NY ‘Sikh Project’ to highlight community heroes

sikh-2A Sikh subway driver who saved countless lives by reversing a train headed for ground zero on 9/11 and a decorated Sikh-American army veteran are among the several men and women from the community profiled in an art exhibition to showcase their perseverance in the face of backlash against them after the terror attack.

As the US commemorates the 15th anniversary of the September 11 attacks today, the photography exhibition ‘Sikh Project’ will run from September 17-25 here to highlight the aesthetics of the Sikh articles of faith, including the turban and beard.
The exhibition is a collaboration between civil rights group ‘The Sikh Coalition’ and acclaimed British photographers Amit and Naroop.
Featuring nearly 40 powerful portraits of Sikh-Americans of various ages, the exhibition will tell the story of the triumphs and perseverance of the community that has overcome great challenges in the 15 years since the attacks in 2001.

As 15th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks approaches, The Sikh Coalition, a nonprofit civil rights group, is also reflecting on its 15th anniversary. The organization grew out of a coalition formed on the night of Sept. 11, 2001, after an elderly Sikh man and two teenagers were assaulted in what it calls “reprisal attacks” in New York, according to The Sikh Coalition’s website. The group, then called the Coalition of Sikh Organizations of New York, issued its first press release on Sept. 12, 2001, condemning the terrorist attacks and calling for police to better protect its neighborhoods.

“The Sikh Coalition was founded in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 to provide legal aid resources and direct community support to a community that was thrown into crisis as the American public, through the media, began to equate the turban and beard with the face of terror,” The Sikh Coalition executive director Sapreet Kaur told NBC News. “Since then, we have evolved into an organization that is creating lasting impact in the courtroom, classroom, community, and halls of Congress on behalf of Sikhs across the United States.”

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