Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund

Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund SALDEF is a national Sikh American media, policy, and education organization. Founded 1996. www.saldef.org. We envision a United States where all Americans are respected and recognized as a vibrant and integral part of the fabric of this nation.
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SALDEF maintains a full-time staff with offices in Washington, DC, and Los Angeles, CA.

SALDEF maintains a full-time staff with offices in Washington, DC, and Los Angeles, CA.

Operating as usual

🇮🇳India is currently dealing with one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks globally. The spike has overwhelmed the country's ...
04/25/2021

🇮🇳India is currently dealing with one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks globally. The spike has overwhelmed the country's healthcare infrastructure and has led to oxygen shortages. 

In February, #India enacted a new regulation that could allow it to jail employees of social-media companies should they refuse to comply with the government's demands to delete content it considers illegal, as reported by the Fast Company and the Wall Street Journal.

As the lines between political speech, hate speech, and #disinformation become hazy, social media platforms have found themselves in a constant #censorship battle with local authorities.

🇮🇳India is currently dealing with one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks globally. The spike has overwhelmed the country's healthcare infrastructure and has led to oxygen shortages. 

In February, #India enacted a new regulation that could allow it to jail employees of social-media companies should they refuse to comply with the government's demands to delete content it considers illegal, as reported by the Fast Company and the Wall Street Journal.

As the lines between political speech, hate speech, and #disinformation become hazy, social media platforms have found themselves in a constant #censorship battle with local authorities.

“I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The grea...
04/23/2021
Welcome! You are invited to join a webinar: #SALDEFSpeaks on Disinformation Surrounding the Farmers’ Protests. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email about joining the webinar.

“I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.”
- Abraham Lincoln

Even in modern times, this quote still carries significant weight. From the recent Indianapolis shootings affecting Sikh families to the ongoing Farmers Protest in India, our community has had to face traumatic events which can limit our capacity to fully process them.

This challenge is further highlighted by self-serving governments that utilize digital and news media with global reach to mold news narratives to serve their own interests rather than the people.

This web of #disinformation and misinformation can be navigated with scientific qualitative and quantitative data - accurate numbers, objective accounts, precise images, etc. What tools, if any, exist to combat the misinformation problem in developing countries such as India?

We would like to invite you to our very first webinar in our new series, #saldefspeaks. Join our expert panelists as we gain a first-hand experience of social media censorship, explore the facts vs. fake, and learn how to identify and deal with these issues on different platforms.

REGISTER NOW for this FREE WEBINAR: https://bit.ly/3grRBnN

Follow our event page for updates: https://fb.me/e/27DQRt23Y

#Webinar #SALDEFspeaks #IndianFarmers

In this webinar, we aim to demonstrate how to consume media responsibly in the wake of the Indian Farmers Protests. Attendees will be introduced to the impacts of misinformation and disinformation on the Sikh community and learn how to identify and deal with these issues on different platforms.

“Joining the Sat Sangat, I have found peace and tranquillity; I shall not wander away from there again.”- Guru Granth Sa...
04/23/2021

“Joining the Sat Sangat, I have found peace and tranquillity; I shall not wander away from there again.”
- Guru Granth Sahib 818

The sangat gathered at tonight’s vigil held at the Greenwood Amphitheater in Indiana, the community where one of the victims, Jaswinder Singh, lived. The vigil had the Greenwood Mayor, Police Chief, and members of the city’s Common Council speak.

Kiran Gill, SALDEF Executive Director, who is currently with the sangat at the vigil says, “The community came together to grieve and Sikh community leaders echoed calls for accountability and change. There was a large Sikh presence. Public officials recognized the vibrant and strong Sikh community in Indiana.”

04/22/2021

We send much love, prayers and support to the families of Matthew R. Alexander, Amarjit Sekhon, Samaria Blackwell, Jaswinder Singh, John Weisert, Amarjeet Johal, Karli Smith, and Jasvinder Kaur-- all lives stolen in the April 15 Fed Ex shooting. We also send our love to all those physically injured and those who survived. All of our #LoveToIndianapolis #FedEx

Given the acts of racial trauma and anguish for so many, we ask the sangat to join us at the virtual solidarity vigil fo...
04/22/2021

Given the acts of racial trauma and anguish for so many, we ask the sangat to join us at the virtual solidarity vigil for the Sikh community TONIGHT, one week after the mass shooting in Indianapolis. 

