Sikh taxi driver assaulted in Seattle

Updated on Dec 02, 2007 03:53 AM IST

The 48-year-old driver is in hospital for kidney and respiratory damage caused by the attack over the weekend.

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IANS | By, New York

In what the police say may have been a hate crime, a Sikh taxi driver was brutally assaulted in Seattle by a passenger.

The 48-year-old driver, Sukhvir Singh, is in a hospital for kidney and respiratory damage caused by the attack over the weekend.

The suspect, 20-year-old Luis A Vazquez, was released from custody on a $25,000 bond on Monday. He was yet to be charged, the Seattle Times has reported.

According to the police, Singh picked up the suspect in a drunken state at a football stadium on Saturday evening. Shortly into the cab ride, the fan began yelling obscenities at the driver, using racial slurs and calling him an "Iraqi terrorist".

At some point, the man began hitting the driver in the head and neck. After a while, Singh stopped the cab and got out. But the passenger followed him and continued to hit him.

The Sikh Coalition, which fights racism against Sikhs, has condemned the attack and urged prosecutors to charge the alleged attacker with hate crime.

In a statement, the Coalition quoted Singh as saying: "I am in a lot of pain and don't understand why someone would do this to me. I love America and hope that in my case justice will be done."

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