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Chivukula Condemns Killing at Wisconsin Sikh Temple

The NJ Assemblyman — who is running for the NJ 7th Congressional District seat — says he will closely monitor the investigation.

NJ Assembly Deputy Speaker Upendra J. Chivukula has condemned the actions of the gunman this Sunday in Wisconsin. The assailant himself, Wade Michael Page, was shot and killed by police.

Chivukula issued the following statement:  

"I am shocked and saddened by Sunday's senseless violence.

"The killing of innocent people at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin is a dastardly act, made even more despicable by the fact that it was at a place of worship, where men, women and children congregate to offer prayers.

"I plan to closely monitor the investigation of the killing, including allegations that racial bias may have been the motivation for the attack on a Sikh temple.

"This terrible act of violence by a former member of the armed forces is even more reprehensible, considering that our brave men and women in uniform make the ultimate sacrifice of their lives to protect our nation and our lives.

"Our hearts go out to the victims, their families and friends and the entire Oak Creek Sikh community. We are keeping them in our thoughts and prayers as we also pray for an end to such brutal acts of killing."

In wake of deadly Wisconsin shooting, Sikh leaders in New Jersey are and are calling for more education.

Chivukula is part of a new "Leadership Network" for Asian American candidates. Chivukula was born in 1950 in Nellore, India, and emigrated to the United States in 1974. A spokesperson reports that Chivukula is Hindu, and "is respectful of all faiths, including Sikhs, Muslims, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, Jains."

Chivukula, who lives in Franklin Township, Somerset County, is challenging incumbent , a Republican, for the 7th Congressional district seat.

The 7th district has recently been redistricting and now covers large portions of Union, Morris, Hunterdon and Somerset counties, parts of Warren County, and Millburn in Essex County.

In Union County, the 7th Congressional district includes Berkeley Heights, Clark, Cranford, Garwood, Kenilworth, Mountainside, New Providence, a portion of Scotch Plains, Springfield, Summit, a portion of Union, Westfield and Winfield.

TomK August 07, 2012 at 09:53 PM
I am so happy that Speaker Chivukula enlightened us about this, since I otherwise would have no idea that it was a "dastardly act." Is the thinking here really that it takes someone of Indian ancestry to relate how bad this is? Thanks anyway, but I think we already realize that, no matter the race/ethnicity of the victims. I am somewhat at a loss concerning his comments about the potential racial bias aspect. If that was one of the motivations of this lunatic, does that somehow make it worse than it already is? Is he saying it would have been better if he had gone to a Christian church and shot whites of European descent? And the speaker refers to the shooter as simply a "former member" of the armed services. In fact he was demoted for drinking and going AWOL and, it appears, kicked out - as in dishonorably discharged. So if you're going to mention the "service" aspect, that should also be mentioned. He does not get the same credit for his dishonorable (or anything "less than honorable") service as those receive who have served honorably - his service should not be compared to theirs. I can't really see how it is relevant in any case, since his peacetime service ended in 1998, when he was 26 (he is now 40).
newbie1 November 11, 2012 at 11:19 PM
i think he mentions the racial bias aspect because there were reports that the guy thought the sikhs were muslims. after 9/11 evidentally ppl confused indian hindus and sikhs with muslims and went after them because they had brown skin. his reference had no implication abt whites as ur extracting. your right its not any better if he had shot up a Mosk, but mostly they are trying to make a distinction between the basic tenants of nonviolent eastern religions (sikh, hindu, jain, buddhism-->most practice nonviolence to the point of vegetarianism) and the reality that islam is associated with violence in america. evidentally some people including the shooter can't tell apart indians from middle easterners. the statement is made because they dont appreciate getting caught in the cross-fire between the west and and the terrorists~and honestly rightfully so because the same terrorists that attacked the US, they are involved with terror attacks in israel, india (US media just doesn't report ones against india as much). and the article is put out because people from the sikh community expect in addition to the president and the officials in wisconsin, that the handful of political leaders that represent areas with large sikh populations to speak up. the nj senators also made statements and they aren't indian, i dont think he put out a statement just because he was indian. its also cuz sikh community is small and apparently a lot of ppl in nj had relatives/friends in dat temple.

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