Less than half of UK population Christian; rapid growth for Muslims: Census
Fewer than half the people in England and Wales consider themselves Christian, according to the most recent census — the first time the country's official religion has been followed by a minority of the population. Britain has become less religious — and less white — in the decade since the last census, figures from the 2021 census released Tuesday by the Office for National Statistics revealed. Read more: Europe’s inflation likely hasn’t peaked, says central bank chief Lagarde Some 46.2% of the population of England and Wales described themselves as Christian on the day of the 2021 census, down from 59.3% a decade earlier. The Muslim population grew from 4.9% to 6.5% of the population, while 1.7% identified as Hindu, up from 1.5%. More than 1 in 3 people — 37% — said they had no religion, up from 25% in 2011. The other parts of the U.K., Scotland and Northern Ireland, report their census results separately. Secularism campaigners said the shift should trigger a rethink of the way religion is entrenched in British society. The U.K. has state-funded Church of England schools, Anglican bishops sit in Parliament’s upper chamber, and the monarch is “defender of the faith” and supreme governor of the church. Andrew Copson, chief executive of the charity Humanists U.K., said “the dramatic growth of the non-religious” had made the U.K. “almost certainly one of the least religious countries on Earth.” “One of the most striking things about these results is how at odds the population is from the state itself,” he said. “No state in Europe has such a religious set-up as we do in terms of law and public policy, while at the same time having such a non-religious population.” Read more: Riots in Belgium, Netherlands after Morocco win at World Cup Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell, one of the most senior clerics in the Church of England, said the data was “not a great surprise,” but was a challenge to Christians to work harder to promote their faith. “We have left behind the era when many people almost automatically identified as Christian, but other surveys consistently show how the same people still seek spiritual truth and wisdom and a set of values to live by,” he said. Almost 82% of people in England and Wales identified as white in the census, down from 86% in 2011. Some 9% said they were Asian, 4% Black and 3% from “mixed or multiple” ethnic backgrounds, while 2% identified with another ethnic group.
Attack on Hindu houses: Prime accused put on 5-day remand
A Sunamganj court on Tuesday placed Shahidul Islam Swadhin, the prime accused in a case over the attack on Hindu houses in Shalla upazila, on a 5-day remand. The court also put 29 other accused in the case on a 2-day remand each. Judicial magistrate of Sunamganj court passed the order, said inspector of Sunamganj court police Md Selim Newaz. Members of Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) arrested prime accused Swadhin, a member of Sarmangal union parishad in Dirai upazila, from Kulaura upazila in Moulvibazar district on Saturday. On March 17, Hefajat-e-Islam followers vandalised several Hindu houses in Sunamganj as a Hindu youth had "criticised the party's Joint Secretary General Maulana Mamunul Haque on social media." Also read: Hefajat supporters' attack on Hindu houses: 700 people sued A young man from Hindu community, Jhumon from Noagaon village made a Facebook post on Tuesday night. As the post went viral, police detained him with the help of locals on the same night. Shalla Police Station Officer-in-Charge Nazmul Huq said several houses in the upazila's Noagaon village were attacked. Two separate cases were filed against 700 people on Thursday over the attack on Hindu houses. One case was filed by a victim and another one by the law enforcers, he said.
Attack on Hindu houses in Sunamganj: Prime accused held in Moulvibazar
Members of Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) arrested the prime accused in a case over the attack on Hindu houses in Sunamganj's Shalla upazila from Kulaura upazila in Moulvibazar district on Saturday.