The West Bengal government has alerted authorities of all districts to intensify their vigil against attempts to foment trouble in the wake of communal attacks in neighbouring Bangladesh.
Police chiefs have been advised to exercise caution against fake news circulation on the violence and vandalism in the neighbouring country, and thwart attempts to create tension.
The alert comes amid reports of mobs attacking Hindu temples and Durga Puja pandals in various parts of Bangladesh over the last week. A rumour about the Quran being dishonoured at a Hindu place of worship in Comilla ignited the spate of communal attacks across the neighbouring country, resulting in the deaths of six people.
On Sunday night, a mob damaged 66 houses and set on fire at least 20 homes of Hindus in Bangladesh’s Rangpur district over an alleged blasphemous social media post
As many as 52 suspects have been arrested while a manhunt was launched for more suspects under a “combing operation” in collaboration with other security forces, a Bangladeshi police official told PTI.
Prior to that, the ISKCON temple in Noakhali was beset by a reportedly 500-strong mob, who vandalised the temple premises, attacked priests and allegedly killed a devotee.
The communal tensions came as the minority Hindus, who constitute 9 per cent of Bangladesh’s 160 million population, celebrated Durga Puja last week.
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has promised to bring to justice the culprits behind the violence, saying anyone involved in the attacks on Hindu temples and Durga Puja venues in Comilla will not be spared.