The Asian Age – Racial attacks: Take strict action against culprits, Rajnath to Delhi cops

Asian Age Correspondent

New Delhi, 29 May 2016. Sushma Swaraj also said that a sensitization campaign will soon be launched in areas where African nationals reside.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday asked Delhi Police Chief Alok Kumar Verma to take strict action against those involved in recent attacks against African nationals. Singh, who had called Verma to his residence, expressed concern over the attacks and said stern action be taken against the perpetrators.

“Spoke to Commissioner of Police, Delhi regarding the incidents of physical assault against certain African nationals. Such incidents are condemnable,” the Home Minister said in a tweet after the meeting with Verma.

He asked Delhi Police to increase patrolling in areas inhabited by African nationals and ensure their security. “Instructed CP Delhi to take strict action against the attackers and increase patrolling in these areas to ensure security of everyone,” Singh tweeted.

In the backdrop of cases of assault on African nationals and outrage by envoys of African countries over killing of a Congolese youth, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today spoke to Singh and Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung to ensure safety of the community and strict action against the guilty.

“I have spoken to Shri Raj Nath Singh ji and Lt Governor Delhi reg attack on African nationals in South Delhi yesterday. They assured me that the culprits will be arrested soon,” Swaraj tweeted.

In the wake of attacks on African nationals in Delhi, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said she spoke to Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung and was assured that the culprits will be arrested soon.

“I have spoken to Shri Raj Nath Singh ji and Lt Governor Delhi reg attack on African nationals in South Delhi yesterday. They assured me that the culprits will be arrested soon,” Swaraj tweeted.

She also said that a sensitization campaign will soon be launched in areas where African nationals reside.

Earlier today, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) announced that it would arrange the transportation of Masunda Oliver, the African national who was brutally killed in the national capital, back to his home to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

“In the unfortunate death of Mr. Masunda Oliver, the Government will assist his family to travel to India to receive his mortal remains. We will also arrange for his mortal remains to be transported to DR Congo at our expense,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted.

Envoys of African countries on Thursday had expressed shock over killing of Oliver here last week following which India assured them of safety of African nationals.

As African envoys reacted sharply to Oliver’s killing, three cases of physical assault and criminal intimidation of African nationals in south Delhi were registered by the police.

Police attributed two of the incidents to locals raising objection to the African nationals’ playing loud music during late night, and the other to objection raised against a group of Africans consuming alcohol in public.

All three incidents had taken place on Thursday in areas under the jurisdiction of Mehrauli Police Station. The complainants in Thursday’s cases include two women, one from Uganda and the other from South Africa, and at least two Nigerian men, police said.

In a separate incident, a 23-year-old Nigerian student was attacked in Hyderabad on Wednesday night over dispute over parking.

Swaraj had taken up the issue with Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, who promised stringent action against the guilty. She had also sought an urgent report from the Telangana government over the attack.

http://www.asianage.com/india/racial-attacks-delhi-sushma-speaks-home-minister-assures-swift-action-798

Sikh24.com – Bhai Mohkam Singh Criticizes Baba Dhumma For Backing Attack On Dhadrianwala

Sikh24 Editors

Jalandhar, Panjab, 26 May 2016. The president of the United Akali Dal, Bhai Mohkam Singh, has strongly criticized Damdami Taksal Chief Baba Harnam Singh Dhumma for backing the assailants of the murderous attack on Baba Ranjit Singh Dhadrianwala. He said that the Baba Dhumma was deviating from the principles and legacy of Damdami Taksal.

Bhai Mohkam Singh’s statement came a day after Baba Harnaam Singh Dhumma held a press conference in Mehta on May 23. In the press conference, Baba Harnaam Singh Dhumma had admitted that the assailants were students of Damdami Taksal. He said that the attack had taken place due to Bhai Dhadrianwale’s attack on Damdami Taksal.

“While here I express condolences at the passing away of Baba Bhupinder Singh from Dhakki Sahib, I want to make it clear that I also respect the sentiments of the attackers and will support them in every possible way,” Baba Harnaam Singh Dhumma said on May 23.

Appealing to Baba Dhumma to rollback his stance in favour of assailants, Bhai Mohkam Singh said that the entire episode will cause vertical division among the Sikh community. Talking about the upcoming assembly elections of 2017 in Punjab, he informed us that his party was trying to make alliances with other Panthik parties to contest the election successfully.

