U.S. Congressman Condemns Racist Attack On Sikh American

Wednesday, 06 August 2014, 21:47 IST
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WASHINGTON: A top American Congressman expressed deep concern over the attack on a 29-year-old Sikh man in New York City and sought assistance of Justice Department and the FBI in such cases.

The victim, Sandeep Singh, was critically injured when he was hit by a pick-up truck last week and dragged nearly 30 feet on a public street in Queens, following an argument with the driver who used racist language against him and his friend.

"I'm deeply concerned about the events that took place last week here in Queens, and I wish Mr Singh a speedy recovery," said Congressman Joe Crowley, a leader on Sikh-American issues who spearheaded the effort to encourage the Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI to begin tracking and quantifying hate crimes against Sikhs.

"Two years after the massacre in Oak Creek, it is clear that the Sikh community is still facing the threat of violence, and this kind of continued hate and these attacks against Sikh Americans must come to an end," he said in a statement.

"I hope the Department of Justice and FBI can offer assistance in this case, including using the updated system for specifically tracking hate crimes against Sikhs. The intolerance and ignorance that contributed to the attack on Mr Singh is unacceptable, and we must continue to work to end these hate crimes," Crowley said.

Over the past three years, Crowley has led a major effort in the US House of Representatives to convince the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to begin collecting data on hate crimes committed against Sikh-Americans and Hindu-Americans ? introducing legislation and sending multiple letters to the DOJ and FBI.

Last year, the then FBI Director Robert Mueller announced the agency would begin this program.

Crowley's efforts have been supported by the Sikh Coalition, American Jewish Committee, Anti-Defamation League, Hindu American Foundation, Indian American Forum for Political Education, SALDEF, and South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) among other leading national organisations.

Source: PTI