Hindu Homes Looted and Burnt to Ashes in Organised Attacks in Satkhira

03-05-2012

Hindu homes in two villages (Fatehpur and Chakdaha) were looted and burnt down to ashes in an arson attack in the Satkhira District on March 31 and April 1.

The attacks were reportedly carried out by a large group of mainly Jamaat –e-Islami supporters in a response to a local school play that they perceived to ‘insult’ the prophet Muhammad. A Jamaat-e-Islami publisher of local newspaper Dristpat has since been arrested for helping to instigate the violence through the publication of an inflammatory article.

GHRD heard and recorded statements of local witnesses, victims and local journalists sharing their direct experiences and extensive documentation of the attack. At least one woman said that she was sexually assaulted by a group of five men as her house was looted and burnt to ashes. Nevertheless, she has not dared to report the attack fearing personal retaliation. The perpetrators also hindered the fire brigades who came to the spot through a road blockade, while the police stood passively by watching the attacks happen.

Two police officers have been discharged on failing to maintain law and order and the case is currently handled in Court, where some 15 perpetrators and instigators have been arrested so far.See videoclip on the attack 

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