The minorities of Bangladesh, especially the Hindus, were specific targets of the Pakistani Army. The Hindus, who account for three-fourths of the refugees and a majority of the dead, have borne the brunt of the Muslim military’s hatred.
It has been alleged that this widespread violence against Hindus was motivated by a policy to purge East Pakistan of what was seen as Hindu and Indian influences. The genocide and atrocities were also perpetrated by lower-ranking officers and ordinary soldiers. These “willing executioners” were fueled by an abiding anti-Bengali racism, especially against the Hindu minority.
The Hindus among the Bengalis were as Jews to the Nazis. More than 60% of the Bengali refugees who fled to India were Hindus There was widespread killing of Hindu males, and rapes of women. Members of the Hindu community who have been robbed of their lands and shops, systematically slaughtered, and in some places, their homes were painted with yellow patches marked “H”. All of this has been officially sanctioned, ordered and implemented under martial law from Islamabad. Buddhist temples and Buddhist monks were also attacked through the course of the year. Most of the massacres that took place in East Pakistan were targeted against the Hindus.
The Muzaffarabad massacre which took place on 3rd May 1971 was the massacre of the residents of predominantly Hindu village of Muzaffarabad. An estimated 300 Bengali Hindus, from 5 year old child to 80 years old men and women were killed in the massacre. More than 500 houses were burnt to ashes.In the Bakchar massacre On 21 April 1971, the Pakistan Army arrived in The village of Bakchar, Faridpur and began killing the Hindu population with the help from local collaborators. The Razakar forces attacked the Hindu inhabited portion of the Bakchar village and arrested nine Hindus.The Akhira massacre on 17 April 1971 was a massacre of the emigrating Hindus of the then Dinajpur district near Baraihat by the Pakistani army with collaboration from the local Razakar It is estimated that around 100 Hindus were killed in the massacre.The Jathibhanga massacre was one of the most devastating ones involving the persecution of Hindus. On the early morning of 23 April, the Hindus from the twelve villages of Jagannathpur, Chakhaldi, Singia, Chandipur, Alampur, Basudebpur, Gauripur, Milanpur, Khamarbhopla and Sukhanpokhari set out for India.
On their way, thousands of them gathered at a place called Jathibhanga for the onward journey. Soon after their arrival, the local collaborator blocked their exit routes. The Pakistani army, who had by then arrived in two military trucks, forced the fleeing Hindus to stand in lines and fired at them using machine guns. The killing spree went on till afternoon. The estimated casualty varies between 3,000 and 3,500.