In an attempt to terrorise the religious minority, unidentified persons attacked a Hindu temple, murdered a priest and shot and badly wounded a devotee in northern Bangladesh early on Sunday.
The attack, third in the last five months on Christian and Hindu priests, took place in Debigonj of Panchagarh district. Jogeshwar Dasa Dhikari (50), the priest of Sri Sri Shantu Santo Gaurio monastery, was stabbed to death, local police said.
Police said the incident happened when the priest was preparing for morning prayers as the assailants first hurled stones at the temple. Before fleeing, they shot at one Gopal Chandra Roy who was rushing in to save the priest.
The attackers also fired shots and threw crude bombs before escaping from the spot on a motorbike, the police said, adding that the identity of the assailants and the motive behind the assault were not immediately clear.
Three deadly attacks
With Sunday’s incident, three leaders of religious minorities have come under attacks over the last five months in northern Bangladesh.
Pastor Luke Sarkar of Faith Bible Church in northern Ishwardi had a narrow escape from an attempt on his life when unidentified youths tried to slit his throat in Pabna in October last year. Piero Parolari (57), an Italian doctor and pastor, was shot in the back of his head in Dinajpur town in November.
The District Superintendent of Police said the police were tracing the killers to ascertain the motive behind the attacks.