Bangladesh: Hindu Priest who lived to tell the tale

wapan Chakravorty, Hindu Priest, Bangladesh, murder, Hindus

Dhaka, July 1, 2016: Hindu Priests are a prime target for the extremists in Bangladesh. The assassination attempts against them are clinically precise, and often the Priests are monitored from a very close range so that the extremist intent on the slaughter is able to take down the victim in his very first attempt. Unfortunately, the success rate for the extremists has been high so far as the victim is often alone and unarmed.

But there is one man who was able to escape the blade that was to take his life. A Hindu Priest named Swapan Chakravorty (36) works as a Purohit at the local Madhav Mandir in his vicinity where a murder attempt was made on his life 22.06.2016 at about 8.30 p.m. by local perpetrators in the Kaliakoir Upazila of Gazipur District. The Hindu Priest was returning to his home from the Temple after performing Puja at Chapeer. As he was being accosted by the hiding extremists looking for a moment to assassinate him, just then a vehicle passed unsettling the extremists and exposing their weapons. As soon as their cover went bust the to-be attackers fled.

Bangladesh Minority Watch contacted Mohammad Abdul Motaleb Meah, Officer in Charge of Kaliakoir police station over his mobile who  like the usual policeman did not attach any importance to this incident and said  that the incident is nothing to think about and the victim did not lodge any F.I.R. before his police station in time and as per his inquiry report it was robbery and not an attempt to murder. But the Hindu Priest Swapan Chakravorty believed that all that the attackers wanted was to kill him to satisfy their religious extremism.

Considering, that by coming out with his story, the Hindu Priest is making himself a known target, there was very little to doubt him. And this was exactly what the Bangladesh Minority Watch also felt, after it investigated the matter and spoke to 10  local Muslims and Hindus on June 25th. The people said the exact thing; that the Hindu Priest was indeed a target and it was his good luck that saved his life.

The minority watchdog then took the Hindu Priest and lodged an FIR at Kaliakoir Police Station (case No.41) dated 25.06.2016 under section 143/341/323/307/506(11) of Bangladesh Penal code against four perpetrators.

Eventually, the Bangladesh Police arrested one perpetrator Chota Zahangir who had intercepted the Hindu Purohit on the road on the fateful day. Will he get justice? Will the perpetrators get caught? No one knows, but at least one man was able to escape the jaws of death.