London, November 4: A British-Indian London Assembly member tabled a motion this week calling on the Metropolitan Police to include the breakdown of hate crimes by religion to tackle growing instances of anti-Hindu hate. Krupesh Hirani addressed the assembly, which deals with issues affecting Londoners as part of the Mayor of London-run Greater London Authority, to highlight instances of “Hinduphobia”. His motion, tabled on Thursday and agreed unanimously, called for the Met Police to work with local Hindu communities to encourage confidence in reporting hate crimes targeting Hindus.
“Hinduphobia has absolutely no place in London and beyond. Sadly, there has been a worrying rise in hate crimes faced by our community over the past year,” said Hirani. “Given that Hindus are the second most likely group to face religiously motivated hate crime, but that this isn’t seen in police data, shows that the police must, first, record this better and, secondly, respond to it better. I am pleased that the London Assembly supports holding the Metropolitan Police to account so that they build the confidence held in them by our community,” he said.
Hirani referenced the Crime Survey for England and Wales, which shows that Hindus are the second most likely religion to have been victims of religiously motivated hate crime. His motion reads: “This assembly calls for the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to work with local Hindu communities to encourage confidence in reporting Hindu hate crimes.” “The assembly further calls for the MPS to include the breakdown of hate crime by religion on the Crime Dashboard.” It quotes recent statistics from the UK Home Office which reveal that in 2022-2023 there were 291 hate crimes against Hindus, an increase on the previous year which saw 161 recorded hate crimes.
“This assembly further notes that despite having the second lowest figure of recorded hate crimes, in 2022, Hindus formed the second most likely religion to have been victims of religiously motivated hate crime according to the Crime Survey for England and Wales. This suggests that Hindu hate crime is not being effectively recorded by police services,” it adds. Hirani’s motion came ahead of Diwali and also welcomed Mayor Sadiq Khan’s “leadership in celebrating London’s diverse communities”, including Londoners celebrating the festival of lights with the Diwali on the Square annual event at Trafalgar Square last weekend. It brought hundreds together to the UK capital’s landmark square to enjoy dance, music, theatrical performances and Indian street food stalls.