Calgary MP says-alleged assault of 89-year-old Sikh was hate crime

Meeshika Sharma
New Update

Deepak Obhrai, a Calgary MP is speaking out against intolerance after one of his constituents was allegedly assaulted.MP Deepak Obhrai condemned the act of violence in a press conference on Friday.

On March 16, Harjit Singh Rai was on his way to shop for groceries at a No Frills store in the northeast neighbourhood of Temple.

The 89-year-old man is a Sikh and was wearing a turban.As he was getting out of his car that afternoon, he was approached by a stranger.

The white man, about 45-years-old, allegedly pushed Rai multiple times until he fell to the ground, knocking the turban from his head and injuring his hand and head. Rai was assisted by a passerby and taken to hospital. He has since been recovering at home.


Rai's son, Suritam Rai, described his father as a local businessman and a respected member of the community. ​He said that in their 35 years in Canada, they've never experienced a situation like this before.publive-image

He said, "The family feels he was attacked because he was the only turban-wearing Sikh in the parking lot and there were no other issues.I personally think that this was a hate crime incident."

It is the second reported attack against a Sikh in Canada this month.

Calgary police confirmed that one man has been charged in relation to the incident. The incident will be reviewed by the police hate crimes co-ordinator to determine if there was evidence that hate was a motivation, police said in a release.



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