Outsiders, along with the locals, took part in the attack, vandalism and arson on the houses of the Hindu community in Pirganj, Rangpur.
Member of Parliament of Pirganj, Rangpur constituency and Speaker of the Jatiya Sangsad Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury made the remarks while visiting Uttarpara in Boro Karimpur Kasba village of Ramnathpur union in Pirganj on Tuesday. Earlier, she had checked up on the victims in the area.
The speaker said, “We have talked to the locals and the affected people. They said there were many outsiders at the time of the attack and they did not recognize their appearance. Many of them had petrol. Of course it is a planned event. Otherwise, such incidents are not supposed to happen. I have never had such an experience in Pirganj. ”
“Durga utsav has been celebrated peacefully in a festive atmosphere in 98 mandapas of Pirganj. There was government support as well as my personal, sub-district administration and party support. No untoward incident took place during the puja in 15 unions and one municipality area. We have to find out how such a destructive incident happened suddenly at the end of the puja,” she added.
She said it will be possible to find out the real culprits if a proper investigation is carried out, adding, “The OC of Pirganj police station went there with his force and tried to keep Majhipara safe.”
Meanwhile, Rangpur District Superintendent of Police also went to the spot with force. In the meantime, those involved in terrorist activities set fire to some houses in Boro Karimpur, leaving Majhipara aside. The police force then fired tear gas and blank shots to disperse the assailants.
Shirin Sharmin said, “Police, BGB, RAB and fire service put out the fire after 28 houses had been burnt down already. Some cattle died and many houses and furniture were destroyed. I strongly condemn such heinous and destructive incidents and hope that the administration will bring the real culprits to justice through a proper investigation.”
She added the victims were immediately assisted in various ways including the distribution of rice, pulses, blankets and sarees. Besides, various initiatives have been taken to rehabilitate them. Their houses will be constructed, financial aid will be given and traders will be facilitated to resettle their business. The Prime Minister is looking into this matter all the time.”
In the meantime, Rangpur Deputy Commissioner Asib Ahsan, District Awami League President Mamtaz Uddin Ahmed, General Secretary Rezaul Karim Raju, Metropolitan Awami League General Secretary Tushar Kanti Mandal, District Chhatra League President Mehedi Hasan Rony and other senior officials of the administration were present.
Meanwhile, Jasad president and former information minister Hasanul Haque Inu, after inspecting the houses set on fire on Tuesday afternoon, said to the affected families, “About 32,000 puja mandals across the country have celebrated this year’s Puja peacefully. But, why were 50 places across the country attacked after the puja?”
At the time, district Jasad President Kumaresh Chandra, UP Chairman Sadekul Islam and convener of the Upazila Puja Celebration Committee Sudhir Chandra spoke on the occasion.
Earlier on Sunday night (October 17), extremists attacked, vandalized and set fire to the houses of the Hindu community in Ramnathpur Union of Pirganj, accusing them of insulting Islam on Facebook.
Two cases have been filed by the police at Pirganj police station in connection with the incident. Police have arrested the youth Paritosh Sarkar, who posted rumour on Facebook. Of the 42 people detained in the attack, 41 have been arrested and sent to court.