Iqbal has confessed to placing the Quran at the Durga puja mandap in Comilla, say police
A Comilla court has granted police seven days to interrogate four people including Iqbal Hossain, who is believed to be responsible for placing a copy of the Holy Quran at a Durga puja mandap in Comilla that instigated a spate of communal violence across the country.
Comilla Senior Judicial Magistrate Mithila Jahan Nipa passed the order after police produced the suspects in court Saturday afternoon and submitted a 10-day remand prayer.
Other accused are - Ekram, who called 999 after the incident and Darogabari shrine caretakers– Hafez Humayun and Faisal.
These four men have been shown arrested in a case filed over hurting religious sentiment, confirmed Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP) M Tanvir Ahmed.
ASP Tanvir said: "During preliminary interrogation, Iqbal confessed to placing the Quran on the lap of Hanuman, a central character in the Epic of Ramayana, before stealing the club from the idol’s hand on October 13."
"According to Iqbal, he hurled the stolen Hanuman club into a nearby pond later that night," added the police official.
Iqbal was arrested from the Sugandha beach area of Cox’s Bazar at around 10pm on Thursday.
He was then taken to the Comilla Police Lines on Friday, where he was interrogated by police.
Family members of Iqbal claimed that he was mentally unstable, and someone might have taken advantage of his condition to make him place the Quran.
On October 13, a 999 call to police reported that a copy of the Quran was found on an idol of a puja venue in Comilla.
Locals said they found a copy of the Quran on the lap of the Hanuman idol, but his weapon, a club, was missing.
Several temples and puja venues in the city came under attack in the afternoon as tension mounted over allegations of sacrilege.
The violence later spread across Bangladesh, leaving seven dead and many Hindu houses and businesses vandalized.