The report states that Pakistani Muslim men in gangs have been grooming and abusing young Sikh girls for decades but ‘politically correct’ police 'recklessly ignored' the grooming gangs
The UK born Sikh girls have been targeted and sexually exploited by Pakistani-origin Muslim grooming gangs for several decades, but the authorities over years ‘recklessly ignored’ it due to ‘political correctness’, says a recently released report.
The ‘Religiously Aggravated Sexual Exploitation of Young Sikh Women Across the UK’ report, has been prepared by the Sikh Mediation and Rehabilitation Team (SMART) and Sikh Youth UK. It found that the police ‘recklessly ignored’ complaints for reasons of ‘political correctness’.
“Since the early 1980s, evidence collated by British Sikh organisations has recorded cases of sexual abuse and exploitation against young Sikh females by grooming gangs populated by perpetrators of primarily Pakistani or Muslim heritage,” the report noted.
“Although not exclusively, offences are documented as regularly being committed within the structure of networks, including the nuclear and extended family members of offenders. This has, in turn, prompted questions surrounding whether young Sikh females are victims of opportunists or being targeted due to their religious heritage,” it said.
According to the report, the gangs of Pakistani men have been grooming British Sikh girls for decades. It called for an investigation into the pattern of sexual abuse cases which have been registered over decades. The girls would be snared by ‘fashionably dressed adult Pakistani men travelling in flamboyant vehicles to predominantly Sikh dominated areas and schools’, it claimed.
The report said that while the revelation of grooming gangs targeting white girls in Rochdale shocked the nation in 2012, similar instances had long been taking place under the radar in Britain’s Sikh communities.
In the infamous Rochdale child sex abuse case, around fifty underaged girls, mainly native British, in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, England, were identified as victims of sexual abuses. In connection with the incident, nine Pakistani origin men were convicted of sex trafficking, and other offences including rape, trafficking girls for sex and conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with a child, on 8 May 2012 and ten more were convicted in another investigation in 2015.
Giving substance to the allegations in the latest report by SMART, Greater Manchester Police apologised in March 2015 for its failure to investigate the Rochdale child sex abuse cases thoroughly. Sara Rowbotham, the sexual health worker who first recognised patterns of child abuse in the community and fought tirelessly to bring these crimes to police attention was made redundant in 2017.
Sikh community leaders clarified that the report was not a ‘witch-hunt against any individual, community, culture or faith’ – but said nothing would change unless the facts were known. The study also received the backing of British Parliamentarians.
Reacting to the report, Labour MP Sarah Champion said: “I was shocked when I first heard about the organised abuse of Sikh girls by mostly Pakistani men. When I started speaking to Sikh women, I could not believe how widespread the grooming and abuse was – and that this has been going on for decades. We need to speak of the abuse of Sikh girls to take it out of the shadows and make sure the authorities take it seriously.”
Demanding an investigation into the incidents, the Rotherham MP added, “There needs to be a full investigation into the systematic abuse of Sikh girls.”