Chandigarh: Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has assured Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh of the Centre’s commitment to “help and protect all Indian citizens abroad.”
Swaraj also said, in response to Captain Amarinder’s concern over the killing of yet another Sikh youth in a suspected hate crime case in the US, that she had spoken to the Indian ambassador in Washington Navtej S. Sarna on the issue.
The union minister was responding to Captain Amarinder’s tweet on the killing and his plea for her help to protect the Sikhs living abroad.
The chief minister was seriously concerned over the recent spurt in hate crimes against Indians, particularly Sikhs, settled in the US and other parts of the world. The growing intolerance against Indians, which frequently got translated into racist attacks, especially against the Sikh community, needed to be nipped, Captain Amarinder feels, adding that the protection of Indians abroad was an issue that the central government needed to take up in right earnest.
The central government should take up the issue at the highest levels with governments in the US and other countries that have witnessed such senseless killings in recent month, the Chief Minister has demanded. The United States alone has witnessed several such attacks on Sikhs, who have been at the receiving end of the growing bigotry in the country, he pointed out, demanding immediate steps to ensure their protection.
The Indian government, said the Chief Minister, needed to adopt a more proactive stance to bring pressure on the US government to crack down on racist elements and provide fool-proof protection to the Sikh community.
Observing that most of the anti-Sikh racist attacks were a case of mistaken hate crimes, Captain Amarinder said the governments in the US and other countries should take initiatives to create awareness among their people about the religious identity and beliefs of the Sikh community, which has always played a major role in the development of whichever country they have settled in.
— PTC News