The Indian mission in Canada described the “vandalism” of the Shri Bhagavad Gita park sign as a “hate crime.” An examination of incidents in which locals attacked Indians, from vandalism of the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir to racial assaults
The Canadian authorities denied the crime was malicious when the Indian mission in Canada reported the vandalism of a sign at a park with the name Bhagavad Gita.
The Indian High Commission in Ottawa described it as a “hate crime” and stated in a statement on Sunday, October 2: “We condemn the hate crime at the Shri Bhagavad Gita Park in Brampton. We implore Peel Police and Canadian authorities to look into the incident and act quickly against the offenders.
It was renamed Shri Bhagavad Gita park and unveiled on September 28 in Brampton, Ontario. It was formerly known as Troyer’s park.
The blank sign was left during the repair work, according to confirmation from Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown on Twitter. “We acted quickly to conduct a thorough investigation after hearing reports of vandalism at the freshly opened Shri Bhagavad Gita Park yesterday. Until the permanent Shri Bhagavad Gita Park sign can be changed tomorrow, the builder built the allegedly blank sign, according to information we gathered, he tweeted on Sunday.
“The empty sign was still up while we made repairs. We never take down a sign unless it is broken or its name changes, so this is not a typical procedure, he added in another tweet.
“We have zero tolerance for this,” Brown had earlier declared in response to the suspected vandalism. He eventually removed the post and shared the Parks Department of Brampton’s explanation, though.
An important Hindu temple was reportedly damaged with anti-Indian graffiti earlier in September in what appears to have been a “hate crime.”
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) warned Indian citizens traveling to Canada on September 23 to exercise caution due to a “sharp surge in hate crimes, sectarian violence, and anti-India activities.”
Here, we’ll examine recent crimes committed in Canada against Indians.
A “tit for tat” action, perhaps? Explanation of Canada’s travel advice for Indians.
In Canada’s Abbotsford, a man named Ravi Duhra experienced bigotry in the month of October 2016. During a confrontation over parking violations, a white man hurled racial epithets at Duhra, asking him to “get back to ****ing India.” This incident was reported by India Today.
An Indian-origin couple was harassed by a “racist” white man in July 2018 at the Walmart Supercentre in Hamilton, Ontario. He ordered them to “go back to your country” and threatened to “murder” their children.
On February 28, 2021, fighting broke out at the Indian diaspora’s “Tiranga and Maple” car rally in Brampton. The march to commemorate the arrival of COVID-19 vaccinations developed in India in Canada drew close to 350 vehicles. According to South Asia Monitor, pro-Khalistan activists, however, interfered with the gathering and harassed the attendees.
“The victim, a 40-year-old Brampton lady, was in the vicinity of Mississauga Road and Queen Street with her husband driving in a rally on Sunday, February 28, 2021, at about 4:00 pm. A man then moved in front of the car during this period. After the victim got out of her car, there was a fight, and she was then attacked. According to a police statement quoted by Hindustan Times, she was unharmed (HT).
According to HT, a 27-year-old male was detained and accused with assault for the event in March 2021.
23-year-old Indian student Prabhjot Singh Katri was killed in an apartment in Truro, Massachusetts, in September 2021, possibly as the result of a hate crime.
In Truro, Katri worked as a waitress and for a cab company. In 2017 he had relocated from India to Canada to pursue his higher studies. In relation to the murder, three guys were charged.
Frontline Radio host Deepak Punj was attacked in February 2022 as he attempted to enter his studio facility. He had criticised the use of anti-Indian chants and flags during a vigil in the GTA town of Brampton the day before the attack.
They questioned me about if I had a show on the subject before attacking me, he said to HT.
Indian student Kartik Vasudev, 21, was shot and killed in Toronto in April of this year by Richard Jonathan Edwin, 39.
Kartik was approached by a stranger last Thursday as he stood right outside the Sherbourne subway station…
Kartik was shot numerous times by this person without provocation, killing him, Toronto Police Service chief James Ramer was reported as saying by PTI.
Kartik, who was born and raised in Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, relocated to Canada in January for academic reasons.
In August 2022, three armed assailants in Toronto attacked Punjabi television personality Joti Singh Mann.
The attackers pummelling Mann, a radio broadcaster and real estate agent, in his driveway in the Greater Toronto Area community of Brampton (GTA). According to Hindustan Times, the attackers also used a small axe to smash the windows of Mann’s car.
Police, according to CTV News, thought Mann was a victim of a “targeted attack.”
Increase in vandalism crimes
The historical Komagata Maru memorial in Vancouver’s Coal Harbour was vandalized in August 2021 with white paint. According to TheWire, the Punjabi diaspora called it a “racist attack.”
Yuniar Kurniawan was charged with vandalizing the monument.
At the Vishnu Mandir in Richmond Hill, in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), a statue of Mahatma Gandhi was vandalized in July 2022. A pro-Khalistani slogan may have been sprayed on the statue in an effort to stoke tensions between Hindus and Sikhs in Canada, an Indian official told Hindustan Times.
Graffiti against India was written on the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir, which a Canadian MP attributed to “Khalistani radicals.”
“We vehemently condemn the anti-India graffiti that was daubed on the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Toronto. have asked Canadian authorities to look into the event and act quickly against those responsible, according to the Indian High Commission.
Hindu Canadians are “legitimately concerned,” according to Liberal Party MP Chandra Arya, following a number of instances of temple damage.
With inputs from agencies