LOS ANGELES, Ca.: The Sikhs of America have strongly reacted to the treatment being meted out to Jasbir Singh Bajwa by the Immigration Detention Center, Los Angeles, especially its refusal to allow him to wear turban, kara and kanga (comb). Mr. Bajwa who happens to be a vegetarian, is being forced to take no vegetarian food.

Mr, Jasbir Singh Bajwa who ‘was previously lodged in Loredo Jail, Texas, has been recently shifted to Immigration Detention Center, Los Angeles for an apparent bid to deport him to India.

Mr. Lakhbir Singh Chima, an Ex-President of W.S.O. U.S.A, in a statement, strongly objected to the behavior of the officers of the detention center for refusing to allow Mr. Bajwa to practice Sikh tenets. Mr. Chima said that the right of wearing turban, kara and kanga (comb) as a part of Sikh religious symbols, has been accepted by the American authorities and allowed to practice in other jails of U.S.A.

Mr. Chima stated that the government of India could not prove any charge of terrorism or sedition against Mr. Bajwa for the last three and a half years, then why the American Immigration authorities are keen to throw him (Mr. Bajwa) in the butchers’ hands by deporting him back to India.

Mr. Chima called upon the Federal government to give a guarantee that Mr. Bajwa will not be killed by the Government of India in some fake encounter as is being done every day in Punjab.

He appealed to the government of U.S.A. which he described as a champion of human rights, not to deport Mr. Bajwa to India to save his life from the hands of those who have least care for the human rights.

Mr. Chima also appealed to leaders of the Sikh community to raise their voice against the deportation of Mr. Bajwa and refusal of the detention center to let him practice the Sikh religious tenets.

Article extracted from this publication >> April 29, 1988