Hindus & Muslims tenacious living in Bangladesh  

Nafisa Anjum Ahana 

Bangladesh is a secular state where Islam is considered as a state religion. In this country, the constitution proclaims that “the State shall ensure equal rights and status in the practice of Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian and other religions as well. 

Every year we transpire a lot of celebrations of many religions. People respects all the religions and observe each function with joy and pleasure. It symbolizes how credulous our culture is! 

A splendid co-ordination of Hindus and Muslims! 

Population of Muslims and Hindus in Bangladesh: 

Bangladesh is a Muslim majority nation. The population was about 152 million as of 2011 census and making Bangladesh the third largest Muslim Majority Nation in the world. Bangladesh constitutes 90.39% of Muslims in terms of population.  

Hinduism is the second largest religious affiliation in Bangladesh. It constitutes 8.54% of population according to Bureau of Statistics.  There were 12.49 million Hindus in Bangladesh as far 2011 census. 

Religious function and rituals: 

Islamic observances: 

Al- Hijra- Islamic New Year. Marked as the end of journey of Muhammad (Sm) ‘s journey from Makkah to Madina. 

Eid– ul– Adha Festival of sacrifice & Eid- ul- Fitr– End of Muslim month of Ramadan & Ramadan- month of fasting 

Prophet’s Birthday – Celebration of the day Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was born 


Hinduism functions and rituals: 

Diwali- The festival of lights. It is the most popular festival in the Indian subcontinent.  

Holi- Festival of colour and harbinger of spring. 

Other celebrations include, Onam, Maha Shivaratri, Krishna Janmashtami, Makar Shankranti, Ganesh Chaturthi & Rama Navami . People of all religions celebrate these festivals with due respect and live together happily in this tiny country.  

Relation of Hindus and Muslims: 

Hindus believe that they have a congenial relation with Muslims. Hindus used to attend Muslim socio culture program, wedding, Eid festival, etc. Hindus used to help needy people irrespective of religious background. Hindus are cooperative with Muslims in their social life. The Muslims as well as affiliate with the Hindus cordially. We don’t consider any religious views in terms of discussions, friendships, converse, discourse, etc. This well-grounded relationship between the Hindus and Muslims concepts of being an amiable country day by day. Not only Hindu and Muslims but also every religion people are safe and happy in Bangladesh.  

Historical conflicts of Hinduism and Muslims: 

Bangladesh had been rocked by several anti- Hindu riots in 1992, 2001, 2013, 2014. The violence was towards the minority Hindu community. Burning, looting of Hindu owned properties, businesses, abduction and rape of women, destruction of temples by the extremist Muslim mobs. 

Hindus were first attacked in 1992 by Islamic fundamentalists. More than 200 temples were destroyed. The events were widely seen as a repercussion against the razing of the Babri mosque in India. 

It is visible that in the past due to lack of a sensibility many times we faced historical conflicts between the Hindu and Muslims. But now with the growing generation people are being cautious of the development of the country being together cordially. 

Unity of Hindu and Muslims in Bengali Nationalism: 

Bengali nationalism is a form of nationalism that focuses Bengalis as a single nation. The people of Bengali ethnicity speak the Bengali language with pride. We know that our country is the only country which fought for its language diligently. Also, in the war of independence even the Hindus decided to choose their own country even though majority of people in Bangladesh are Muslims. This showed the unity of the Bengali people for their language and culture instead of religion.  

Hindus and Muslims’ house of worship: 

Mosques – It is a pious and religious place where the Muslims bow down to their god. It is not just a worship home but the soul of all Muslims. The only house where they offer prayer being a deity of god.  

According to Religious Affairs Minister Matiur Rahman told members of parliament in November 2015, Bangladesh already has more than 250,000 mosques. The capital, Dhaka often referred as the city of mosques according to Islamic Foundation. 201 mosques are expected to be the highest minaret in Bangladesh. Baba Adam’s mosque, Bagha mosque, Batiul Aman mosques not only famous and precious to Muslims but also the Hindus appreciates such house of worships as well. 

Temples – Hindu temple is a place of worship of Hindu deity. There are many Gods in the Hindu religion. Hindu temples are the combination of art, religious belief and values. The top 10 temples in Bangladesh which signifies with religious beliefs are Satsang Ashram, Sri Chaitanya Mandir, Sylhet, Ramna Kali Mandir, Kal Bhairab Temple, Brahmanbaria, Sri Sri Lokenath Brahma chari Ashram, Bardi, Narayanganj, Puthia Temple Complex, Adinath Temple, Maheshkhali, Chandranath Temple, Kantajew Temple, Dinajpur, and Dhakeshwari temple, Old Dhaka 

Festivals – There are a lot of festivals which are observed being a citizen of a country, not considering the religion. Like Pahela Baishakh which is Bengali’s New year, Ekushey in February, Victory Day, & Nobanno,  Bengali harvest celebration. Bangladesh is a land of festivals. There is a popular saying in Bangla “Baro Mashe Tero Paban” meaning 13 festivals in 12 months and it is interesting that many of our festivals are linked with religions, seasons and special occasions.  

Cuisine: Of Hindus and Muslims 

Muslims will eat only permitted (halal) foods and not eat or drink anything which is forbidden (haram). Halal food requires where Allah’s name is invoked at the time when an animal is killed. Lamb, beef, goat, chicken all are the halal foods which the Muslims eat in the name of Allah along with fruits and vegetables. 

Most of the Hindus are lacto– vegetarian. They avoid meat and eggs although some of them eat lamb, meat and fish. They avoid beef, because cow is considered as a holy animal but dairy products are eaten by them. Animal derived fats i.e lard and dripping are not permitted.  

 It’s not harmful to eat with the Hindus as long as the food itself is free from Haram matters (which means no alcohol and pork). All the human beings in the world are brothers of each other without considering their religion and status.  

Hindu and Muslims marriage: 

In this country we often see that many people don’t consider religion as an obstacle. If you get a strong feeling for someone you must surely proceed. However, in Islam, conversion is a must if one of the spouses is a non-Muslim.  

Frequently Asked Questions : 

1.How does Islam compare to Hinduism?  

Ans- Islam contains a number of basic beliefs. Like Islam, Hinduism has religious autonomy. Hinduism has not spread much unlike the far- reaching Islam religion.  

2.What does Islam says about other religion?  

Ans- Muslim hold that for someone to worship any other god other than Allah (the same God of the Jews, Christians and Muslims) is a sin that will lead separation from Allah 

3.Who came first Hinduism or Islam? 

Ans- Hinduism is the oldest religion according to many scholars as it pertains to Idol Worshiping. With roots and customs dating back more than 4000 years. However, the Muslim belief is that Adam came first and at that time when people lost their faith in God, they turned to Idol Worshiping. So according to Islamic belief, one God worship was from the time humankind was created but was lost due to lack of faith.   

4.Who named Hinduism? 

Ans- The actual term “Hindu” first occurs, states “Gavin Flood”. The Punjab region called Sapta Sindhu in the Vedas is called Hapta Hindu in Zemd Avesta. 

The community is more important than absolute wealth. This article contributes to the determinants of happiness and extents ways in which religion effects happiness in the global world. Conviction of how Hindus and Muslims live show how humanity matters more than religion. If there is no humanity than there is no use of having a perfect religion. We must have the back of our environment and people. Only after that we can get a beautiful world.