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Khaleda Zia condemns attacks on Hindus; demands probe

March 05, 2013 12:12 IST

Bangladesh's main opposition leader Khaleda Zia has condemned recent attacks on Hindus in different parts of the country allegedly by activists of fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami and demanded punishment to perpetrators of the attacks.

She, however, made no mention of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party ally Jamaat-e-Islami which, according to the victims, unleashed terror against the Hindus, burning down houses and temples, shortly after a war crimes tribunal gave death sentence to Jamaat leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee last week.

On March 1, Zia, the chairperson of the BNP, had blamed the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for the ‘planned attack aimed to divert people's democratic movement and destroy the country’s communal harmony’.

Now, days after the atrocities against minorities, she demanded that the government identify and punish the perpetrators through ‘neutral’ investigation and compensate the victims.

"I called upon the administration and law enforcers to prevent such attacks on minorities with an iron fist," said Khaleda. The Hindus, their houses and temples had come under attacks in districts such as Noakhali, Satkhira and Sirajganj on Thursday.

Pallab Bhattacharya in Dhaka