Let us gather together as a community to grieve, rage, and practice revolutionary love —hear from Sikh community members, national faith leaders, movement leaders, poets, and artists.  

It will be a night of testimony, music, song, and prayer in the Sikh spirit of Chardi Kala — ever-rising spirits, even in darkness. We hope you can join us in solidarity, please RSVP now!

 #StandWithSikhs #StopAsianHate #EndRacialViolence

Given the acts of racial trauma and anguish for so many, we ask the sangat to join us at the virtual solidarity vigil for the Sikh community TONIGHT, one week after the mass shooting in Indianapolis. 

Let us gather together as a community to grieve, rage, and practice revolutionary love —hear from Sikh community members, national faith leaders, movement leaders, poets, and artists.  

It will be a night of testimony, music, song, and prayer in the Sikh spirit of Chardi Kala — ever-rising spirits, even in darkness. We hope you can join us in solidarity, please RSVP now!

 #StandWithSikhs #StopAsianHate #EndRacialViolence

Did you know? Fake news and false rumors reach more people, penetrate deeper into the social network, and spread much fa...
04/22/2021

Did you know?

Fake news and false rumors reach more people, penetrate deeper into the social network, and spread much faster than accurate stories.

The disinformation surrounding the Indian farmer’s protest has illustrated a new kind of #disinformation warfare.

Please join us for SALDEF's new webinar series, #SALDEFspeaks, where we plan to bridge the gap between the policy work and the community education we do as an organization. For the first webinar in our series, we will be speaking on “Disinformation in the Wake of the Indian Farmers Protest”.

Hear from our panel of activists, experts and award-winning journalists as they discuss disinformation online as well as demonstrate how to consume media responsibly in the wake of the Indian Farmers Protests.

Register Here: https://bit.ly/3grRBnN

#Webinar #FarmersProtest #sikh #fakenews

Did you know?

Fake news and false rumors reach more people, penetrate deeper into the social network, and spread much faster than accurate stories.

The disinformation surrounding the Indian farmer’s protest has illustrated a new kind of #disinformation warfare.

Please join us for SALDEF's new webinar series, #SALDEFspeaks, where we plan to bridge the gap between the policy work and the community education we do as an organization. For the first webinar in our series, we will be speaking on “Disinformation in the Wake of the Indian Farmers Protest”.

Hear from our panel of activists, experts and award-winning journalists as they discuss disinformation online as well as demonstrate how to consume media responsibly in the wake of the Indian Farmers Protests.

Register Here: https://bit.ly/3grRBnN

#Webinar #FarmersProtest #sikh #fakenews

In this time of great strife and division in our society, it is important to look back and get inspiration from Sikh tra...
04/20/2021

In this time of great strife and division in our society, it is important to look back and get inspiration from Sikh traditions. One of the greatest virtues of Sikhism is sewa. 

Sewa is defined as selfless service to all regardless of caste, class, religion, gender, social or economic status or political consideration. 

Join us on Instagram LIVE tomorrow as we chat with Khalsa Aid and learn more about the concept of seva and why it remains relevant today. 

Have a question about seva? Leave it below for it to be featured during the live!

In this time of great strife and division in our society, it is important to look back and get inspiration from Sikh traditions. One of the greatest virtues of Sikhism is sewa. 

Sewa is defined as selfless service to all regardless of caste, class, religion, gender, social or economic status or political consideration. 

Join us on Instagram LIVE tomorrow as we chat with Khalsa Aid and learn more about the concept of seva and why it remains relevant today. 

Have a question about seva? Leave it below for it to be featured during the live!

These are the faces of some of the victims in the recent Indianapolis mass shooting. As Komal Chauhan, the grand-daughte...
04/20/2021

These are the faces of some of the victims in the recent Indianapolis mass shooting. As Komal Chauhan, the grand-daughter of one of the victims, stated, “Amarjeet Johal, my Naniji comes from a long line of strong women. After the passing of her mother, she never let her sisters feel that void. This could be anybody’s Naniji [grand-mother]” Swipe through to read our official statement.

