Vested quarters are trying to tarnish Bangladesh's image, says Hasina

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said the recent religiously motivated attacks on Hindus were carried out with the intention of tarnishing the image of Bangladesh.

Certain quarters with vested interests are disseminating propaganda aimed at creating a communal divide, according to the prime minister.

Hasina made the remarks while inaugurating the Payra Bridge in southern Bangladesh via video link from Ganabhaban on Sunday.

"No one can make Bangladesh go backwards. Some of the incidents that we occasionally see are orchestrated. It is being done intentionally so that Bangladesh's image is damaged," she said.

"No matter how much good work we do, there is a quarter that is occupied with discrediting Bangladesh. What do they want? They don't want the normal democratic process to continue in this country."

The prime minister urged the public to be wary of the attempts to destabilise the country.

A provocative social media campaign centring the alleged dishonouring of the Quran at a puja venue in Cumilla on Oct 13 triggered communal violence during which Muslim fanatics carried out attacks on temples and puja venues in the city, leaving scores of people injured.

Eight people died as communal violence spread to several other districts amid Durga Puja. Police arrested hundreds of people in dozens of cases over the clashes and attacks.