New Delhi: A Hindu temple in California was defaced with pro-Khalistan and anti-India slogans. The photos of the defacement at Newark’s Swaminarayan Mandir Vasana Sanstha were shared on X (formerly) by the Hindu-American Foundation.
The images showed slogans against India and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on several walls of the temple. The organisation said that the hateful messages may have been written to traumatise people visiting the temple and also create a “fear of violence”.
A case has been filed with the Newark Police Department and the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.
ndia strongly condemned the incident and said that it has sought quick action.
“We strongly condemn the defacing of SMVS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir at Newark, California with anti-India graffiti. This incident has hurt the sentiments of the Indian community. We have pressed for quick investigation and prompt action against the vandals by the US authorities in this matter,” Indian Embassy said on X (formerly Twitter).
This is not the first time a Hindu temple has been targeted, as similar incidents have occurred in the past, both in the US and its neighboring Canada. India has earlier expressed concern over escalating activities by Khalistan supporters and clamped down on organisations and individuals trying to stoke separatist sentiment in different countries.
In August, a temple in Canada’s Surrey was vandalised allegedly by Khalistani supporters. Pro-Khalistan posters were put up on the walls and the gate of the Lakshmi Narayan Mandir, in Surrey – one of the oldest temples in British Columbia.
The posters called for Canada to investigate India’s “role” in the death of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18.
Canada accused India of having a role in Nijjar’s killing but hasn’t yet provided India with evidence for the allegations. The US has also arrested an Indian for alleged involvement in a plot to murder Khalistan terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun.
India has called the allegations false and baseless, claiming that they will investigate if the countries provide proof.
“If someone gives us any information, we will definitely look into it,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently told the Financial Times.
“If a citizen of ours has done anything, good or bad, we are ready to look into it. Our commitment is to the rule of law,” PM Modi said
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Kashmir Monitor staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)