Restaurant owner in Tasmania faces racist abuse: ‘Go home, Indian’
Jarnail Singh, who has been living in Australia for 10 years, said he thought it would help others if he spoke about his experiences.
Jarnail Singh (Picture: Dawat The Invitation website)
JARNAIL “Jimmy” Singh, owner of a restaurant in Tasmania, Australia, has experienced an allegedly racist attack that left him shaken.
According to a report by Australia’s ABC, Singh, who owns Dawat – The Invitation, said he had never gone through such an ordeal and it has happened over the last few months.
Singh, who has lived in Tasmania for a decade now, said the racist incidents involved smearing his car with dog excreta and putting up racist graffiti on his driveway that read “Go home, Indian”.
Singh approached the police but not much progress could be done to track those behind the act due to lack of video evidence. But while video cameras installed at his property by his landlord seemed to ease things, letters filled with racist remarks reached his house.
He first thought that the letter had been written by a young person and tried to ignore it. But a second letter came almost a month later and it contained even more offensive content, including remarks such as “you can **** off back to India” and including threats of damage to his vehicle, at either Singh’s work place or his home.
His car was intentionally scratched, outside his place of work.
“It’s mentally very stressful when it comes to your house, and particularly [being targeted] with your name on it,” Singh told ABC.
Singh, who cooked free meals each Thursday at the time of the Covid-19 pandemic-induced lockdown and helped the needy, said he thought it would help others if he spoke about his experiences.
He thanked his customers and supporters, who checked on him after he received the threats, on his restaurant’s social media page.
Tasmania Police commander Jason Elmer said in a statement that the incidents were being investigated, the ABC report added.
According to him, the current law allows courts to “consider that a motivation of racial hatred or prejudice can be an aggravating factor in sentencing”.