Dhaka: Fuming over a picture of burnt Quran posted on Facebook, Bangladeshi Muslims, numbering thousands, torched at least 10 Buddhist temples and 40 homes on Sunday.
Bangladeshi security officials rushed to control the situation which was restored to normal by Sunday afternoon.
Nojibul Islam, a police chief in the coastal district of Cox`s Bazar said that at least 20 people were injured in the attacks that started late Saturday after a photo of a burned copy of the Muslim holy book Quran was posted on Facebook.
The rioters suspected a Buddhist boy to have posted the offensive picture of Quran on Facebook and hence they targeted Buddhist temples to vent their anger.
Faruk Ahmed, a senior police officer, told Xinhua from Cox`s Bazar district, "The Facebook account holder, Uttom Kumar Barua, in the village in Cox`s Bazar`s Ramu subdistrict has taken a photo of trampling on the holy Quran and uploaded it from his Facebook account”.
Ahmed said after the news about the defaming picture spread, hundreds of Muslims, who were already angry over a US-made anti- Islam film, took to the streets and launched attacks on the houses and the temples before the law enforcers reached the scene to bring situation under control in the wee hours of Sunday.
According to the police official, Barua had gone into hiding but the authorities had detained the boy`s parents and were investigating.
Bangladesh deployed extra security officers and banned public gatherings in the troubled areas near the southern border with Myanmar.
Bangladesh`s popular English-language Daily Star newspaper quoted the boy as saying that the photo was mistakenly tagged on his Facebook profile. The newspaper reported that soon after the violence started, the boy`s Facebook account was closed and police escorted him and his mother to safety.
Buddhists make up less than 1 percent of Muslim-majority Bangladesh`s 150 million people.
The violence in Bangladesh comes after weeks of protest over an anti-Islam movie made in the US named – Innocence of Muslims – that depicted Prophet Muhammad as a womanizer, fraud and child molester.
Whole world witnessed violent anti-US protests and attacks on Western embassies leading to death of four American staffers and also demonstrators.
With Agency Inputs