A 32-year-old Sikh man has allegedly been stabbed by an unidentified person in Modesto, California. As per the CCTV camera footage, it is held that Jagjeet Singh was murdered over a fight for refusing to sell cigarettes to a customer in the store where he worked as a clerk.
Singh worked as a clerk at the Hatch Food and Gas convenience store. As per norms of California, he asked for identity proof from the unidentified buyer of cigarettes but the customer refused to furnish the same. The customer left the store hurriedly uttering racist abuses and warning Singh of dire consequences. The entire episode is captured by the CCTV cameras of the grocery store.
After about 30 minutes, when Singh was about to close the store, the buyer returned, enraged, and stabbed him. Singh was promptly rushed to the hospital where he succumbed to death after fighting for his life for 9 hours. The case is suspected to be a hate crime.
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) May 7, 2017
Following the murder, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has spoken to Navtej S Sarna, Indian Ambassador in the United States. Swaraj has said that the government is committed to protecting all the Indian citizens abroad and has assured them of their safety.
Modesto police hasn’t yet made any official statement about the murderer or his motive.
Jagjeet Singh had been living in the United States for the past 18 months with his sister and brother-in-law. It was only a month ago that Singh got a job in California in the hope of supporting his family back in India.
In the one week, this is the third incident of people of Indian origin being murdered in the United States. Last Wednesday, a technology executive and his wife, both of Indian origin, were shot in San Jose by a boy. On the following day, Ramesh Kumar, a 23-year-old doctor, was found shot dead in his car in Michigan.