'We are concerned about the report published in The Press: George Clark, Manager, Canterbury Migrants Centre
(caption for the above picture: taxis line up outside the Gurudwara Singh Sabha Christchurch on March 29 to show solidarity with the family and chalk out details on how to extend any help to them)
He was speaking in reference to a report published in Christchurch's The Press on March 31 - "Crash victims were newcomers to NZ". The story also appeared a day earlier on stuff.co.nz. The story referred to a fatal crash that took place on March 28 near Culverden in which two Indian boys were killed. "The police have told us that the investigation will take about a month to complete. Even the report in The Press mentions 'Police said an investigation into the crash was ongoing'. Inspite of this, the report adds 'It is understood they had driven onto the wrong side of the road'. This, we believe places the blame on the Indian boys even before the crash investigations are complete, which might have implications regarding insurance claims. I have sought clarification from The Press regarding this," Clark said.
Amrit Singh, a long-standing Indian community leader in Christchurch, who was quoted in the story also expressed his concerns over the way the story was reported. "Saying that 'it is understood they [Indian boys who were killed] had driven onto the wrong side of the road', and then saying later 'Police said an investigation into the crash was ongoing', doesn't make any sense. It seems The Press has done its own investigation even before the Police completed theirs", he said.
- This newspaper has also approached The Press for their reply on the clarification sought by the Canterbury Migrants Centre, which was yet to be received at the time of printing. We will be posting The Press' reply with the online story as soon as we receive it.
The victims as mentioned above were Kamal Preet Singh, 22, of Khasi Kalaan, District Ludhiana, Punjab, and Lovepreet Singh Waraich,19, of Village Ghumar Majra, Haryana from India. While Kamal was on a job search visa and was working at Metro Glass, Lovepreet had come to New Zealand on student visa six months ago. Both died on the spot. After hearing the shock news, the local Indian community gathered at the local Gurudwara Singh Sabha Christchurch on March 29, to show solidarity with the family and chalk out details on how to extend any help to the grief-stricken family. The community has appealed for donations, and has provided the following details:
Account name: Gurudwara Singh Sabha
Please add your name and 'funeral support' under reference.