Amrik Bajwa, a 68-year-old Indian-origin man residing in Slough, Berkshire in south-east England, has been sentenced to 18 months imprisonment by a UK court for posting an offensive video on social media that was found to be offensive to certain communities.
Bajwa was sentenced and fined £240 last week after pleading guilty to one count of sending an offensive, indecent, obscene, or menacing message or matter through a public communication network.
Thames Valley Police investigated the incident and issued a statement on Tuesday, announcing the sentencing of Bajwa for sending an offensive message on social media. The video, posted on TikTok on July 19 last year, reportedly targeted the Dalit community.
Sergeant Andrew Grant, the investigating officer from the Slough police station, expressed his satisfaction with the sentence given and stated that it sends a clear message that Thames Valley Police will not tolerate behaviour like that of Amrik Bajwa.
Amrik Singh Bajwa, a resident of the United Kingdom, has been sentenced to 18 weeks in jail for posting an offensive video on TikTok last year. Bajwa’s post was characterized as hate speech that targeted Dalit communities, by the Anti-Caste Discrimination Alliance (ACDA), a voluntary human rights organization campaigning against caste-based discrimination in the UK.
Although the conviction did not specifically refer to ‘caste’ as a protected characteristic in law, the Crime Prosecution Service (CPS) shared at the hearing the derogatory words ‘choora’ and ‘chamaar’ that Mr Bajwa used. The ACDA applauded the conviction as the result of several community organizations working together.
Thames Valley Police thanked all the key witnesses who assisted with the investigation into the case, which resulted in Bajwa’s arrest a few days after the post, on July 22, 2022. Bajwa was charged via postal requisition on March 2, 2023.
In response to the conviction, a spokesperson for the ACDA stated, “The 18 weeks sentence in jail reflects the severity of the harm Amrik Bajwa’s video caused the Dalit community. The video that Amrik Singh Bajwa posted on TikTok in 2022 was highly toxic and casteist in content.”
The spokesperson further added, “As a force, we are committed to protecting our communities and ensuring that criminal actions which have the potential to undermine community cohesion are dealt with robustly.”