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Bill introduced in US Congress to name post office in Houston after slain Sikh police officer


HOUSTON: A legislation has been introduced in the US Congress to name a post office in Houston after slain Indian-American Sikh police officer Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal, who was shot dead on duty during a traffic stop in Texas in September, to recognise his ultimate sacrifice.

Dhaliwal, 42, was the first Sikh sheriff's deputy in Harris county with a population of over 10,000 Sikhs. He made national headlines when he was allowed to grow a beard and wear a turban on the job.

He was gunned down on September 27 while conducting a routine mid-day traffic stop in the northwest of Houston. "Deputy Dhaliwal represented the very best of our community he worked for equality, connection, and community through his life of service to others," Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher said as she introduced the legislation that calls for naming the post office located at 315 Addicks Howell Road as the 'Deputy Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal Post Office'.

"The Deputy Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal Post Office will serve as a permanent reminder of his service, his sacrifice, and his example for us all. I am honoured to be able to recognise Deputy Dhaliwal in this way, and look forward to working with all of my Texas colleagues to pass this legislation quickly," Fletcher said.

"This is a fitting honour for my late friend, Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal. As a member of the community, he inspired many-with a vibrant spirit and infectious optimism. His loss has left a void, but his legacy will continue to live on through his family, friends, and the entire community," said Harris County Commissioner Adrian Garcia.

"Deputy Dhaliwal was a committed member of our office and community who served with the utmost integrity. Thanks to Congresswoman Fletcher for honouring his service and sacrifice with the introduction of this legislation," said Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez.

Last month, the Houston Police Department announced a policy allowing officers to wear articles of faith while on duty, becoming the largest law enforcement agency in Texas to do so.

In October, Congresswoman Fletcher led the entire Houston delegation in introducing a resolution to honour the life and mourn the loss of Deputy Dhaliwal.