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Ajit Jain in Toronto
Nobody can explain why people should attack Hindus or their holy places. But it is happening in Canada and the United States.
An Arya Samaj temple in Hamilton, west of Toronto, was gutted by a fire on Friday. The local police are investigating if the fire was a possible retaliation to the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States.
"We are not convinced it was naturally caused, yet we are not prepared to say it was arson either," said Hamilton-Wentworth police Staff Sergeant Jack Loft.
Hindu leaders in Hamilton are at a loss to explain why anyone might want to lash out at the community.
The Ontario fire marshal's office too has not ruled out arson. No casualties were reported in the incident.
An hour before Friday's fire, Hindus had gathered at the Hamilton temple for a special service to pray for the victims of Tuesday's attacks.
"This is a Hindu temple. We are a peaceful community. It is sad to see this happen," temple member Mahendra Joshi said.
"I have no idea how it happened. I won't speculate on the causes," temple president Narendar Pasi added.
Only the hand carved entrance to the temple remains; the rest of the building was destroyed in the fire.
As in the United States, so also in Canada, anti-Muslim threats, vandalism and isolated acts of bigotry have been reported. Many mosques in Toronto and other cities remain closed while Muslim leaders urged calm and restraint.
The Attack on America: The Complete Coverage
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