DHAKA: At least 13 Muslim worshippers were killed and 15 hurt when lightning struck a mosque in a remote village in northeast Bangladesh as they held special Ramazan prayers, police said on Saturday.
The imam was among those instantly killed when a lightning bolt hit the tin-and-thatch building at Saraswatipur village, about 200 kilometres (125 miles) from the capital Dhaka, late on Friday.
The lightning appeared to "electrify" the mosque after hitting a rooftop microphone being run on power from a car battery, local council member Abul Kalam told AFP by telephone.
About 35 people from the village in the lake district of Sunamganj were holding prayers known as Taraweeh – offered during the holy fasting month of Ramazan – at the time, police chief Bayes Alam said.
"All 13, including the imam, died on the spot. The bodies and faces of some of the victims were burnt," Alam told AFP, adding six of the injured were hospitalised.
Locals had turned the flimsy structure into a mosque because access to the village's more substantial concrete-roofed mosque had been made difficult due to recent heavy rains that have swollen the Saraswati river.
Villagers rushed to help after hearing cries, Kalam said.
"It was a terrible scene. Dozens were lying on the floor – some dead, others writhing in pain," he said, adding most of the victims were young men in their 20s and 30s.
"We took the injured in three boats and headed to hospital in Dharmapasa", the closest big town, he said. "But it took hours to get there," he added.
Lightning is a major threat in Sunamganj, home to some of Bangladesh's biggest lakes. Most lightning strikes occur during the monsoon season between June and September when the district receives huge amounts of rainfall.
Across the South Asian country, hundreds of people are killed by lightning strikes every year, with most dying while attempting to save rice crops from flooding.
Bangladeshi environmentalists blame global warming, which has unleashed a growing number of tropical storms, for the increase in the frequency, devastation and deaths caused by lightning strikes in recent years.
In May last year, at least 29 people were killed – most of them farmers who were harvesting rice – and dozens injured when a series of lightning strikes hit several districts in a single day.
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by reading these comments I somehow feel that indeed the world needs to end now if people like these call themselves "human"
for people dying of sheer carelessness .... setting up microphone with car batteries in open air during a storm....that's a lightning rod....
poor uneducated people. I hope the local government there takes lesson from this and spread awareness about it..."what not to do"
you're really weird, you know that, Mr Aziz? @Aziz:
please tell me you're being sarcastic because otherwise what does it matter? @sam:
what crimes are you suggesting they committed?! @Aziz:
Nothing happens by accident and what happens is for a reason. This event is a proof for the existence of the almighty and a lesson for those who disobey. Every minute and every second you are being watched. All your bads ands goods are seen.
A 'tin-and-thatch' mosque powered by a car battery with a metal microphone on top of the roof, is a scintillating welcome to the electrifying elements for dinner. That too in the monsoon season.
This is why religion tells us to acquire education. If common sense prevailed at the time of erecting the makeshift mosque, the bingos most probably would have got up the next morning for Sehri. Now a Masjid e Shuhada inclusive of a library, should be constructed in remembrance with all solemnity. Salams
They will get the highest place in Jan ah as their soles were taken away while praying.
Most of the times, we always try to draw conclusions after hearing such a news of disaster by calling it a punishment/Azab by Allah and on the other hand Atheists/non-Muslims try to score a point by questioning the position of God in such a scenario.
These natural calamities are a natural phenomenon, it has nothing to do with the religion/beliefs/sins of the people and calling it a punishment is a foolish act.
Instead Allah has given us a mind to think about avoiding such calamities by adopting proper scientific/safety measures.Those Atheists/non-believers who think that such events prove the non-existence of Creator are also fools because logically it only questions the Kind/Unkind nature of Creator but doesn't question about His existence. (Logically)
@Ikra: um. How exactly does an unexpected lightning strike count as martyrdom?
@Zaid Hamid: and we win yet again!
Laws of science work themselves out dont see who is in front of them. A lesson to learn for fundamentalists.
Bismillah. Jabir reported: I heard Allah’s Apostle (SallAllahu'Alaihiwassalam) as saying. Every servant would be raised (in the same very state) in which he dies. What a phenomenally greatest way to die, in salat and hopefully in sajadah the highest of the high. Allahu Akbar *3.
@Baqar: hey baqar, dont take what people say to heart.learn the art of absorbing and pass it into the hands of the lord. All such accidents happen all over the world, in the form of tsunami.cyclones, hurricanes etc.,People who are heartless will bring religion into this.It was unfortunate that they were in that place .Look at it this way, they got to say their final prayers/bhajans.They are fortunate while many of us might not have that luck.
Inna Lilla ha wa inna eleh Rajeoon.
ET moderators...how can you allow such shameful comments by Indians...have you guys lost it completely....somebody bangs up ur beliefs and you let it happen in the name of freedom of speech...if that is the case than do not moderate what i have written below
Only 13 have died here, what about the hundreds that die in stampede in ur mismanaged religious bhajan melay...who orders the kill at ur end?
I wonder how writer is using this term 'Dead' every now and then instead of calling them 'Shaheed'
@Zalim singh ummm actually mister ...It is developed nations which are responsible for global warming mostly. Also what the heck does lightining have to do with global warming? It's good to be un-prejudiced sometimes and then comment. To much racism isn't good.
And how the heck does eating beef cause global warming??
@Aziz Shame on u what was their crime? celebrating ramadan?
This is a CIA, RAW, Mossad, MI5,6 conspiracy to terrorize muslims
Bangladeshi environmentalists blame global warming
Muslims are responsible fior a great extant for global warming.Over populating the earth. Eating beef.
Chopping off forests.
so the circle is full now.
by assuming there is no god, and all this was a result of a path of least resistance followed by the discharge.
or, better, you can close your eyes, by thinking like MR. aziz.
were they Sunni,Shia or Wahabi?
Allah know all and punishes with ruthlessness. These people paid for their crimes.
@Zaid Hamid: You are politicizing such a sad event.but then one must be human to feel others pain of such magnitude. obviously you are not.
How to explain this act of God on those who were offering Taraweh prayers?
Very unfortunate. Buildings should always have a lightning rod to dispel the excess charge.
HAARP used by Indians and Americans on poor East Pakistanis.