12:00 AM, August 07, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 07, 2012

17 arrested over temple land grab

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Staff Correspondent

Law enforcers have arrested 17 people in connection with Saturday's violence at Chirirbandar upazila of Dinajpur over temple land.
More than 50 people were injured on the day in clashes that ensued after a group of people tried to build a mosque on the land at Bolaihat in the upazila.
The government has identified the people involved in the violence, Home Minister Shahara Khatun yesterday said at her office, adding the incident was under probe.
She, however, did not disclose how many were involved or their identities.
The injured had already been given cash and tin used for building houses as compensation, Shahara told reporters.
State Minister for Home Shamsul Hoque Tuku said a one-member probe committee with additional district magistrate of Dinajpur had been formed to investigate the incident.
Meanwhile, two rights bodies -- Forum of Secular Bangladesh and Trial of War Criminals of 1971, and Moulabad Ebong Samprodaikota Birudhi Daksin Asia Ganoshammilan (South Asia People's Forum against Fundamentalism and Communalism) -- condemned the Dinajpur incident.
In a press release, they demanded the arrest of local leaders of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and others responsible for the attack on the minority.
The press release was signed by 57 rights activists, including Justice Mohammad Golam Rabbani, Prof Borhanuddin Khan Jahangir, litterateur Syed Shamsul Haque, Journalist Kamal Lohani, Shahriar Kabir and Kazi Mukul.
Leaders of the minorities organisations, meanwhile, have threatened to boycott the upcoming "Janmastomi celebrations" if proper action is not taken against those who attacked the Hindus on Saturday morning.
They said Prof Hamida Khatun of the area and Aftab Uddin Mollah, a Jamaat-backed upazila chairman of Chirirbandar, incited the land grabbers to attack the minority.
Aftab at a press conference at Dinajpur Jamaat-e-Islami office refuted the allegation against him.

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