On May 17, Bhai Dhadrianwale was on his way to a diwan at village Isewal (Mullanpur Dakha) in Ludhiana when a gang of 40 people fired gunshots at his convoy. Baba Bhupinder Singh, another Singh who dresses just like Bhai Dhadrianwale was shot dead.

Bhai Mohkam Singh Criticizes Baba Dhumma For Backing Attack On Dhadrianwala

Brussel Luchthaven – Vilvoorde

Brussel Luchthaven and Vilvoorde
27 Februari 2016

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Brussel Luchthaven – Bus Station
De Lijn bus 652 that took us from Erps to Brussel Airport
From here we went by Bus 821 to Vilvoorde

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Vilvoorde – Mattenkot

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Vilvoorde – Stadhuis (City Hall)

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Vilvoorde Gurdwara

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Main divan

Gurdwara Guru Nanak Sahib
Lange Molensstraat 14
B-1800 Vilvoorde – Vlaams Brabant
(just north of Brussel)

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Brussel Luchthaven – Bus Station
MIVB bus 21 to Luxemburgplein & station
We came here from Vilvoorde by bus 820

To see all my pictures:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/12445197@N05/

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Anti-discrimination in education and work meeting, in Gent or Vilvoorde

We are planning to have two anti-discrimination meetings, the first mainly for the sangat of the Deurne (Antwerpen), Gent and Vilvoorde gurdwaras, the second for the sangat of the three Limburg gurdwaras and Liege/Luik. I hope to have the first meeting on Saturday the 25th of June and the second one after the summer holidays.

Mata Sahib Kaur Gurdwara Gent is willing to host the 1st meeting. The Deurne gurdwara is quite small and too busy on a Saturday, but Vilvoorde is more centrally located than Gent. Please let me know what you think.

I hope that both Sikh activists and people from the Gurdwaras will attend.

This meeting fits in with Theodorus Singh’s idea to have an inventory of the students who want to wear patka or turban but are not allowed to so in school.

Sikhs also have problems finding a job when they wear a turban or patka. We have not really campaigned on this issue so far, but I think we should try to tackle that problem too.

As preparation for the meeting I have talked to Unia, the organisation that works with people who are discriminated at work or in education, with the Minderheden Forum, who have always been very supportive of the Sikhs and with Internationaal Comite Oost-Vlaanderen. Until now Sikhs have mainly worked with our friends of IC Hasselt.

We want to talk to schools and employers in order to solve cases of discrimination, we want to support those who are being excluded from education or work because of their Sikh identity.

I would like to avoid further expenses on court cases, and solve the problems through dialogue and with the support of our friends in Unia, Minderheden Forum and the Internationaal Comite.

Any questions or suggestions are welcome.

Harjinder Singh
Belgische Seva Jatha
harjindersingh_amritsar@yahoo.com

Anti-discriminatie in onderwijs en werk vergadering in Gent of Vilvoorde

We zijn van plan twee anti-discriminatie vergaderingen te organiseren, de eerste vooral voor de sangat van de Deurne (Antwerpen), Gent en Vilvoorde gurdwara’s, de tweede voor de sangat van de drie Limburgse gurdwaras en van Luik.

Ik hoop de eerste vergadering op zaterdag 25 juni te houden en de tweede na de zomervakantie.

Mata Sahib Kaur Gurdwara Gent is bereid de eerste vergadering daar te laten plaatsvinden. De Deurne gurdwara is tamelijk klein en te druk op een zaterdag, Vilvoorde is groot genoeg en meer centraal gelegen dan Gent.

Laat ons weten wat u denkt.

Ik hoop dat zowel Sikh activisten en mensen van de Gurdwara’s de vergaderingen zullen bijwonen.

Deze vergaderingen passen bij Theodorus Singh’s idee om te inventariseren hoeveel studenten de patka of tulband willen dragen op school, waar dat niet is toegelaten.

Sikhs hebben ook problemen om een baan te vinden als zij een tulband of patka dragen. We hebben tot nu toe weinig aandacht besteed aan dit onderwerp, maar ik denk dat we dat nu wel moeten doen.

Als voorbereiding op deze vergadering heb ik gesproken met Unia, de organisatie die mensen die op het werk of in het onderwijs worden gediscrimineerd ondersteund, met het Minderheden Forum, die ons altijd gesteund hebben en met het Internationaal Comité Oost-Vlaanderen.

