Indian-origin Sikh taxi driver assaulted at US airport in suspected hate crime

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Jan 08, 2022, 06:52 PM(IST)

Hate crime outside JFK airport Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

A video has gone viral on social media, showing an unidentified man using expletives and repeatedly throwing punches on the Indian-origin man, causing his turban to fall on the ground

A cab driver from the Sikh community was assaulted outside the JFK International Airport in New York in yet another case of hate crime in the United States.

A video has gone viral on social media, showing an unidentified man using expletives and repeatedly throwing punches on the Indian-origin man, causing his turban to fall on the ground.

The undated 26-second video was uploaded by Navjot Pal Kaur on Twitter on January 4. She said the video was shot by a bystander at the airport.

“This video was taken by a bystander at John F. Kennedy International Airport. I do not own the rights to this video. But I just wanted to highlight the fact that hatred continues to remain in our society and unfortunately I've seen Sikh cab drivers get assaulted again and again,” Kaur tweeted.

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Further details about the driver or the cause of the incident were not available.

The video led to angry reactions by the community members.

Indian politician and member of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party Manjinder Singh Sirsa urged Indian Ambassador to the US Taranjit Singh Sandhu to address the issue immediately

“Sikh sentiments hurt seeing racial attack at a Sikh taxi driver in NY! His dastaar removed outside JFK airport. Urging @SandhuTaranjitS Ji to address issue of lawlessness & Sikhs being targeted in US Hate crimes are agnst “Sarbat Da Bhala” philosophy (sic),” he tweeted.

The National Sikh Campaign also condemned the incident.

“We are only a few days into the new year and there has already been a hate crime committed against a Sikh. No additional details have been released outside of the video, but we know this story too well.”

“A Sikh person goes about their daily lives only to be senselessly attacked by someone. Common road rage between people can escalate when someone who is ignorant of who we are takes their disdain for our turbans and becomes violent,” it said.

This is not the first time a Sikh taxi driver has been assaulted in the US.

In 2019, an Indian-origin Sikh Uber driver was assaulted and racially abused in Washington in a suspected hate crime. The driver told the police that he believes his race promoted the attack.

In 2017, a 25-year-old Sikh cab driver in New York was assaulted and his turban knocked off by drunk passengers.

(With inputs from agencies)

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