ABOVE: The Sikh man who gained worldwide attention for removing his turban to aid a car accident victim gets a surprise of his own
TORONTO – There may not be a clearer example of the old axiom “What goes around, comes around.”
Twenty-two-year-old Harman Singh earned global acclaim after photographs emerged of him removing his turban to aid a car accident victim in Auckland, New Zealand on May 15.
The gesture carried special significance as Singh, a practicing Sikh, is forbidden by religious tenet from removing his turban except in the most private of situations, such as a bath or shower.
But after six-year-old Daejon Pahia was struck by a car while on his way to school, Singh decided to break strict religious protocol and use his turban to stem the bleeding from the boy’s head wound.
“I saw a child down on the ground and a lady was holding him,” Singh told The New Zealand Herald. “His head was bleeding, so I unveiled my turban and put it under his head.”
“I wasn’t thinking about the turban. I was thinking about the accident and I just thought, ‘He needs something on his head because he’s bleeding.’ That’s my job — to help.”
A passerby was so moved by the scene of the Sikh man comforting the young boy that he snapped a photo. The photo became a viral sensation after it was posted online, with many praising Singh’s humanism and compassion.
He says his Facebook page was flooded with messages of thanks and support from around the world.
“Thousands of people have said ‘well done’. I was only doing what I had to and trying to be a decent member of the community,” Singh told the Daily Mail in Australia.
But incredibly, that good turn spawned another incredible act of compassion after a local New Zealand TV station interviewed Singh at his home – and viewers noticed the business student didn’t have much in the way of furniture.
Aside from a couple of plastic lawn chairs and a small plastic table, Singh didn’t have anything else in his apartment, which he shares with a roommate.
In the video from One News, a visibly surprised Singh is reduced to tears by the furniture delivery.
For their part, the family of the young boy remains incredibly grateful for Singh’s actions, and for his continuing compassion – even visiting the young boy in the hospital to check up on his progress.
“I just really want to thank him because I know it’s against his religion to take that kind of stuff off so I just really want to thank him because if it wasn’t for him my son wouldn’t be here,” the boy’s mother, Shiralee Pahia, told The New Zealand Herald.