Bangladesh: Luftar and Mahmud forcibly occupy ancestral land of Hindu family

Two Islamists, identified as Lutfar Khan and Mahmud Khan, have been trying to forcibly occupy the ancestral land of a Hindu family in the Barishal district of Bangladesh.

The victim was identified as Titu Saha, a resident of Ward No.5 of Bakerganj Upazila municipality. Saha has been fighting a legal case over his land against Lutfar Khan in the High Court.

The Islamist along with his accomplice bypassed the court proceedings and began constructing a boundary wall on the Hindi family’s land on Sunday (16th February).

Lutfar Khan reportedly directed some men to cut down trees on Saha’s ancestral property and build a permanent brick wall. He and Mahmud also threatened the Hindu family and attempted to attack their house.

Forced by circumstances, Titu Saha’s wife Nupur Das filed a written complaint with the officer-in-charge of the Bakerganj police station Md. Afzal Hossain. It was only then that the police intervened and stopped the construction. A probe has been initiated into the matter.

Lutfar Khan flouts local arbitration, claims to be the ‘property owner’

While speaking to Barishal Times, Titu Saha said, “The matter was decided to be sorted out through local arbitration on Sunday (18th February). But they flouted all that and began constructing a boundary wall.”

His mother Geeta Rani Saha broke down in tears and informed, “They are illegally occupying the house of my husband. We, Hindus, belong to this country? Can’t we live here (peacefully)? I demand strong action from the local administration against the culprits.”

In the meantime, accused Lutfar Khan told Barishal Times that he has purchased the land and is the owner of the property. This is not the first time that Islamists have tried to forcibly encroach upon the land of minority Hindu families in Bangladesh.

Hindu families forced to sell their houses in Shailkupa

Earlier, OpIndia reported that several Hindu families have been forced to vacate their houses in Shailkupa upazila in the Khulna division of Bangladesh and sell them at giveaway prices to avoid religious persecution.

As per a report by Kalbela News published in November 2023, the minority community is facing threats from Islamists and hence many Hindu families are migrating to other parts of the country. For instance, the residence of a deceased Hindu man named Satyendranath Saha was encroached and a 4-storeyed building was constructed in its place.

‘Jubo League’ Chairman (Shailkupa upazila) Shamim Hossain Mollah and his father Sabdar Hossain Mollah were accused of infringing upon the property of the Hindu family. It must be mentioned that the ‘Jubo League is the youth wing of the ruling Sheikh Hasina-led-Bangladesh Awami League party.

While speaking about the matter, the daughter-in-law of Satyendranath Saha informed that the ‘Jubo League’ leader had taken their house and a Kali Mandir by force. Despite complaints to the local MP Mohammed Abdul Hyee, no action has been taken against the accused.

Interestingly, Hyee is also a leader of the Bangladesh Awami League party from the Jhenaidah constituency. According to Kalbela News, the case of Satyendranath Saha is one of the countless stories of minority Hindu families who have lost their property to encroachment by local influential Muslim leaders.

Everyone involved in this organised form of ‘land jihad’ are politicians and political workers. In order to intimidate the Hindu residents of Shailkupa into selling their homes, the Islamists have resorted to threats, assault and even vandalism of Hindu temples.

89990 acres of land of religious minorities remain encroached: Reports

Previously the Bangladesh National Hindu Grand Alliance (also called the Bangladesh Jatiyo Hindu Mahajotinformed that a whopping 89,990 acres of land belonging to religious minorities in the country remain occupied.

Between January and December 2022, about 572 families were also evicted from their homes while 445 families of religious minorities were forced to leave Bangladesh altogether.

Source: OpIndia

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