London: 7 Afghan Sikhs die from coronavirus

Southall – Photograb from Afghan Sikh documentary ‘Hindu Kush to Thames’
By Asia Samachar Team | U.K.|

Reeling from the devastating attack on a gurdwara in Kabul, Sikhs from Afghanistan in London were greeted with yet more sad news.

At least seven among members of the Afghan Sikh community in London were believed to have perished in the last fortnight due to Covid-19, according to people spoke to Asia Samachar.

The Afghan Sikh community in London is now nursing the latest blow just as they were absorbing the pain of the killing of 25 people at Gurdwara Guru Har Rai in Shor Bazaar in Kabul on 25 March.

“A number of our elders have passed away in the recent days. Some of them had some prior health issues,” said Popander Singh Ahuja, trustee of Gurdwara Guru Nanak Darbar in King’s Street, Southall.

He confirmed some of the cases were related to the novel coronavirus that has taken the world by storm.

The community had conducted a joint Sukhmani Sahib prayers today (2 April) for the departed, said Gajender Singh Khalsa who is attached to the Nisham Sewa Society UK.

“We are sitting at home. Our information is via our Whatsapp group,” he said.

Figures published on Wednesday showed the number of people with coronavirus who have died in Britain rose by 563 to a total 2,352.

More than a half of Britons think Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government was too slow to order a lockdown to slow the spread of coronavirus, according an opinion poll published on Thursday, reports The Guardian.

The Ipsos MORI poll, carried out online between March 27 and March 30 showed 56% of respondents believed the government’s enforcement of social distancing measures was taken too late, compared with 4% who felt that they were taken too soon,  Reuters reports.

Johnson ordered bars, restaurants, gyms and other businesses to close on March 20, after similar measures were taken by other European governments, plunging their economies into a likely deep recession.

Popander said Gurdwara Guru Nanak Darbar had decided to cancel all programmes two days before the government’s directive.



I feel sad and helpless for Sikhs still living in Afghanistan (Asia Samachar, 25 March 2020)


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