Temple theft `pre-planned to create insecurity among Hindus`

Bangladeshi Hindus have expressed concern over the robbery at the Dhakeswari National Temple here last week, saying it was "pre-planned" to create insecurity and unrest among the minority community in the country.

Last Updated: Jan 16, 2011, 17:07 PM IST

Dhaka: Bangladeshi Hindus have expressed
concern over the robbery at the Dhakeswari National Temple
here last week, saying it was "pre-planned" to create
insecurity and unrest among the minority community in the
country.

Babul Devnath, the Secretary of Dhaka Metropolitan
Worship Committee, said the robbery at Dhakeswari Temple,
the most important place of worship for the minority community
in the country, was "pre-planned" to create insecurity and
unrest among the Hindus in Bangladesh.

According to the private bdnews24 online, the
Committee, which has its headquarters in the temple, told a
press conference in the capital that the robbery on January 7
was an attempt to disrupt communal harmony in the area.

According a statement read out by Devnath, the theft
was also to foil the attempt of the government to restore the
secular constitution of 1972. The perpetrators were also
trying to thwart the war crimes trial and disrupt communal
harmony.

The Committee was unhappy with the investigation,
alleging that it was proceeding at snail`s pace, the report
said.

Known as the `National Temple`, Dhakeshwari means
"Goddess of Dhaka".

Hinduism is the second largest religion in the
country, constituting nearly 10 per cent of the population.

There are over 12 lakh Hindus in Bangladesh.

Even as there is no statistics available on the Hindu
population in the capital, the community leaders claim it to
be around 20 per cent of the city`s total population of over
one crore.

Worship at the of the state-owned temple was suspended
for an indefinite period following theft of huge amount of
gold and silver ornaments along with Taka 4.5 lakh. Worship
will resume on January 17, the report in the Bangladeshi
online newspaper said.

The commitee said similar incidents of thefts have
occurred in other temples across Bangladesh. It was the third
major temple where theft has taken place in less than a
month.

"A theft took place at Baradeswari Kali Temple on
December 12 and another at Jaykali Temple on December 22. We
demand proper investigations into all these incidents," he was
quoted as saying in an earlier report.

Inspector General of Police Hassan Mahmud
Khondker earlier told that "an extensive investigation"
was underway.

"They stole the gold and silver ornaments weighing
about 200 bhoris adorned on Goddess Durga, some Taka 4.5 lakh
in cash and charity boxes full of uncounted amount of money,"
said Dipu Sen of Bangladesh Puja Celebration Committee.

PTI