This weekend, we joined our families and sangats across the nation to sit with the Guru and honor the lives of:Matthew R...
04/19/2021
SALDEF Grieves with the Sangat in Indianapolis - SALDEF

This weekend, we joined our families and sangats across the nation to sit with the Guru and honor the lives of:

Matthew R. Alexander, 32
Samaria Blackwell, 19
Amarjeet Johal, 66
Jasvinder Kaur, 50
Jaswinder Singh, 68
Amarjit Sekhon, 48
Karli Smith, 19
John Weisert, 74

We grieve with the sangat in Indianapolis, the other employees of FedEx, and those affected by Thursday night’s shooting. Our prayers are with the families impacted by yet another senseless act of violence. We also recognize that impacts of such violence and trauma extend well beyond the families and immediate community members affected.

Read our full statement regarding the incident here:
https://saldef.org/saldef-grieves-with-the-sangat-in-indianapolis/

Washington D.C. – (April 19, 2021) This weekend, we joined with our families and sangats across the nation to sit with the Guru and honor the lives of: Matthew R. Alexander, 32 Samaria Blackwell, 19 Amarjeet Johal, 66 Jasvinder Kaur, 50 Jaswinder Singh, 68 Amarjit Sekhon, 48 Karli Smith, 19 John W...

Simranjit Singh is a 28-year-old farmer in a town 15 miles west of Fresno, Calif., called Kerman. "[When] I see the farm...
04/17/2021
For Calif. Sikh Farmers, India Protests Cast 'Dark Cloud' Over Vaisakhi Festival

Simranjit Singh is a 28-year-old farmer in a town 15 miles west of Fresno, Calif., called Kerman. "[When] I see the farmers and the protesting [in India], I see myself. I see my mom. I see my dad. I see my sister," Singh says. "If my dad or mom didn't come to America, we would be there on the streets of Delhi."

Central California is home to a large population of Sikh Punjabi farmers who say this year's harvest festival, Vaisakhi, holds complicated feelings amid months-long farmer protests in India.

#BreakingNewsLast night, eight people were killed and seven wounded in a shooting at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis. E...
04/16/2021
Indianapolis mass shooting: Eight dead at FedEx facility

#BreakingNews

Last night, eight people were killed and seven wounded in a shooting at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis. Emerging news reports indicate that victims are mostly Punjabi Sikhs but they have yet not determined a clear motive.

We are grieving the victims and those in the Indianapolis community affected by last night's horrific shooting - including our own Sikh sangat (community members). Our prayers are with the families impacted by yet another senseless act of violence.

Read the full story here: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-56770200

The gunman began firing as soon as he drove up to FedEx site before killing himself, police say.

Over the weekend, Daunte Wright, a 20-year old Black man, was killed by a police member in Brooklyn Center, MN. We stand...
04/15/2021

Over the weekend, Daunte Wright, a 20-year old Black man, was killed by a police member in Brooklyn Center, MN.

We stand in solidarity and grieve with the Daunte Wright family. For too long, Black Americans have been victims of disproportionate use of force, trauma and violence. As Sikh Americans, we stand up for justice and humane treatment of all people.

Read the full story here: https://bit.ly/2OPDduc

Below are some resources and information on how you can support Daunte Wright's family and the organizing on the ground.

Over the weekend, Daunte Wright, a 20-year old Black man, was killed by a police member in Brooklyn Center, MN.

We stand in solidarity and grieve with the Daunte Wright family. For too long, Black Americans have been victims of disproportionate use of force, trauma and violence. As Sikh Americans, we stand up for justice and humane treatment of all people.

Read the full story here: https://bit.ly/2OPDduc

Below are some resources and information on how you can support Daunte Wright's family and the organizing on the ground.

As we celebrate Vaisakhi, it is our sincere and humble wish that Sikh Americans feel a renewed sense of faith, commitmen...
04/14/2021

As we celebrate Vaisakhi, it is our sincere and humble wish that Sikh Americans feel a renewed sense of faith, commitment, and optimism during this festive and inspirational time. We hope Sikhs living in the United States remain focused on the values and virtues that make our religion and community unique and unparalleled. #vaisakhi #sikh #baisakhi

As we celebrate Vaisakhi, it is our sincere and humble wish that Sikh Americans feel a renewed sense of faith, commitment, and optimism during this festive and inspirational time. We hope Sikhs living in the United States remain focused on the values and virtues that make our religion and community unique and unparalleled. #vaisakhi #sikh #baisakhi

Keeping in view the upsurge of Covid-19’s second wave, the Pakistan government has set a strict Standard Operating Proce...
04/13/2021
Vaisakhi Celebrations: Pakistan opens door for Indian Sikhs but closes for its own citizens

Keeping in view the upsurge of Covid-19’s second wave, the Pakistan government has set a strict Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the Indian Sikh devotees. On the other hand, the Pakistan government has banned all the Pakistani Sikhs as well as its others from attending Vaisakhi celebrations inside Gurdwara Sri Panja Sahib.

