Malaysian Commentator Apologizes for Remarks About Sikh Police Officer’s Turban

Malaysian blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin had said that the Sikh police officer's "turban must be too tight that it is restricting the flow of blood to his brain."


Malaysian commentator Raja Petra Kamarudin, who was criticized for his comments about a Sikh police officer’s turban has apologized to the officer and other members of the community. Kamarudin had targeted Sikh officer Amar Singh, saying that his turban was “too tight to allow blood flow in brain,” while blaming the police for stealing Malaysian Ringgit 43.3 million following raids at properties of former Prime Minister Najib Razak in May this year.

Apologizing for his remark against the Sikh turban, Kamarudin (RPK) said in his blog: “I was told a Sikh’s turban is a very sacred item and they do not take too kindly to anyone making fun of it. For that, I would like to sincerely apologize.”

He added: “I also apologize to Amar Singh Ishar Singh because, as much as I may disagree with him, that disagreement should not be reduced to the level of insulting his religion.”

The issue erupted when RPK alleged that police stole money following the raids on Razak’s properties. Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Amar Singh refuted the claims of Kamarudin (RPK), who lives outside the country, the Star reported.

Singh had called the allegations frivolous and baseless. “If he has some information (about the missing money) then he should lodge a report in Malaysia. Don’t hide behind the cyber curtain,” he had said, the Times of India reported.

According to Asia Samachar, RPK then wrote in his blog: “Amar Singh Ishar Singh’s turban must be too tight that it is restricting the flow of blood to his brain…. This Amar Singh needs to remove his turban to clear his brain once in a while…So, show the evidence that you confiscated just RM116.7 and not RM160 million or else remove your turban and stuff it into your mouth.”

RPK’s remarks were condemned by members of the Sikh community, including Amar Singh, who wrote on his Facebook wall: “Even more surprising is when RPK snaps back with a demeaning and derogatory statement to ridicule a person due to race…….whatever respect left is lost……..because “Racist and discriminatory remarks are the weapons used by the weak……..the maximum of hatred for the minimum of reason” The Sikhs hold the turban to very high regard don’t ridicule and try to undermine us……..we have a much stronger grit and courage in us. [Sic]”

Khalsa Diwan Malaysia president Santokh Singh Randhawa lodged a police complaint on Oct.1 against RPK and demanded his apology to the community at large, the Star reported.

“The turban is a sacred article of our faith and not just a symbol. We strongly condemn his ridicule of the turban,” Randhawa had said.

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