Army rebuilds 19 damaged temples; PM inaugurates Sept 3
The 19 Buddhist temples that were torched or vandalised by religious fanatics in Cox’s Bazar in last September have been reconstructed and renovated.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is to inaugurate the temples on September 3, said Ruhul Amin, deputy commissioner of Cox’s Bazar.
Islamist fanatics attacked Buddhist homes and temples in Ramu and Ukhia in a two-day mayhem on September 29-30 last year, following a fake Facebook post that demeaned the Quran.
It all began on the evening of September 29, after a certain quarter tagged a local Buddhist boy with the doctored photo.
The Daily Star in its own investigation had found that the photo was then printed and spread in and around Ramu by the quarter to help gather a big crowd and instigate violence.
The Engineering Corps of 17 ECB Battalion of Bangladesh Army in Cox’s Bazar has done the reconstruction and renovation of the temples while the Border Guard Bangladesh has rebuilt the homes. The jobs were completed last month.
The reconstruction work of the temples alone cost the government Tk 20 crore, said AS Anwar Hossain, deputy commanding officer of the battalion.
Under the project, seven temples were reconstructed and five repaired in Ramu while five reconstructed and two repaired in Ukhia, added Anwar, who supervised the work.
Renowned architect Bishwajit Barua designed the temples and gave other technical support.
The deputy commissioner said Hasina would inaugurate the Bimukti Bidarshan Bhabna Kendra, a temple at Uttar Mithachhari village in Ramu, at 11:00am.
She will then inaugurate Ramu Kendriyo Seema Bihar in Ramu Sadar upazila, Lal Ching in Shreekul, Moitri Ching Bihar, Arpona Ching and Sada Ching.
In the afternoon, the PM will inaugurate several establishments in Ukhia, including a number of temples, the Sea Research Institute, Teknaf Fire Service Station, Service Delivery Centre, Teknaf Police Station Bhaban and Cox’s Bazar Muktijoddha Complex.
Hasina is also expected to address a public meeting on the Ukhia High School premises, added the DC.
Lt Col Zulfikar Rahman, commanding officer of the 17 ECB Battalion of Bangladesh Army, said the beauty and exceptional designs of the reconstructed temples would boost tourism.
Pandit Satyapriyo Mahathero, former president of Sangharaj Mahasabha, said Sheikh Hasina’s sincerity in completing the work was praiseworthy.
Source: The Daily Star