Rejecting 356 out of the total 793 applications endorsed by the apex Sikh body SGPC, Pakistan's Islamic government has granted visas to 437 Sikh devotees for celebrating Vaisakhi in Pakistan. However, it is still unsure whether the Indian government would allow these devotees to cross the Indo-Pak b

102 years ago, 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐉𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐢𝐚𝐧𝐰𝐚𝐥𝐚 𝐁𝐚𝐠𝐡 𝐦𝐚𝐬𝐬𝐚𝐜𝐫𝐞 marked a turning point in India’s struggle for Independence.⁣⁣It is importa...
04/13/2021

102 years ago, 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐉𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐢𝐚𝐧𝐰𝐚𝐥𝐚 𝐁𝐚𝐠𝐡 𝐦𝐚𝐬𝐬𝐚𝐜𝐫𝐞 marked a turning point in India’s struggle for Independence.⁣

It is important to note that this event was not an isolated incident, rather an incident that occurred due to a multitude of factors preceding it. A few days earlier, in reaction to a recent escalation in protests, Amritsar was placed under martial law by British Brigadier General Reginald Dyer, who banned all meetings and gatherings in the city.⁣

On April 13, the day of the Sikh Baisakhi festival, tens of thousands of people came to Amritsar, the holiest city of the Sikhs. Thousands of these people, many unaware of Dyer’s recent ban on public assemblies, convened at Jallianwala Bagh. Dyer’s troops surrounded the park and without warning opened fire on the crowd, killing several hundred and wounding more than a thousand.⁣

Slide through this carousel to look at the timeline of events that ultimately led to the Jallianwala Bagh massacre on April 13, 1919.

In 2012, SALDEF commissioned a report called Turban Myths in collaboration with Stanford’s Peace Innovation Labs. Some o...
04/12/2021
Who are Sikhs?

In 2012, SALDEF commissioned a report called Turban Myths in collaboration with Stanford’s Peace Innovation Labs.

Some of the Top Level Findings include that 70% of respondents could not identify a Sikh man in a picture as a Sikh.

In this video, we collaborated with Faith Counts to showcase Satnam Singh's perspective on Sikhism and what the religion has taught him.

#Sikh #SikhHeritageMonth

https://youtu.be/4yBvSwYUcIs

In 2012, SALDEF commissioned a report called Turban Myths in collaboration with Stanford’s Peace Innovation Labs. Some of the Top Level Findings include that...

04/08/2021
Webinar

Happening now! Join us to learn all about COVID-19 Vaccines.

With help from partners Listos California, the United Way of Fresno and Madera, the Fresno County Department of Public H...
04/08/2021
Punjabi food and agricultural workers get COVID-19 vaccinations at drive-up event

With help from partners Listos California, the United Way of Fresno and Madera, the Fresno County Department of Public Health and the Jakara Movement, doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were given to families and individuals via easy access through the parking lots behind the temple.

More than 1,000 were expected to get the Johnson & Johnson shot.

“The turban is an inextricable part of the Sikh identity. Sikhs say you may take off their head but not the turban.” - P...
04/06/2021

“The turban is an inextricable part of the Sikh identity. Sikhs say you may take off their head but not the turban.” - Preneet Kaur⁣

Join us tomorrow, Wednesday April 7th, on Instagram LIVE as we teach Faith Counts how to tie a turban 👳‍♂️ ⁣

Special thanks to @zhkdesigns for this wonderful artwork! ⁣

Happy 110th birthday to a living legend, Fauja Singh! As the world's oldest marathoner, Fauja Singh has achieved countle...
04/01/2021

Happy 110th birthday to a living legend, Fauja Singh! As the world's oldest marathoner, Fauja Singh has achieved countless milestones, from appearing in Adidas ad campaigns to beating world records at the age of 93. ⁣

Fauja Singh’s accomplishments, bravery and dedication to his sport continue to inspire Sikhs all over the world. ⁣

In an interview with SBS Punjabi he stated, “When I first ran the marathon, they asked me to take off my turban and wear a patka. But I refused, and insisted on wearing my turban. Nowadays, whether there is a marathon in England, or in Canada or in India or elsewhere, every Sikh wears a turban and I'm very proud of that.”

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