Hindu man hacked to death in BD

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

NEW DELHI—A Hindu man was hacked to death in cen­tral Bangladesh on Satur­day, police said, fol­low­ing a spate of sim­i­lar at­tacks in the Mus­lim-ma­jor­ity South Asian na­tion.

Au­thor­i­ties are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether the killing of Nikhil Joarder was con­nected to a 2012 com­plaint against him for al­leged com­ments he made against Prophet Muham­mad, said As­lam Khan, a police of­fi­cer in the district of Tan­gail, where the at­tack took place.

Joarder was at­tacked with sharp weapons by two men on mo­tor­cy­cles as he sat in his tai­lor shop, Khan said.

There was no im­me­di­ate claim of re­spon­si­bil­ity for the at­tack.

Joarder spent two weeks in prison in 2012 and was re­leased af­ter the com­plaint against him was with­drawn.

The at­tack on him was sim­i­lar to re­cent killings of athe­ist blog­gers, aca­demics, re­li­gious mi­nori­ties and most re­cently a gay rights ac­tivist in Bangladesh by rad­i­cal Is­lamists.

Five peo­ple have al­ready been killed in such at­tacks this year and nine were killed last year. While there have been some ar­rests — mostly of lowlevel op­er­a­tives — there have been no prose­cu­tions so far and au­thor­i­ties have strug­gled to make any head­way in nam­ing those plan­ning the at­tacks.

For the 2013 killing of an athe­ist blog­ger, a court has sen­tenced two men to death and six oth­ers to time in prison.

Nearly all the at­tacks have been claimed by in­ter­na­tional Is­lamist ex­trem­ist groups, in­clud­ing the Is­lamic State group and var­i­ous af­fil­i­ates of alQaida. The gov­ern­ment, how­ever, has re­fused to ac­cept that these groups have a pres­ence in Bangladesh, and has blamed the vi­o­lence on its po­lit­i­cal op­po­si­tion.—AP

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