Tot nu toe hebben wij voornamelijk samengewerkt met onze vrienden van IC Hasselt.

We willen met scholen en werkgevers praten om een einde te maken aan discriminatie, we willen mensen die uitgesloten zijn van onderwijs of werk vanwege hun Sikh identiteit ondersteunen.

Ik wil verdere uitgaven aan rechtszaken voorkomen, en problemen oplossen door dialoog en met de steun van onze vrienden in Unia, het Minderheden Forum en het Internationaal Comité.

Vragen en suggesties zijn welkom

Harjinder Singh
Belgische Seva Jatha
harjindersingh_amritsar@yahoo.com

Dawn – Two more booked for helping Mansour get identity papers

Iftikhar A. Khan

Islamabad, 29 May 2016. Two more individuals said to be involved in helping Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour to obtain Pakistani documents for his alias Wali Mohammad have been arrested.

The arrests come days after Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan admitted that officials of the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) were fraudulently ‘selling’ Pakistani citizenship to aliens and ordered a national re-verification exercise in order to remove all illegal entries in the national database.

According to an interior ministry statement, Aziz Ahmad Achakzai, a risaldar major in the Balochistan Levies Force, was arrested in Quetta for helping Wali Mohammad acquire a manual Pakistani ID card.

Achakzai, who still held the same position in Chaman, had attested the national identity card of Wali Mohammad in 2001.

Another Nadra employee was picked up in Karachi for tampering with records to secure Pakistani citizenship for Wali Mohammad’s second wife and children. The suspect, Riffat Iqbal, was serving as a superintendent with Nadra in Karachi and, according to the interior ministry statement, had disappeared after the drone attack.

Though the tampering was detected by his superiors, no action had been taken against him so far. The timing of his disappearance and his apparent link to the slain Taliban leader prompted the arrest.

The arrests came a day after the interior minister disclosed that more cases of a similar nature had been detected following the Wali Mohammad episode.

“Some startling facts have come to light,” the minister said, without divulging the name of any high-profile foreign militant who was also issued Pakistani papers. But he lamented that forged cards were distributed “like sweets” in the past and that this had been happening for well over a decade now.

On Friday, Nadra Junior Executive Syed Afsar Hassan was taken into custody for allegedly tampering with family records to pass off foreigners as Pakistani citizens. An official statement said he had been involved with a human trafficking racket as well.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1261319/two-more-booked-for-helping-mansour-get-identity-papers

The Hindustan Times Analysis: New fault lines widen Panthic rift

Chitleen K Sethi

Chandigarh, 29 May 2016. The murderous attack on Sikh preacher Ranjit Singh Dhadrianwale on May 17 by the supporters of Sikh seminary Damdami Taksal has created new fault lines among Panthic bodies in Punjab, a situation that experts believe suits political parties in the run-up to the assembly polls.

When Dhadrianwale called upon all Panthic leaders to attend the bhog ceremony of Bhupinder Singh, his follower killed in the attack, it was more than a show of strength. He was asking Panthic bodies virtually to come out clean — those who supported the government (currently the Shiromani Akali Dal) and those who were opposed.

Dhadrianwale had called the Taksal chief “sarkari sant” and during the bhog claimed that he had been targeted for speaking the “truth”.

Though many disapproved of his language, Sikh preachers Baljit Singh Daduwal and Panthpreet stood by him, as also the many who have aligned self against the “SAD-controlled” Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and the Akal Takht”.

Most groups neutral

Most politico-religious radical groups such as the Dal Khalsa and the All-India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) chose to stay neutral but United Akal Dal’s Mohkam Singh criticised Dhumma for backing the assailants .

While the SAD has been supporting the Taksal for several years now, gaining politico-religious benefits from it, the political and Panthic support gathered by Dhadrianwale in the past 10 days has put them in a precarious position.

Dhumma made his displeasure clear during his press briefing on Thursday, criticising chief minister Parkash Singh Badal for meeting Dhadrianwale, saying the government was “favouring” him.

Other than Badal, leaders of almost all parties made a beeline for Dhadrianwale’s Parmeshar Dwar headquarters near Patiala. Aam Aadmi Party national convener and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, novice otherwise to Punjab’s complicated religious fabric, also went there to ensure his party’s political future in the state was not dented.

