The Indian community in Southall and the local police are mystified about the identity of a nine-year-old Sikh boy, Gurinder Singh, found abandoned at a clinic in the locality last Tuesday.
With the help of an interpreter, Gurinder said he was left at a bus stop in Southall by his “white” uncle, whose name he does not know. The man is slim and around 30 years old. The boy’s parents are dead.
Gurinder looks well-fed, was found wearing clean clothes and does not seem nervous. He does, however, appear confused. He claims he has been in the UK for three years, but strangely, does not know anyone from the Sikh community.
The boy says he stayed in a three-bedroom house with his uncle but is unable to say where. All he knows is that he travelled by bus to Southall, where his uncle left him. He then walked into the clinic and sat watching TV, until staff realised he was by himself and raised an alarm. The police have appealed to the community and the media to spread the word.
Local residents told the Hindustan Times that white should not be presumed to be English. “Many Punjabis are very fair. The man
could even be an Arab,” said an old gentleman who resides in the locality.
Ealing and Southall MP Virendra Sharma said: “I am keeping track of the investigation. I have told police to get in touch me if there is anything I can do.”
Krishna Bhatia, a community leader and activist said, “Gurinder may have been brought here by someone posing as his parent.”
Two prominent members of the Sikh community agreed with Bhatia. They said Gurinder may have been intentionally abandoned by his family in the hope of a better life for the boy in Britain. Police are investigating whether Gurinder is a victim of child trafficking. Superintendent Ian Jenkins, who is leading the investigation, said: “Gurinder was tired when we found him. We are interviewing him gradually. He may be in shock…”