A regional daily newspaper has apologised to a Sikh temple after publishing a three-page advert which contained claims of racism.
Last month the Leicester Mercury carried an ad feature which contained allegations of racism against a named volunteer at the Guru Nanak Gurdwara, a Sikh temple in the city.
However the Trinity Mirror-owned newspaper has now accepted that the feature, headlined ‘Racism at Sikh Temple in Leicester,’ broke its advertising terms and conditions and should not have been published.
In its Wednesday 31 August edition, the Mercury published an apology to the temple making clear that the allegations in question are denied and that the paper remains on good terms with its management.
The apology, pictured above, reads: “On August 6, the Mercury published a three-page advertisement relating to claims made about the Guru Nanak Gurdwara in Leicester.
“The advert contained a series of assertions, made by a third party, which contravened our terms and conditions of acceptance. In particular, the advert made anonymous allegations of racism at the temple.
“The allegations contained in the advert are denied absolutely both by members of the Temple’s management committee and by the volunteer who was named in it.
“They stress that racism of any form or description is neither practiced nor condoned. Rather, the Temple has always welcomed respectful non-Sikhs of all religions.
“For this reason, we accept that the advert should not have been published, and the Mercury apologises for any distress caused.
“The management committee has also requested that we publish confirmation that the Temple and the Mercury continue to have good relations.”
David Simms, Trinity Mirror’s regional managing director for the East Midlands said: “The copy we published was clearly an advertisement and should have been labelled as such.
“We should not have accepted the advertisement as it clearly was in breach of our conditions of acceptance of advertising.
“We have met with the people concerned and are now working with them collaboratively to put things right. They have accepted our apology.”