Op/Ed: Should the UK Government Erect a Statue of a Blatant Racist and Pedophile in Parliament Square?

Gandhi at 10 Downing Street

Sikhs accuse the Foreign Secretary of appeasing the Indian Government by announcing a statue in Parliament Square of [Mohandas] Gandhi who is a blatant racist and pedophile. Instead there should be a permanent monument recognising the huge contribution of Sikhs in the First World War.

The Sikh Federation (UK) is dismayed William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, has today announced in India that a statue of [Mohandas] Gandhi is being constructed and will be erected in Parliament Square next year.

We have today written to the Culture Secretary, Sajid Javid (a copy of the letter is below) pointing out this was something we successfully opposed in 2008. 

We have now pointed out other evidence from very reliable sources why it would be totally inappropriate to have a statue erected in Parliament Square of someone who is a blatant racist, a sexual weirdo or worse a child abuser and someone discriminating on the basis of the Hindu caste system, which is now outlawed in the UK. 

Instead we think it would be far better given the First World War Centenary Commemorations if the UK Government officially recognised the huge sacrifice of Sikh soldiers in the First World War by having a much needed permanent monument in central London depicting the contribution of Sikhs who were referred to as the ‘Lions of the Great War’. 

The announcement today suggests either the UK Government has been totally hoodwinked or more likely they are turning a blind eye to appease the Indian Government in turn for business.  However, we hope they will reconsider when they look at the evidence presented and recognise the abhorrence of ordinary members of the British public who oppose racism, pedophilia, and caste discrimination.

Extract from letter sent today by Bhai Amrik Singh, Chair of the Sikh Federation (UK), to the Culture Secretary, Sajid Javid:

Last week representatives of the Sikh Federation (UK) met with Warwick Hawkins MBE, the Stakeholder Manager at your Department responsible for the First World War Centenary Commemorations.  

The objective of the meeting was to learn about what government is planning over the next four years and also share our initial thoughts on how the British Sikh community will contribute to highlight the huge sacrifices by Sikh soldiers.  Following the meeting we wrote to Warwick to share some of our plans. 

We wish to meet you as soon as possible to discuss one of our proposals.  We are keen on a permanent monument in central London to highlight Sikh sacrifices with the objective of showing Sikhs were the ‘Lions of the Great War’. 

We wish the monument to be unveiled towards the end of the 2014-2018 period and have consulted with a number of other Sikh organisations.  We are firmly of the view that a project of this scale should be led by your Department and will require a Sikh Memorial Trust, a suitable patron such as Prince Charles and funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund. We hope you can meet us before the 100th anniversary of the declaration of World War One on the 4 August.

We have today read press reports following an announcement by the Foreign Secretary during a visit in India that you are leading an advisory group to support a project that will see a statue of Gandhi erected next year in Parliament Square.  This is something we opposed and prevented in 2008. At that time we met with the Mayor for London and provided the Mayor with information for him to consider why it was not appropriate to support a statue of Gandhi in Parliament Square.  We referred him to http://www.gandhism.net/

Since then there have been a number of books published with shocking revelations about Gandhi e.g. Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle with India by Joseph Lelyveld a former editor of the New York Times, and a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author and Gandhi: Naked Ambition by Jad Adams a historian and independent television producer.  Newspapers like the Daily Telegraph, Wall Street Journal, Daily Mail and Huffington Post have reviewed these books and carried news items following the publications of these books. 

There is therefore plenty of evidence to demonstrate Gandhi was:

  1. a blatant racist given his attitudes towards black South Africans describing them as Kaffirs [an offensive term equivalent to the n-word]
  2. a Pedophile given his sexual exploitations with young girls, holding ‘nightly cuddles’ with naked girls in his entourage, including his own niece
  3. an unabashedly diehard supporter of India’s Hindu caste system – he would never mix with a lowly group or caste (we should not need to remain you that caste discrimination is now outlawed in the UK)

We do not think a statue should be erected in Parliament Square of a blatant racist, at best a sexual weirdo (words used by the Wall Street Journal) or worse a child abuser (given the current concerns about people in positions of power abusing children) and someone discriminating on the basis of the Hindu caste system.


  1. i fully accept indian govt mass murders. but his article is so twisted and dark. it shows those perpetrating such inciteful comments are themselves are conducting themselves in the same barbarous ways the indian govt did in 84. another articles on here supports the palestinians without deep knowledge of the problem and the fact that hamas and iran want to wipe israel out. i by no means support israel aggression but see it in the context of the region and the issues at play. on one hand sikhs eulogise jews and seek comparisons with them. on the other want to stand against israel without taking into account a balanced perspective.
    the world is indeed getting a darker place with extremist ignorant views taking stage but the people are more informed and cleverer than to give such comments credibility.
    i expect a deluge of anti comments of anti hindu, anti brahmin, anti indian abroad, supporter of indira gandhi, cia agent, so on.

  2. Yes, Gandhi got all of the credit even though many Hindus, Sikhs, and Moslems) sacrificed lot more than him. He sure is not my role model. Father of our nation is Guru Gobind Singh Sahib. I do feel though that we as Sikhs tend to be too self righteous sometimes when it comes to others but we forget or ignore or overlook highlighting our own missgivings or wrongdoings. Many of our very own leaders betray us and have lost moral grounds to remain in power, and yet we do nothing. Bearded, turbaned Sikhs smoking smack, being implicated in drug smugglling, encouraging alcohol consumption and many other activities which may be legal but are morally wrong in any civilized society. Even girls in Punjab are getting into drugs, drinking and whatever else that happens. Let us focus on ourselves please!

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