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Sikh leader Manjit Singh attacked by group of 25 people in California

Updated: Aug 26, 2018 23:44 IST

Faridkot: Shiromani Akali Dal leader Manjit Singh GK was attacked by a group of 25 people outside the Yuba City Gurdwara in California on Sunday.

Sources said although the Sikh leader escaped, the attackers managed to relieve him of his turban. He went on to pay obeisance at the gurdwara.

Singh — who is also the president of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) — was earlier mobbed by protesters in New York.

In a video message, Singh said he had come to pay obeisance at the gurdwara with members of the Sikh diaspora when he was attacked by a group of 25 people. “With God’s grace, I am fine. I did not break the rules of the gurdwara,” he added.

Singh said the attack will not stop him from serving the community.

Condemning such attacks on the Sikh community, DGMC general secretary Manjinder Singh Sirsa said disrespecting the turban was not in good taste because it represented the Guru and not an individual. “These people are respecting those who killed Sikhs and attacking those who are working for the goodwill of Sikhism,” he added.

Sirsa said he spoke to Singh over the phone after the incident. The local police have arrested a few people involved in the attack.

Manjit Singh GK had claimed on Tuesday that he and his family members were attacked by Khalistan supporters outside a New York TV studio. On August 20, members of the Sikh Coordination Committee East Coast (USA) protested against him outside a city gurdwara in connection with the Bargari shootout.

Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Badal also condemned the attack on his party member, and blamed Pakistan’s spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) for it, news agency ANI reported.

“An unarmed Manjit Singh GK was paying obeisance at the Gurughar when he was attacked brutally by more than 20 hired goons backed by the ISI. These cowards can’t be Sikhs,” he said.

“This attack has been done on behest of ISI who are anti-India, against stability of Punjab and want to create a wedge between Sikhs,” he said, adding he has requested external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj to take up the matter with her American counterpart.

“Manjit was there to spread the message of Sri Guru Nanak Devji and to talk about the 550th GuruPurab celebrations. However, the goons want to spread terrorism. The Shiromani Akali Dal will not be cowed down by terrorism. We will continue to stand on the principles of Sikhism,” Badal said.

First Published: Aug 26, 2018 18:35 IST