Members stunned after vandals smash windows of Surrey temple
Members of a Surrey temple are putting their place of worship back together after vandals shattered their windows with a baseball bat.
Security cameras rolled as two men, each with bats in hand, walked toward the Lakshmi Narayan Temple on 140th Street sometime between Saturday night and Sunday morning.
Shortly after, a cloud of dust – presumably from a smashed window below – floats into the air before the men are seen disappearing into the night.
“I was shocked,” said Vinay Sharma, secretary for the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society.
After getting a call from a priest who discovered the damage, Sharma rushed to the temple to find three broken windows, a busted baseball bat and glass everywhere.
His first thought was that the act of vandalism had the makings of a hate crime.
“There was no robbery, there was no other damage, nobody tried to enter the building,” he said.
“Nobody has an idea that this kind of attack, or this kind or racism attack or hatred crime can happen here.”
Sharma said members are now wondering why their temple was targeted.
“They have concern over what happened and how it happened,” he said.
“It’s a peaceful place and I have no idea why somebody will do this and why somebody will hate a religious place, a place where everybody’s welcome to pray.”
Mounties are now investigating the attack and asking for help identifying the two men seen in the video.
“A place of worship is one more place that people hold sacred. It’s a very personal attack,” said Surrey RCMP spokesman Sgt. Dale Carr.
Sharma said he hopes that anybody has any issues with the temple talks to them instead of resorting to vandalism.
“This place, it is not just for Hindus or Sikhs, this place is for everybody,” he said.
Surrey RCMP are asking those with information about the attack to contact them at 604-599-0502 or Crime Stoppers 1-800-222-8477.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Scott Bills