Canada: Gauri Shankar Mandir In Brampton Defaced With Anti-India Graffiti
A prominent Hindu temple in Brampton in Canada has been targeted with anti-India graffiti, causing outrage among the Indian community.
Condemning the act of vandalism at Gauri Shankar Mandir, the Indian Consulate General in Toronto said the defacing of the temple has deeply hurt the sentiments of the Indian community in Canada.
"We strongly condemn defacing of Gauri Shankar Mandir in Brampton,a symbol of Indian heritage, with anti-India graffiti. The hateful act of vandalism has deeply hurt sentiments of Indian community in Canada," the consulate office said in a statement on Monday (30 January).
The temple, which is a symbol of Indian heritage, has been left vandalised with hate-filled messages directed towards India.
"We have raised our concerns on the matter with Canadian authorities," the consulate office said.
Chandan Acharya, a Canadian MP, condemned the defacing of Gauri Shankar Mandir in Brampton and urged the authorities to take appropriate action to stop attacks on the temples in Canada.
"The attack of Gauri Shankar Mandir in Brampton is latest in attacks on Hindu temples in Canada by anti-Hindu and anti-India groups. From hatred on social media, now physical attacks on Hindu temples, what next? I call on govt at levels in Canada to start taking this seriously," Acharya tweeted, reports Times Now.
According to the reports, it is being suspected that banned terror organisation Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) and other Khalistani group could be behind the anti-India graffiti.
The SFJ later uploaded the video of defacing of Gauri Shankar Mandir on social media.
The defacing of the Hindu temple in Brampton is not an isolated incident, with at least three similar acts of vandalism recorded in Canada since last July.
Last September, the Indian Foreign Ministry has issued a strongly worded statement, saying there has been a “sharp increase” in hate crimes against Indians and other “anti-India activities” in Canada. New Delhi had urged the Canadian government to properly investigate the incidents.
Statistics Canada, the country's national statistical office, has reported a 72 percent increase in hate crimes targeting religion, sexual orientation and race in Canada between 2019 and 2021.
This has led to increased fears among minority communities, particularly the Indian community, which is the fastest-growing demographic group in Canada, accounting for almost four percent of the population.
The incident in Canada comes after spate of attacks on Hindu temples in Australia's Melbourne earlier this month.
Within two weeks, three Hindu temples - Iskcon Temple in Albert Park, historic Shiva Vishnu Temple in Carrum Down and Swaminarayan Mandir in Mill Park - were vandalised by Khalistani supporters.
India has condemned the incidents and sought action from the Australian authorities.
(With inputs from PTI)
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