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Monday, May 29, 2023

BAPS Mandir in Toronto, Canada defaced with pro-Khalistan, anti-Bharat slogans; temple appeals for peace

A BAPS Swaminarayan temple in Toronto, Canada has been defaced with pro-Khalistan and anti-Bharat slogans in yet another anti-Hindu hate crime from the Anglosphere. Videos showed ‘Khalistan Zindabad, Hindustan Murdabad’ painted on the walls of the temple.

Indian High Commission in Ottawa has condemned the acts of vandalism and urged the Canadian authorities to take necessary action. 

Sikh activist Puneet Sahani, who routinely busts Khalistani propaganda, called out this hate crime and challenged Canadian politicians to tackle this ugly extremism head on by tweeting, “Can @PierrePoilievre assure his Conservatives wouldn’t indulge in identity-politics? Can his deputy @TimUppal condemn this act unequivocally & assure that he’d not overlook Khalistan extremism when in power?”

Chandra Arya, a Canadian Member of Parliament, also tweeted, “Vandalism of Toronto BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir by Canadian Khalistani extremists should be condemned by all. This is not just an isolated event. Canadian Hindu temples have been targeted in the recent past by these kinds of hate crimes. Hindu Canadians are legitimately concerned.”

The BAPS mandir in Toronto has issued an appeal for peace

“We are shocked and saddened by the anti-India graffiti at the gates of the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Toronto, Canada by anti-social elements. The BAPS temple in Toronto, like all temples of BAPS worldwide, is an abode of peace, harmony, equality, selfless service, and universal Hindu values.
At this critical time, His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj, the spiritual leader of the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, has prayed for peace and unity and has appealed to all devotees and well-wishers to maintain peace.
We are thankful to the appropriate authorities, including the governments of India and Canada, for their continued support and sympathy. Let us all join in worldwide prayers, in private and at home, that God blesses and guides us all to continue to do good and think good of all.”

Hindu temples have faced a string of attacks, including both vandalism and robberies, in Canada, USA, UK and Australia in recent years. In February, 6 Hindu temples were vandalized or burgled in Toronto within a span of just 10 days. In August, a Hindu temple in New York, USA was vandalized. In September last year, a Hindu temple in Swindon, UK was desecrated and burgled for the fifth time.

Apart from this, there have been several racial attacks on Hindus in recent times, including one shocking Hinduphobic tirade by a Khalistani supporter at a Taco Bell fast food joint in California, USA. Khalistani sympathizers living in the West have also abused and provoked Hindus over the anti-farm law protests.

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