu families attacked over ‘Quran insult’ rumours, vandalism of Durga Pandals
Brutal attacks, vandalism, looting, and arson had returned to haunt Hindus in Bangladesh’s Noakhali district, as close to 150 households were reportedly attacked and at least three killed in a violent clash on Wednesday (October 13).
The incident took place after a Facebook rumour claiming ‘insult to Quran’ at a Durga Puja pandal went viral. Videos emerged on social media where a mob of enraged Muslims were seen pelting stones and vandalising makeshift Durga Puja pandals and attacking Hindu families in Bangladesh’s Chandpur area. A social media user from Bangladesh stated that the Islamic mob was calling for the burning of a local ISKCON temple. Bangladeshi handles had stated that under the guise of attacks, rampant loot and molestation of women have also taken place. 2 persons have been found dead in the Chandpur area.
Following the incident, Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina ordered the criminals, behind spreading communal attacks and propaganda, to be identified and punished as an example. Meanwhile, back in New Delhi, the external affairs ministry said that it was in touch with the high commission officials and noted the strict action be taken by the Bangladesh government. Since the incident, the Bangladesh police have made over 100 arrests and the probe is still underway.