Clash over mosque bet 2 Muslim sects in B`desh turns violent

A violent clash between two Muslim sects in B`desh left at least 20 people injured and gutted 20 shops.

Last Updated: Jan 07, 2011, 21:16 PM IST

Dhaka: A violent clash between two Muslim
sects in Bangladesh, who were at loggerheads over the control
of a crucial mosque in northeastern port city of Chittagong,
today left at least 20 people injured and gutted 20 shops.

At least 20 people were injured and 20 shops were set
on fire in the clash between the followers of relatively
hardliner Wahabi sect and Sunni group over the dominance of a
mosque during Friday prayers, witnesses and officials said.

"The two groups are at loggerheads for long to
establish control over the mosque and the clash began after
both the groups offered prayers at the mosque," a police
official said.

A local journalist, quoting witnesses, said the
feuding groups used sticks and wooden bars and brickbats
prompting intervention of elite anti-crime Rapid Action
Battalion (RAB) and armed police with batons and tear gas
canisters.

"RAB and policemen are now guarding the area while
officials have invited leaders of both groups for negotiation
for settlement of the feud," he said.

According to witnesses, the clash erupted during the
Friday prayers when followers of Wahabi Sunni sects gathered
at a mosque in suburban Patia area.

The official said the local administration had
earlier asked the local residents not to offer prayers at the
mosque to prevent violence, "but both the groups gathered
today defying the request".

PTI