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UK: Khalistani outfits tell Sikhs to identify themselves as ‘Asians’, ‘Punjabis’ instead of ‘Indians’ in 2021 Census

The Sikh Federation had earlier lost a legal battle while trying to compel the UK government to identify 'Sikh' as an ethnicity in the Census.

In a new development, Khalistani organisations in the United Kingdom have asked the Sikhs in the country to not identify themselves as ‘Indians’ in the upcoming Census, reported The Times of India.

The Network of Sikh Organisations (NSO), which runs more than 130 Gurdwaras and organisations in the UK, has tweeted on Thursday (February 18), “On 21 March 2021 the Census will occur. We have made some recommendations for the British Sikh community on some of the Census questions – in relation to religion, ethnicity & language. It is of course up to the individual to fill in as they best see fit.”

Screengrab of the tweet by NSO

NSO had shared four infographics, asking Sikh residents to choose ‘Sikh’ as their religion, primary language as ‘Punjabi’ and ethnicity as ‘Punjabi’ under the Asian section. “Our final recommendation is the question of ethnicity. This asks participants to answer, ‘What is your ethnic group’? In this section (15C), We recommend individuals unhappy with the ‘Indian’ option should tick Any other Asian background’ (under ‘Asian or Asian British’) and write in ‘Punjabi’, NSO tweeted.

Screengrab of the infograohic by NSO

Sikh Federation asks to use ‘Sikh’ as ethnicity instead of ‘Indian’ or ‘Punjabi’

While speaking to the Times of India, NSO Director Lord Singh of Wimbledon said, “On ethnicity, our advice to those unwilling to describe themselves as ‘Indian, because of the absence of closure for the 1984 anti-Sikh genocide is to write ‘Punjabi — a more accurate description of ethnicity.” While NSO recommended the use of the ‘Asian’ group, another Khalistani outfit named the Sikh Federation suggested to pick the ‘other ethnic group’ category and write ‘Sikh’ as the ethnicity.

UK Census may collect factually incorrect data

The Sikh Federation had earlier lost a legal battle while trying to compel the UK government to identify ‘Sikh’ as an ethnicity in the Census. Its spokesperson said that 83,000 Sikhs refused to use exisiting ‘ethnic’ categories during the 2011 UK Census and choose the ‘other’ option. “Now we plan to double that number and possibly get up to 200,000 Sikhs to tick ‘other’ and write ‘Sikh’ this time to send a strong signal to the UK government,” remarked the spokesperson of the Sikh Federation.

The intervention of the Khalistani outfits has sparked fears of the census capturing wrong data about the Indian community and its population. While some Sikhs may write ‘Punjabi’ as their ‘ethnicity’, others might go with ‘Sikh’ or ‘Indian.’ It must be mentioned that around 2.5% (14.13 lac) of the British population identified as ‘Indian’ in the 2011 Census. However, only 1.5% (8.35 lac) identified as ‘others’ in the Asian category and 0.06% (3.33 lac) in the ‘any other ethnic group’ section.

British Indians Voice remains hopeful about British Indians choosing the ‘Indian’ ethnicity box in Census

While speaking about the development, the spokesperson of the British Indians Voice said, “I am confident everyone who is ethnically Indian will tick the ‘Indian’ box…For the ethnicity question we want people to tick Asian, then Indian. This applies to Sikhs, Muslims, Hindus, Jains, Buddhist Christians and others with roots in India.”

The spokesperson added that incorrect information will affect funds collected for relevant necessities such as temples, chaplains, crematorium etc. He reiterated that British Indians should be known by their own identity and not ‘Asian’, ‘British Asian’, or ‘South Asian’.

Farmers protest in India hijacked by Khalistanis

OpIndia has reported how Khalistani elements had infiltrated the Punjab farmer protest, which subsequently turned violent with the rioters unfurling multiple flags with Sikh religious symbol on the Red Fort on Republic Day.

A week later, after popstar Rihanna and porn star Mia Khalifa along with international protestor Greta Thunberg voiced their support to protesting farmers, a bigger conspiracy to defame India on global platform backed by pro-Khalistan outfit Poetic Justice Foundation was revealed. Khalistanis in California, USA, have also indulged in supporting and celebrating the violent farmer protests and had even broken Mahatma Gandhi statue.

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OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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