‘Your turban does not mean terrorism’ says NYC Mayor Adams


He also gave a clarion call for educating people about Sikhism.

Our Bureau

New York City, NY

“You are not about terror; you are about protector. That is what needs to be taught throughout this entire city. Our young people need to know that, our adults need to know that,” Adams said while addressing members of the Sikh community at the Baba Makhan Shah Lubana Sikh Centre in the Queens neighbourhood of South Richmond Hill.

Describing the Sikh community as an ‘anchor’ in the Richmond Hill neighbourhood, Adams said: “Your turban does not mean terrorism. It means protecting, it means community, it means family, it means faith, it means city, it means us coming together. We will change the dialogue and narrative with you. We can do it together.”   

Adams and New York State Assemblywoman Jenifer Rajkumar met and addressed members of the Sikh community, as there were incidents of hate crime and assault against Sikhs reported in quick succession.

On October 15, a 19-year-old Sikh boy was attacked by Christopher Philippeaux, while he was riding the bus in Richmond Hill. Philippeaux has been charged with assault as a hate crime and aggravated harassment. Within few days, 66-year-old Jasmer Singh was attacked when his car collided with another vehicle. Singh later succumbed to his injuries. 

Describing the attack against Singh as a “violent senseless act”, Adams said, “Jasmer should still be with us. He should still be with his son. He should still be living out the American dream, watching his son, who’s now an immigration attorney.

Describing Sikhs as “protectors” of society, Rajkumar asserted that the hateful targeting of Sikhs is “not acceptable” and perpetrators of such violence would be prosecuted to the fullest extent of law.

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