Media Inquiries

Primary Press Contact: Jagmeet Singh
Media & Communications Manager, the Sikh Coalition
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 919-260-5500

Secondary Press Contact: Mark Reading-Smith
Media & Communications Director, the Sikh Coalition
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 202-380-8489.

Sikh Hero Who Helped Capture Terror Suspect Speaks Out

September 20, 2016 (Linden, New Jersey) - Harinder Singh Bains, the man who correctly identified bombing suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami yesterday in New Jersey, made a statement to reporters at 11:30am EST:

"When I heard about the attacks and realized the suspect was sleeping in a doorway across the street, I did what any American would do. I called the police. I'm not a hero. The police are heroes; the EMTs are heroes; everyone who is working to bring New York and New Jersey together today is a hero.

As a Sikh American, I realize that I could have been mistaken for the perpetrator. My faith teaches me justice and tolerance for all, and I know that I'm lucky to live in a community that shares this view. I want to remind Americans that after an attack, we should target people based on evidence, not their faith or their country of origin or their accent. I came to this country from India 20 years ago to create a better life for my family. I am a father of four and a proud American citizen. I am also what America looks like.

New Jerseyans stick together after something like this, and I know that we're all strongest as a nation when we stand together in the face of violence that is intended to divide us."

On September 19th at 6:30am, Harinder Singh Bains unlocked the door of his deli when he noticed Rahami sleeping in a vestibule next to a tavern across the street. Bains later recognized his face from television reports following the failed attacks and contacted police. When police arrived, Rahami allegedly shot an officer in the abdomen and began a shoot-out with police that led to his arrest. Harinder Singh Bains is a father of four children and emigrated from Chandigarh, India in 1996. He is 51 years old.

Bains has very limited availability today for phone interviews. To learn more about his availability, please contact Mark Reading-Smith at the Sikh Coalition: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (202) 380-8489.

 

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About the Sikh Coalition

The Sikh Coalition is a community-based organization that works towards the realization of civil and human rights for all people. In particular, we work towards a world where Sikhs may freely practice and enjoy their faith while fostering strong relations with their local community wherever they may be.

We pursue our mission by:

  • Providing direct legal services to persons whose civil or human rights are violated;
  • Advocating for law and policies that are respectful of fundamental rights;
  • Promoting appreciation for diversity through education; and
  • Fostering civic engagement in order to promote local community empowerment

With a full-time staff of 12 and offices in New York City, Fremont, CA and Washington D.C., we are the most-staffed Sikh organization in the history of the United States.

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