Toronto: A Hindu Temple in Brampton in Canada has been defaced with anti-India graffiti triggering outrage among the Indian community.
The Indian Consulate General in Toronto on Monday (local time) condemned the vandalism at the Gauri Shankar Mandir stating that the act has deeply hurt the sentiments of the Indian community in Canada.
The consulate office in a statement said “We strongly condemn the defacing of Gauri Shankar Mandir in Brampton, a symbol of Indian heritage, with anti-India graffiti. The hateful act of vandalism has deeply hurt the sentiments of the Indian community in Canada. We have raised our concerns on the matter with Canadian authorities.”
The Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown has condemned the vandalism and the Canadian authorities are investigating the incident.
“This hateful act of vandalism has no place in our City or Country,” adding that he had raised his concerns over this hate crime with Peel Regional Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah,” the Brampton Mayor tweeted.
“Everyone deserves to feel safe in their place worship,” the Brampton Mayor said.
This is not the first time that a temple was vandalized in Canada. Earlier in September 2022, BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Canada was defaced by ‘Canadian Khalistani extremists’ with anti-India graffiti.
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 Indian community’s sentiments in Canada.We’ve raised concerns on it with Canadian authorities:Consulate General of India,Toronto
— ANI (@ANI) January 31, 2023
Chandra Arya, Member of Parliament, Canada 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.
Also, a statue of Mahatma Gandhi at the Vishnu Mandir in Richmond Hill in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) was defaced in July 2022.
In both instances, pro-Khalistan slogans were painted and the vandalization was promoted on social media by pro-Pakistan handles.
Meanwhile on January 29 in men from alleged pro-Khalistani groups attacked Indians carrying the national flag in their hands in Melbourne, Australia.
The Indian group was seen running away from the scene while the Khalistani group continued to hit them. One individual was seen breaking an Indian flag and throwing it on the floor.
Indian High Commissioner to Australia, Manpreet Vohra today visited the Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple in Melbourne and condemned its “vandalization” by “pro-Khalistani elements.” He also said that the “place of worship has always been revered by all communities and faiths.”
Earlier, Indian envoy Vohra paid his respects at the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Melbourne and discussed the community’s concerns over the temple’s recent vandalization. The violence witnessed in Melbourne on Sunday was also discussed.
BAPS Swaminarayan Temple in the Mill park area of Melbourne was allegedly vandalized by anti-India elements with anti-India slogans written on the walls of the temple, located in the suburb of Mill Park, The Australia Today reported.