Harnek Singh, the New Zealand-based Indian-origin radio host, who was attacked by unknown assailants on December 23 night near his residence in Wattle Downs and had sustained critical injuries in the attack, is on his path to recovery. The attack against Harnek Singh came after he had supported the farm laws passed by the Modi government and criticised the so-called farmers protesting against it.
The 53-year-old Radio host recently spoke to NZ Herald narrating the ordeal he had to go through after the fateful night of December 23.
“The doctors told me that I’m on the mend so they can send me home. But when we talked to police they cautioned us by saying ‘be careful’. I asked them to define that. What should we do?” Singh told in his interview.
“Recovery wise it’s OK, I’m very happy. But psychologically, whenever you remember [the attack] …My family and relatives are very scared. My wife, she’s got courage. Living with me the last 20 years, she understands me, she knows what my commitments are. But I can see internally. Last night, nearly 1.5 hours she was telling me the story, revising the story of his attack,” Singh said.
Singh was found by a Radio Virsa colleague, slumped in his car’s seat on Glenross Drive, surrounded by a pool of blood and shards of glass. The severity of the attack can be gauged by the fact that dozens of injury scars and staple holes extend up to his arms, across his shoulders, neck and up to the top of his head.
Singh has suffered serious injuries from the attack. Besides, the threat of the assailants still looms over his head. When Singh was admitted to Middlemore Hospital for treatment, a guard stood sentry to his room in case assaulters once again try to attack him. Singh had endured grievous injuries on his torso and head. His head alone was put back together with 150 stitches. His right ear was almost hacked off.
Singh wears a cast on his hand and he will have to wait until it fully comes off to determine if he has any possible nerve damage in his hand. But Singh claims that he has passed all the memory tests given at the hospital and his mind is responding well.
Harnek Singh’s friends claim assault was religiously motivated
The friends of Harnek Singh claimed that the attack was religiously motivated. It is the second public attack Singh has suffered this year after he was assaulted in Love Punjab Restaurant on his birthday in July.
Singh’s colleagues at Radio Virsa, where he hosts a program dedicated to the Sikh community, said he was attacked as he was returning home this week from that day’s broadcast.
Balwinder Singh, who is a co-worker of Harnek Singh at Radio Virsa said that Harnek Singh’s show would obviously upset someone who is religiously fanatic, and someone who looks at the religion in a mythical point of view as a lot of religions do.
Harnek Singh had spoken against the farmers protesting against the new Farm Laws
Reportedly, Harnek Singh had recently spoken against the farmers protesting against the three laws passed by the Indian government. Singh was constantly speaking on his radio and YouTube channel against the farmers’ protest, which may also have triggered an attack against him. He had recently appealed to the protesting farmers to withdraw the politically-motivated protests in Delhi.
In the last few years, the authorities in NZ had heard eight complaints against Singh for comments he had made in Punjabi language to a caller about the Sikh sect Damdami Taksaal in response to recent violent incidents in India.