We note with concern that the so-called ‘Asian’ sex gangs recently and all too often in the news are in fact almost always of Pakistani origin. The use of the term ‘Asian’ to describe the perpetrators of these crimes is wholly inaccurate and unfair to other communities of Asian Origin.By law the British Government requires all authorities including the police, CPS and prisons, to collect ethnicity figures, which use the categories set out in the Census; Asian/Asian British: Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Chinese and Any other Asian background. We believe that in this case the government itself is sanctioning the use of term Asian as a way of clouding responsibility.
It is also a cause for concern that the religion of each person is noted; when in custody in police stations; when on remand in prison and when a convicted felon. Yet the government in the CEOP report and in its dealing with the media has advised that this information does not exist.
We believe the reluctance of the media and the government to discuss the issue that there is a disproportionate representation of Muslims in such cases and why the victims are almost always non-Muslim girls is only adding to the vote bank of far-right groups such as the BNP and the EDL.
In addition we wish to bring to your attention the fact that the same sex gangs have also targeted Hindu and Sikh girls in the same manner and these cases are rarely reported on as they hardly ever reach the courts.
We believe that political correctness stifles debate and will not facilitate a frank and mature discussion or solutions to get to the root of why the above pattern is emerging in these crimes and how to help find a solution to the problem. This can only be done by working with the responsible majority in the community involved. We will not be able to do that if we mask the identity of those involved based on misguided views of ‘protecting a vulnerable community’ of the perpetrators and not looking at the vulnerable community of victims.
Lord Singh Of Wimbledon CBE – Network of Sikh Organisations UK
Anil Bhanot OBE – Hindu Council UK
Ashish Joshi, Sikh Media Monitoring Group UK