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Tuesday, 8 October, 2002, 14:21 GMT 15:21 UK
Security fears for Hindu festival
The authorities in Bangladesh have tightened security measures at Hindu places of worship in the run-up to a major festival for the country's main religious minority -- the Durga Puja -- which begins on Saturday.

The precautions come in the wake of a number of attacks on Hindu temples and idols in recent days.

A senior minister, Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan, has called on the Hindu community to take part in festivities without any fear, but to remain vigilant.

Last year, the Durga Puja festival was marred by violence which followed the elections.

A BBC correspondent in Dhaka says that Hindus were targeted because they were perceived as supporters of the opposition Awami League, which lost the election to the Islamic coalition led by the prime minister, Khaleda Zia.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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