22-year-old Harman Singh on May 15 broke religious protocol and helped cradle the bleeding head of a 5-year-old boy lying by the roadside after being struck by a car. The wearing of turbans is mandatory for Sikh men, represents spirituality, honour and piety and cannot be removed in public.
After the incident, Harman made headlines around the world and became the national hero for his selfless human act; a news crew from New Zealand’s OneNews then went to interview him at his home. When the report was aired, viewers were appalled to see his modest lifestyle. The house was decked out in plastic garden chairs and Singh was used to sleeping on a mattress on the floor.
Responding to the concerns, the TV channel’s news team decided to reward him by buying him some much needed furnishings for his humble home and a week later, the channel went back to interview Harman on his new-found fame and used the opportunity to spring their surprise – the channel delivered a truckload of new furniture at his door, part of a gift to repay his kindness. A tearful Singh said, “This the biggest surprise of my life.”
A TV Station Did Something Amazing To Thank The Sikh Man Who Unwrapped His Turban To Save A Little Boy http://t.co/PHM7ckHteb
— Jess (@LoveeJessica98) May 25, 2015
— HuffPost UK (@HuffPostUK) May 25, 2015
The Sikh man who helped an accident victim in New Zealand by removing his turban is getting worldwide applause http://t.co/9JjhypFfTV
— Sachin Kalbag (@SachinKalbag) May 18, 2015
A turban is the most respected symbol of a Sikh. Respect to this young man. https://t.co/G2vpciYbsl
— Gautam Trivedi (@Gotham3) May 15, 2015
I love this story. Such a powerful image – Sikh man removes turban to help child http://t.co/YXi2k45rtb
— Annabelle Lee (@n8tvaffairs) May 15, 2015
Singh was launched into the spotlight after a picture of him using his turban as a neck sling for Daejon Pahia went viral. “I saw a child down on the ground and a lady was holding him. 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. And I think anyone else would have done the same as me,” Singh told The New Zealand Herald.