HomeAmericasCrimeSikh Teen Says He Is Angered, Shaken By Attack On NYC Bus

Sikh Teen Says He Is Angered, Shaken By Attack On NYC Bus

Sikh Teen Says He Is Angered, Shaken By Attack On NYC Bus

Sikh Teen Says He Is Angered, Shaken By Attack On NYC Bus

NEW YORK, NY (IANS) – The Sikh teen who was punched multiple times here, said that he was left “angered and shaken by the attack”.

The 19-year-old was riding on a shuttle bus on October 15 morning near 118th Street and Liberty Avenue in Richmond Hill when a suspect attacked and attempted to remove his turban.

“I am shaken and angered by this attack. I believe that no one should be assaulted or harassed because of how they look, and everyone should be able to go about their business in public in peace,” the teen said in a statement to the US-based Sikh Coalition.

Wishing to remain anonymous, he thanked “everyone from different communities who have spoken out in support of me as well as the authorities who are taking this hate crime seriously.”

The Sikh Coalition has since connected with the young man to offer legal aid and other support. It remains in contact with both the teen and the New York Police Department about the ongoing investigation into his attacker.

Releasing a picture, the NYPD described the suspect as “a male, 25-35 years of age, dark complexion, slim build, approximately 5’9 tall, with brown eyes and black hair”.

“We don’t wear that in this country,” the suspect had told the victim, pointing at his turban, following which he punched the young Sikh several times and tried to remove it.

He then got off the bus and fled, the NYPD said, urging the public to help in nabbing the suspect.

“Given that this young Singh’s turban was insulted and targeted during the attack, we are heartened that this incident is being investigated as a hate crime,” Sikh Coalition Staff Attorney, Amreen Partap Singh Bhasin, said in a statement.

Highlighting the case of six-year-old Palestinian-American boy Wadea Al-Fayoume in Illinois, who was stabbed 26 times recently in the wake of Israel-Palestine tensions, Bhasin stated that national and international events are contributing to a climate of anxiety among our and other communities.

“The fact remains that Sikhs remain disproportionately at risk for attacks like this one, as evidenced by the FBI’s latest hate crime data released just this week,” Bhasin said.

Releasing its annual report of hate crime statistics in 2022 y, the FBI recorded 198 cases of anti-Sikh hate crime victimization. Stating that religiously motivated hate crime victimization was at its highest with a 17 percent increase since 2021, the FBI said that Sikhs still remain the second-most targeted group in the nation.

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  • The Sikhs are possibly victims of a double whammy. In addition to being victims of racial hatred of brown-skinned foreigners and Indians in particular, the also face the added burden of being mistaken as Muslims, for whom there is a greater dee-seated hatred, particularly after 9-11.

    October 19, 2023
  • Whenn Sikhs are faced with danger from attackers, they should shout out that they are not Muslims, and their religion was founded in India and preaching against violence.

    October 19, 2023
    • Agreed. Unfortunately, there is so much ignorance and lack of education about different faiths, that should be made available within communities across this nation.

      October 19, 2023
  • Joining and attending events of Interfaith Organizations is one way to educate the public about different religions and their beliefs.

    October 19, 2023
  • It is a mistake for us as Sikhs to protest that we should be spared because we are not Muslims. In doing so, we are implying that if we were Muslims, such an attack would be comprendable. Our reaction should never be to throw another marginalized community under the bus.

    October 21, 2023

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