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Man charged in connection to vandalism of Komagata Maru memorial in Vancouver

Warrant has been issued for arrest of 39-year-old man

One man has been charged with mischief in connection to the vandalism of the Komagata Maru memorial in Vancouver’s Coal Harbour last August.

On Wednesday (Jan. 12), Vancouver police said a four-month investigation resulted in one charge of mischief against Yuniar Kurniawan, 39.

The memorial was installed in 2013 to pay tribute to the 376 passengers aboard the Komagata Maru steamship, who travelled from then-British India to Vancouver on May 23, 1914.

The people on board were mostly of Sikh heritage, but also included people of Muslim and Hindu faiths. Despite coming from a British colony, the passengers were not allowed to disembark from the ship due to racist policies of the day.

After two months of remaining on board the ship with little to no medical aid, food or water, the ship was forced to travel back to India where 19 were shot and killed and many others were jailed as political agitators.

The City of Vancouver made a formal apology to the victims in May 2021 and established Komagata Maru Remembrance Day, to be marked each year on May 23.

There is a B.C.-wide warrant out for Kurniawan’s arrest.

READ MORE: Vancouver’s Komagata Maru memorial vandalized with white handprints, graffiti


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