‘Differences long-brewing’

“The division among Panthic groups has been long-brewing. Dhumma’s opponents resent his closeness to the authorities. Rehat Maryada (Sikh code) is only a pretext for voicing their resentment. Neither the Taksal nor Dhadrianwale follow the Panth Parvanat Maryada (agreed-upon code of conduct) finalised in 1946.

It suits political parties to create their vote banks on the foundation of these divisions,” says Ashok Singh, vice-president of the Institute of Sikh Studies, Chandigarh.

‘Akal Takht moved late’

Ashok Singh said the issue had brought to the fore the diminished role of the Akal Takht as primary seat of Sikh religious authority. Both Dhumma and Dhadrianwale criticised the role of the Akal Takht openly.

The Akal Takht, said Dhumma, should have stepped in early during his spat with Dhadrianwale, but it got its act together only after the attack. Takht’s advice to the two to keep quiet was dismissed and statements and videos continued from both sides.

Dhadrianwale said he had great respect for the Akal Takht but couldn’t abide by its “diktat”, as it was headed by the jathedars “rejected by the Khalsa Panth” for their exonerating Sirsa dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh of the blasphemy charge.

http://www.hindustantimes.com/punjab/ht-analysis-new-fault-lines-widen-panthic-rift-dhadrianwale-damdami-taksal-akal-takht-blasphemy-gurmeet-ram-rahim-sikh/story-9zpIsa68G9PEJ1lGRl49RN.html

The Tribune – Ours is most peaceful state, says CM Prakash Singh Badal

Archit Watts

Tribune News Service

Lambi, 28 May 2016. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today said that the state was the most peaceful and harmonious in the country. “Petty incidents can happen anytime in any part of the world,” he said on the sidelines of his sangat darshan programme in Lambi Assembly segment today.

The Congress was playing dirty politics on sensitive issues and advised its leadership to act responsibly for the betterment of the state, he said.

He dismissed the charges by the opposition on various issues and said he needed no certificate of the nine year rule of the SAD-BJP regime, but from the people of the state.

Earlier, Badal sought the support and cooperation from the farmers to counter the whitefly pest attack on cotton by destroying weeds around their fields that served as its breeding ground.

Help Badal village women, youth get jobs: Sukhbir

SAD chief and Deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal today met a number of women from his native village at his residence here. He asked his personal staff to assist the women and youngsters in getting jobs, admission in schools and colleges.

Sources said that Sukhbir later told his staff to get the details of all unemployed youth in the village, so that they can be adjusted somewhere.

Job scam: CM denies pressure on VB

Parkash Singh Badal dismissed the reports that there was pressure on the Vigilance Bureau (VB) to spare the guilty in the recruitment scam in the Local Government Department.

Asked whether the VB could conduct a free and fair probe when the names of Akali leaders were cropping up in the scam, Badal said on Saturday on the sidelines of a sangat darshan programme in the Lambi assembly segment, “Had we decided to spare the culprits, why would I have marked the probe to the Vigilance?

The law will take its own course and whosoever found guilty will be taken to task, whether he is a Congressman or an Akali.”

http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/punjab/ours-is-most-peaceful-state-says-badal/243609.html

Gent: De Lijn Trams – Mata Sahib Kaur Gurdwara; Erps to Vilvoorde

Gent: De Lijn Trams
22 February 2016

040.g.Graaf.van.Vlaanderenplein.22.02.16

Graaf van Vlaanderenplein
Tram 4

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Graaf van Vlaanderenplein
Two times tram 4

Gent Gurdwara
22 Februari 2016

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Gurduara Mata Sahib Kaur Ji
Gent Belgium

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Palki Sahib with Guru Granth Sahib

Gurdwara Mata Sahib Kaur
Kortrijksepoortstraat 49
9000 Gent, Oost Vlaanderen

Erps to Vilvoorde
27 Februari 2016

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Erps, Peperstraat, Van Hamme Huis
Near 625 bus stop

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Brussel Luchthaven Bus Station
Bus 652 Luchthaven Cargo
From here we took the 821 to Vilvoorde

To see all my pictures:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/12445197@N05/

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

Dialogue with the Free (Roman Catholic) schools in Dutch speaking Belgium

When I lived in Sint-Truiden (Limburg) I had a good relation with the coordinating directors of the RC secondary schools. They really believed in dialogue and listened to representatives of minorities. Alas, the majority of the directors of the schools had a different mentality.

Recently RC religious studies teachers-to-be came to the Gurdwara in Halmaal and it became clear that they had to learn about other traditions, not just about the Roman Catholic faith.

