Once again the UK Sikhs are angered and disappointed with the many faces of British media.
It has always been evident that the British media show a lack of interest in positive Sikh stories and will always sensationalise a Sikh story which always allows the mainstream to portray the negative connotations they seem to want to project.
Today’s sensational headlines of the Leamington protest stating statements such as “30 sword wielding protesters” shows the media’s real appetite to cover Sikh stories, particularly as this weekend has witnessed Remembrance Services for the battle of Saragarhi. On the contrary, the media’s interest in covering the remembrance of Saragarhi has been almost zero whilst this kind of story gets traction immediately.
A positive story generates little interest, but when a peaceful protest in a Sikh place of worship does not excite the readers, adding comments about “armed men” “blades and swords” does. The comments were probably coined by the disgruntled committee but Warwickshire Police should have been more responsible in allowing themselves to be associated with such a hateful language attacking practicing Sikhs and one of their religious obligation to wear the Kirpan.
Lazy media journalism means that news agencies are happy to copy and paste each others stories and thereby through joint venture they send the same tone out to their readers.
Jagraj Singh addresses issue:
Earlier Story by DSU:
UK’s Leamington and Spa Gurdwara went a bit far by calling Assault Rifle armed police and an estimated 30 private security guards to
remove peaceful protesters.
The protesters were letting their voices heard over the continued sacrilege of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji at the Gurdwara Sahib. The Gurdwara has a history of allowing interfaith marriages and has been working on plans to build a wedding party hall on Gurdwara grounds. The wedding party hall is opposed by most of the Sikh community in the UK as it violates Sri Akal Takht Sahib, the supreme authority of Sikhs, orders and Sikh Code of Conduct.
It’s extremely rare for the UK police to be armed and on top of that entering a religious place of worship loaded with guns and ammunition.
The BBC has misreported the facts of the incident by titling their article as‘Armed’ men occupy temple in Leamington Spa, say police”.
The fact of the matter is that Amritdhari Sikh are part of the Sikhs protesting who have a right to carry a Kirpan in the UK. Instead, the Kirpan is being viewed by the Gurdwara committee and police as a weapon.
Apparently, the committee called the police instructing them that a conflict might occur or feared violence. However, the protesters were calm and police with shoes and no head covering entered the Darbar Hall. The concerned Sikh Youth were left with no choice but to uphold the sanctity of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji and to protest peacefully at the Gurdwara Sahib.
Many on social media have alleged that their prayers were disturbed due to the protest. However, it was the armed police and private security guards putting the place of worship on lockdown rather than the protesters stopping people from entering.