Calgary police investigate racist graffiti near Sikh gurdwara in city’s southwest

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The Sikh community is speaking out about a racist graffiti incident that is under police investigation in southwest Calgary.

On Monday night, the words “diaper heads” and “cow f—ers” were found spray-painted on the road leading to the Sikh Society of Calgary‘s Gurdwara Sahib in the West Springs neighbourhood.

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“We are extremely disappointed and saddened to hear our SW Gurdwara Sahib had Racist Graffiti sprayed outside on roads leading up to entrance,” the Dashmesh Culture Centre said in a tweet Monday night.

“While we believe this is the actions of a few, we encourage everyone to accept everyone as one and take the time to learn about your neighbors. Doors to our Gurdwara Sahib are open to all, we encourage you to visit and learn about Sikhi,” the organization said in the Twitter thread.

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“While this display of Racism is very hurtful, we want to take this time for all of us to come to together and show support to all people regardless of background or beliefs.”


Calgary police are investigating after offensive graffiti was spray-painted on the road leading into the Dashmesh Culture Centre’s Gurdwara Sahib in the southwest Gurdwara Sahib of West Springs on Monday.


Supplied

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A number of politicians shared their thoughts and decried the vandalism, including Sikh community member and Calgary Forest Lawn MP Jasraj Singh Hallan.

“Despite being called many things throughout my life for wearing a turban, I still stood proud being in Canada free to express myself.”

“I stand with the Sikh Society of Calgary in condemning this act of hatred. Canadians always stand against intolerance,” Hallan said on Twitter.

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Calgary-North East MLA and Transportation Minister Rajan Sawhney, whose own daughter was targeted in a hate attack this summer, said she was very sad, disappointed and disgusted by the behaviour.

“(Dashmesh Culture Centre), you have been a beacon of hope for so many, particularly during Covid. Please continue in Chardi Kala and keep inspiring, educating and encouraging others!” the minister said in a tweet.

In Sikhism, chardi kala is the Punjabi saying for having a positive attitude or keeping one’s spirit high — for aspiring to maintain a mental state of eternal optimism and joy.


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Edmonton Mill Woods MP Tim Uppal, also a member of the Sikh faith, said it’s “extremely frustrating and disappointing to see hate-filled acts, like this, continuing to litter our country.”

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“I stand with the Sikh Society of Calgary in condemning these actions in the strongest terms, and stand with Canadians against intolerance and hate,” he said on Facebook Tuesday morning.

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The Calgary Police Service diversity unit is working closely with the community, CPS confirmed.

“This action is unacceptable and we are committed to conducting a thorough investigation to hold the responsible parties accountable,” police said in a tweet.




© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.





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