On the 27th of April I took part in an event in Hasselt organised by Orbit vzw for teachers of RC religious studies in the RC schools. They were really interested in learning more about other faiths.

Then on the 24th of May there was a directors/governors day for the Gent RC secondary schools, also organised by Orbit vzw.

During this meeting there also was real interest in dialogue.

After the statements by Lieven Boeve, director-general of the RC schools in Dutch-speaking Belgium, about dialogue schools, I sent him an email saying that the Sikh community was very interested in a dialogue with the RC schools.

Today I received an invitation to a meeting with him in the Guimardstraat (Brussel) on the 28th of June 2016.

All this does not mean that that shortly all our problems with the education system in this country will be solved, but there are openings and we should use these. We will keep you informed and are keen to hear what you think.

Harjinder Singh
Belgian Seva Jatha

Dialoog met de Vrije (Katholieke) scholen in Nederlandstalig Belgie

Toen ik in Sint-Truiden (limburg) woonde had ik goede contacten met de coordinerend directeurs van het RK secundair onderwijs. Zij waren echt voor dialoog, luisterden naar minderheden en dachten met ons mee. Helaas had de meerderheid van de directeurs van de scholen een andere mentaliteit.

Recentelijk hebben studenten RK Godsdienstonderwijs een bezoek gebracht aan de Halmaal Gurdwara, en toen bleek dat zij tegenwoordig ook leren over andere godsdiensten, en niet alleen over hun eigen geloof.

Op 27 april nam ik deel aan een bijeenkomst in Hasselt georganiseerd door Orbit vzw voor godsdienst leraars van het RK onderwijs. Er bleek echt belangstelling te bestaan om meer te weten over andere geloven.

Dan op 24 mei was er een directeurs/bestuurders dag uit het RK onderwijs in Gent, georganiseerd door Orbit vzw. Ook tijdens die ontmoeting bleek er interesse in echte dialoog.

Ik had na de uitspraken van Lieven Boeve, Directeur-generaal van de RK scholen in Nederlands-sprekend Belgie, over dialoog scholen een email gestuurd waarin ik zei dat de Sikh gemeenschap zeer geinteresseerd is in de dialoog met de RK scholen. Vandaag kreeg ik een uitnodiging voor een gesprek met hem op 28 juni as !

Dit alles betekent niet dat binnenkort al de onderwijs problemen van de Belgische Sikhs worden opgelost, maar er is toch beweging in de zaak. Wij houden jullie op de hoogte en horen graag reacties.

Harjinder Singh
Belgische Seva Jatha

The Hindu – Yet another attack on Africans

Police register three separate cases of assault, wrongful restraint

Shubhomoy Sikdar

New Delhi, 29 May 2016. At least seven Africans, including four women, were allegedly attacked and racially abused by a mob in Rajpur Khurd village in South Delhi’s Mehrauli on Thursday night.

The victims include a Nigerian couple and their young son, a Cameroonian brother-sister duo returning from a hospital, a Ugandan hairstylist standing outside her shop and another Nigerian young man coming from a hospital.

All the purported victims and fellow Africans living in the village have claimed that the attack was planned. However, the police described the attacks as “scuffle” between two sides.

Of those injured, 29-year-old Leuchy was the first one to be attacked around 10.30 pm and sustained a deep cut on his nose and the treatment required some stitches. Three more set of attacks were carried out by a group, variably described as consisting of 10 to 15 people armed with cricket bats, iron rods and sharp-edged weapons.

“It was as if the mob was waiting for any African who passed through the lane between 10.30 pm to 11 pm. We asked help from locals but no one came forward to save us,” said Shamira, a Ugandan woman who was returning from a church.

Another woman who did not reveal her identity but said she was half Indian was also attacked along with Shamira. All the victims The Hindu spoke to said that in each case racial slurs were used.

“They called us Habshis [a derogatory word used for Africans in Delhi] and said ‘Black Africans go back’ as they landed their blows and kicks on us,” said Vicky who along with her brother Pierres were attacked outside their house.

‘Not racial’

The police, however, denied the attacks being coordinated or racial. “Local residents had a minor scuffle with Africans as they had been playing loud music at late night hours by the Africans. The other reason was drinking in public places which the locals had objected to,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (South) Ishwar Singh.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/assaulted-and-racially-abused-victims/article8660926.ece

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