Sikhs gathered outside the Indian High Commission to protest against the killings and unrest in Punjab. The Sikhs peacefully gathered outside the Indian High Commission where the police fenced off an area along the sidewalk for the protesters.
The crowd grew larger as time went on and the space appeared too small for the large crowd and so the protests spilled onto the street. The police didn’t approve of the protest on the road and so forcibly started to remove the protesting Sikhs. Several Sikhs were reported to be arrested by the police. The riot police was already waiting in the vicinity and were quick to be deployed.
It’s quite sad that in a country like Britain, the police doesn’t approve peaceful protests.
Jasveer Singh Gill, a representative of the Sikh Press Association was quoted on the London24:
Mr Jasveer Singh Gill of the Sikh Press Association said: “Some protesters were walking into the road where they were not supposed to be, but it is unfortunate that the police decided to respond to that with a lot of aggression. “I saw with my own eyes the nishan sahib (a flag with symbolic significance for Sikhs) being snatched from one person and broken by a police officer. There is no need for that. “Women and children were being shoved. “I understand the police have a job to do, but these are provocative actions.””
Sikh Youth Derby reported the following:
Sikh Sangat was sitting down peacefully protesting when police came in very aggressively and assaulted singhs and children. 1 police officer grabbed a Nishan Sahib and broke it in half, they removed Dastar of singhs and singh is! Forcefully removed kirpan off 4 singhs. This was all at the behest of Hindustani govt when the ambassador rang the police as was sign by Sangat.
An Eyewitness named Claire Underwood reported the following:
Police sirens can still be heard echoing in Holborn outside the Indian embassy at 5:26. There’s a small fraction of undefiant protesters remaining. Why were the cavalry and riot vans bought in? Was a riot going on or was it a peaceful protest? How many innocent protesters who were exercising their right to protest are spending their night in a police cell. Since when in over 30 years have Sikh protests ever been violent? Was the force and the amount of police presence excessive? Were the police acting in a provocative manner to kettle young members of the protest group?
Were they inciting violence by coming in excessive numbers and in riot gear. Complain to the metropolitan police by calling 101 and speaking to an inspector or alternatively raise this unwarranted and excessive force by the police by complaining to IPCC. Completely excessive force used by these officers when it was clear the man in this photo being arrested had little comprehension of what was going on. He was visibly distressed as his Kirpan was stripped from him. He showed little understanding of English. By standers told him not to speak and to ask for an interpreter. He was very understandably upset.
Unbelievable excessive force used by met police, Sikhs contribute greatly to the UK economy and therefore have the democratic right to protest. A police liaison officer stated that the orders have come from above from he ilks of David Cameron and friends evidently to appease Modi so that UK can continue to prostitute itself to India.
The Met Police reported that about 20 Singhs were arrested in the protests.
Watch how 8 police officers treat 1 elderly Sikh man on the pavement and not even on the road, they just take his turban (dastar) off and throw it away like its garbage.
A 15 year old Sikh girl respectfully voicing in the protest, been taken away and arrested while being harassed by the police officers
Paji Jagmeet Singh (From BASICS OF SIKHI) trying to reason with the officers not to be so rough on “my sister”
Key bullet points for everyone:
- Met police had advance notice of protest and failed to adequately prepare barriers and road cordons.
- Large crowds had no alternative to flow on the roads
- Sit down protest was planned and conducted peacefully
- Police moved in with exaggerated force including riot police, battons and 8-10 horse mounted officers. Even after these hourses marched into crowds of women and children sikhs remained largely peaceful, but pushed the police lines back.
- Officers snatched Sikh flags Nishan Sahibs and broke then threw them on the ground, huge sign of disrespect.
- As heavy handed officers forced there way in stamping on sitting protestors, this further aggravated the situation.
- Despite agreement, commitments and orders from Cheif Inspector Nick Collins that no officer would attempt to remove Sikh Articles of faith, Sikh turbans and Kirpan for forcibly removed with out provocation.
- Dispute calls from community leader to allow women and children to leave the penned in area, the police did not allow until 2hrs later.
- 3 Young teenage girls and boys were pinned against a bus by 15 officers and were totally disrespected and had their Kirpans removed where there was no need and after all groups had been dispersed.
- The cheif inspector Nick Collins failed to note 2 serious complaints of police aggression, assault and denial of human rights, even after witnessing himself.
- The police were prepared to allow situation to escalate and arrest more people without any consideration to Sikh religious sentiments