Dhaka: A 65-year-old Bangladeshi Christian was hacked and injured on Friday with sharp weapons by a group of youths while he was guarding a church, police said. Gilbert Costa was attacked by youths early on Friday while he was guarding the Saint Rita Church at Mathurapur, Pabna district, some 175 kilometres from Dhaka.
“We have detained three suspects after the attack. We suspect the attack was motivated from previous enmity,” Chatmohar Police Station Officer-in-Charge Ahsan Habib was quoted as saying by the Daily Star.
Further details will be known after the investigation, he said. Police suspect the incident was the result of a family feud. “Around 4am, some men came to the church and asked for its key. As Gilbert refused to give the key, they started hacking him with sharp weapons,” said church management committee member Martin Dominic Rozario.
“They fled the scene as soon as local shopkeepers came to Gilbert’s rescue,” Rozario added. Costa has been admitted at the Pabna General Hospital.
Bangladesh has suffered a spate of attacks on religious minorities. In October 2015, a church pastor was attacked in Pabna’s Ishwardi upazila. The attack in Pabna is the latest in a series of attacks and murders carried out in the similar fashion across Bangladesh in the past two years.
The victims of those attacks included secular writers and bloggers, online activists, publishers, foreigners, members of religious minorities and rights activists.