10 People Injured In Bomb Attack During Hindu Festival At Kantaji Temple In Bangladesh

06/12/2015 10:48 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Kantaji Temple is a late medieval Hindu temple in Dinajpur, Bangladesh. Built by Maharaja Pran Nath, its construction started in 1722 A.D.and ended in 1752 A.D. during the reign of his son Maharaja Ramnath. It boasts one of the greatest examples on Terracotta architecture in Bangladesh and once had nine spires, but all were destroyed in an earthquake in 1897. June 4, 2008. (Photo by: Majority World/UIG via Getty Images)

DHAKA -- At least 10 people were injured yesterday in a crude bomb attack by unidentified assailants in the premises of a medieval-era temple in northern Bangladesh where thousands of people had gathered for a Hindu religious festival, the latest incident amid a series of attacks by Islamists.

Over 5,000 people were witnessing an open-air show organised to mark the Rash Mela festival when three crude bombs exploded on the premises of Kantaji Temple in northwestern Dinajpur.

In the attack, at least 10 people were injured and most of them suffered splinter injuries, police said.

Police have detained three people for interrogation after the attack.

"Initially it appears that the attackers used a remote controlled device...We have detained three people so far for questioning," a police officer said.

Officer in-charge of the local Kahrol police station Abdul Gafuradded said that investigations are on and "it could be an act of extremists".

Kantaji Temple is the government maintained archaeological site but Hindus also perform their rituals and thousands of people, including Muslims, gather during the annual Rash Mela.

The temple, located in the northern district's Kaharol Upazila, is also a tourist attraction for its brick and terracotta style architecture.

The temple was built at Kantanagar not far from the bank of the River Dhepa by Dinajpur's rulers, with construction commissioned by Maharaja Prannath in 1704 and completed during the reign of his adopted successor Maharaja Ramnath some decades later.

Bangladesh has seen several violent incidents in recent months, including attacks on foreigners and secular bloggers claimed by the IS, although the government says the attacks have been carried out by local Islamist radical groups.

The attacks have alarmed the international community and raised concerns that religious extremism is growing in the traditionally moderate South Asian nation.

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