Man arrested in connection with UK gurdwara hate crime
LONDON: A man charged with burglary and causing thousands of pounds of damage in the Guru Arjan Dev Gurdwara in Derby has been arrested and remanded to prison custody on Tuesday, the Derbyshire police said.
Mohammed Ibrar, 31, who was also involved in an alleged stabbing in a shop after the gurdwara incident, appeared before Southern Derbyshire magistrates’ court. The police said they were called just before 8.40am on Monday to reports that the Guru Arjan Dev Gurdwara in Stanhope Street had been broken into. Another call minutes later said a man had been stabbed inside a shop in Normanton Road. A 41-year-old man was found injured.
Chief superintendent David Cox said: “I know this is a very upsetting incident not only because this is a place of worship but the alleged actions of the individual involved have a wider impact across the community”.
“I am taking this incident very seriously and I have a team of detectives who are working through the full circumstances of what has taken place”.
“This is being treated as a hate crime. Throughout yesterday and today we have been in continued dialogue with the Sikh community and local officers will be more visible in the area to make sure both those associated with the Gurdwara and the wider community feel safe”.
The attack on gurdwara was deplored by many in the community. Labour MP Preet Kaur Gill regretted the incident: “Very sad to see an attack on any place of worship. Thoughts are with the Derby sangat who have been providing 500 meals a day from Guru Arjan Dev Gurdwara”.
The Indian consulate in Birmingham said: “We are deeply saddened by the attack…We hope all communities will stand together in this time of difficulty to maintain peace & harmony in the spirit of universal brotherhood”.
The gurdwara said the hatecrime would not deter it from its ‘seva’ and ‘simran’: “We will continue the service the community with Langar and continue to stream live nitnem (daily prayers). We will ensure the safety of all our Sevadhaars (volunteers) and employees”.