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Indian diplomat visits ashram where elderly worker murdered

A senior Indian diplomat visited a Hindu ashram in northwestern Bangladesh where an elderly worker was hacked to death by machete-wielding suspected Islamists, the second such murder of minority community member within a week in the country.

Nityaranjan Pandey-AV
Nityaranjan Pandey, 60, who was working as a volunteer for the past 40 years at the Thakur Anukul Chandra Satsanga Paramtirtha Hemayetpurdham Ashram, was murdered this morning in Pabnas Hemayetpur Upazila.

Local residents said the killers hit him on the head and neck with machetes and fled the scene. He died on the spot.

Assistant High Commissioner Sandip Mitra of Assistant High Commission of India in Rajshahi city visited the ashram and spoke to officials and priests there.

The monastery, named after a famous Hindu saint, draws huge number of Hindu devotees from across Bangladesh and neighbouring India.

On Tuesday, the suspected Islamists hacked to death 70-year-old Hindu priest Ananda Gopal Ganguly in western Jhinaidah when he was going to a nearby temple.

Two officials from the Indian High Commission in Dhaka had visited the home of the murdered priest in Koratipara village of Jhenaidah and met his family members on Wednesday.

First Secretary (Political and Information) Rajesh Uike and First Secretary (Consular) Ramakant Gupta at the time told reporters that they hoped police will bring the killers to justice.

Since May 1, Bangladesh has witnessed eight targeted murders in a series of brutal attacks on religious minorities and secular activists.

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