FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sikh Coalition Engages in New York City Case of Assaulted Sikh Teen
October 18, 2023 (New York, NY) — On Sunday, a 19-year-old Sikh man was struck repeatedly while riding a New York City MTA bus. His turban was specifically targeted, and the perpetrator used xenophobic language throughout the incident.
The Sikh Coalition has since connected with the young man to offer legal aid and other support. Though he wishes to remain anonymous, he issued the following statement:
“I am shaken and angered by this attack. I believe that no one should be assaulted or harassed because of how they look, and everyone should be able to go about their business in public in peace. While I wish to keep my privacy at this time, I thank everyone from different communities who has spoken out in support of me as well as the authorities who are taking this hate crime seriously.”
The Sikh Coalition remains in conversation with both the young man and the New York Police Department (NYPD) about the ongoing investigation into his attacker. Sikh Coalition Staff Attorney Amreen Partap Singh Bhasin (she/her) issued the following statement:
“Given that this young Singh’s turban was insulted and targeted during the attack, we are heartened that this incident is being investigated as a hate crime. While there is no doubt that national and international events are contributing to a climate of anxiety among our and other communities—especially given the horrific news out of Illinois this weekend—we do not at this time see a direct connection between this attack and external events. Nonetheless, the fact remains that Sikhs remain disproportionately at risk for attacks like this one, as evidenced by the FBI’s latest hate crime data released just this week.”
We look forward to continuing to provide updates on this case.
For more than 20 years, the Sikh Coalition has provided pro bono legal support to Sikhs who experience bias, bigotry, and backlash in the United States. Though the young man in question is not available for interviews, you may contact email@example.com for more information about this case or to be connected with either our legal and policy experts or Sikh community leaders in Queens.