Share & Connect
Five Sikh men and one woman were killed on Sunday, August 5, in a shooting at a Sikh Temple in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Victims are Sita Singh, 41; Ranjit Singh, 49; Satwant Singh Kaleka, 65; Prakash Singh, 39; Paramjit Kaur, 41; and Suveg Singh, 84. Three other people were wounded, and two are still in intensive care, fighting for their lives.
The killer went into the Sikh temple at 10:30 AM when mass was about to start. He opened fire against the patrons and killed four people inside the temple. Then he went outside and killed two more in the parking lot next to the religious house.
The gunman, Wade Michael Page, was shot dead by police in the parking lot. Authorities say that Page shot at the police officer who arrived at the scene first while the officer was tending to one of the victims. Later Page fired at two police cars. The police did not believe they had other options than to shoot him.
According to authorities, the killer was a United States Army veteran who served from 1992 until 1998. The Southern Poverty Law center, a group that studies hate crimes said that they have been following Page’s steps during the past ten years. They say that Page was involved in neo-nazi movements and that he was the frontman of a racist, ‘white power’ band called End Apathy.
Mark Potok, the spokesman and director of publications and information for the Southern Poverty Law Center described Michael Page: “This guy was in the thick of the white supremacist music scene and, in fact, played with some of the best known racist bands in the country.”
“The music that comes from these bands is incredibly violent and it talks about murdering Jews, black people, gay people and a whole host of other enemies. It is music that could not be sold over the counter around the country,” Potok said.
Police is now trying to find out why Page attacked the Sikh temple. Sikhism is a monotheistic religion that has its biggest congregation in India, along with 27 million followers around the world.
Indian Prime Minister and member of the Sikh religion, Manmohan Singh, made a statement to express his grief and sadness that a religious group was being targeted so deliberately: “That this senseless act of violence should be targeted at a place of religious worship is particularly painful,” said Singh.
Meanwhile, the top Sikh religious body, said it would send a committee to meet Singh and India’s ambassador to the US to demand Sikhs be protected from future attacks.
This attack is the second massacre to take place in the United States in the past weeks. The gun control law is currently on everyone lips, and it will be a topic for discussed ahead of the Presidential elections.