Rights activists have observed that communal attacks are increasing in frequency, as instigators of previous incidents are yet to be punished.
Attacks on school teachers from minority communities over alleged defamatory statements on religion were first reported in 2011. Since then, communal attacks fueled by rumours of religious disrespect has become a regular phenomenon, said speakers at a press conference.
The press conference was jointly organised by nine rights organisations, including Bangladesh Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity Council, Nijera Kori, Bangladesh Legal Aid Services Trust (BLAST), Bangladesh Environment Lawyers' Association, Association for Land Reforms and Development and Bangladesh Adivasi Forum.
Advocate Rana Dasgupta, secretary general of Bangladesh Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity Council, said the popularity of Facebook has taken communal incitement to another level.
“Communal attacks using fake Facebook posts were first witnessed in Cox's Bazar. Then it spread to Pabna, Brahmanbaria and Rangpur. Those behind the instigating posts have never been identified. Communal violence will continue as long as they roam free and unpunished," Rana said.
The secretary general also mentioned the involvement of some of the leaders and activists of the ruling party in communal violence.
Meanwhile, Khushi Kabir, coordinator of Nijera Kori, said the government needed to be held accountable for not playing its role in stopping incidents of communal violence.
Furthermore, Barrister Sara Hossain, honorary executive director of BLAST, said an investigation should be conducted to verify how much the government was at fault regarding the increasing frequency of the attacks on minorities.