article
Most violence against British Sikhs is committed by... other Sikhs - report
By Barfi Culture Team
11th December 2018

On Saturday, a number of police officers were called to a Gurdwara in West London in a dispute over a controversial and much-criticised preacher.

The incident prompted researcher Dr Jasjit Singh to reiterate something he had found in his own research.

"I mapped historical incidents of violence involving Sikhs in Britain for my report (pg 22)," he tweeted.

"I found the most frequent type of violence [after 1984] involving Sikhs is against other Sikhs. Heartbreaking. The system is broken. Things need to change."

Here are the incidents he mapped for the report, which was widely praised by British Sikhs when it was published.

Click the image for the full size



The report examined the context and reality of Sikh activism in the UK. Its main focus was addressing accusations of 'extremism' and 'radicalisation' by the Indian government. It found little evidence for most of these claims.

But it also addressed Sikh on Sikh violence:

"The timeline above highlights how ‘Sikh on Sikh’ issues in Britain have occurred in relation to
a) the 1984 related ‘political’ violence around viewpoints on Khalistan,
b) gurdwara governance issues,
c) disagreements around Sikh practices and doctrine
d) factional disputes between Sikhs following particular groups or individuals (see Appendix D for a geographical mapping of the above incidents)."

"Roughly half of the ‘Sikh on Sikh’ incidents listed have taken place due to gurdwara governance issues with the remaining half being a consequence of doctrinal and / or factional conflicts between groups."

"The number of such incidents appears to have increased in recent years as points of contention are now quickly disseminated online. As the timeline above only contains ‘Sikh on Sikh’ incidents reported in mainstream English language British media, it is important to note that other such incidents will have certainly taken place which have not been reported in mainstream media, or which have only been reported in Sikh and Punjabi media."

When asked what system was "broken", Dr Jasjit Singh elaborated further on Twitter:








Get our weekly email on the desi diaspora
Barfi Culture is a (recently launched!) news magazine, covering South Asians living in Europe and North America.

»   Balanced news, informative opinions
»   Celebrating our cultures
»   A platform for people

We publish daily. Get our email or find us on social media (tw: news; fb: culture; insta: images).

Find out more | Tell us your story
Barfi Culture is a news-magazine on South Asians in Europe and North America.
(This is what makes us different)

Editorial Policy | Contact Us