US: First Sikh-American officer joins Indianapolis police dept
A 26-year-old Sikh-American has made history by becoming the first police officer from the community to join the police department in Indianapolis, the capital of the US state of Indiana, a media report has said.
Mittan Katoch feels it is a 'great honour' to join Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) as the first American-Sikh, the Indianapolis broadcaster RTV6 said.
"I honestly thought there might be more Sikh police officers in IMPD, but to learn I am the first is quite shocking," Katoch, a graduate of the department's 13th recruit class, was quoted as saying by the RTV6.
He said it has been his dream to become an officer since he was a child. "I used to write essays about it," he said.
"I've got tons of feedback, tons of support, comments on Facebook like 'hey, we're proud of you, way to lead the way.' I feel like I m the spearhead to the movement of getting different ethnicities into the department," he said.
According to IMPD, the current amount of minorities that make up the population of the department is about 18 per cent - however in Marion County, recent US Census data shows minorities make up more than 34 per cent of the population, the report said.
In 2015 and 2016, 17.3 per cent and 17.6 per cent of the IMPD's force were minorities, respectively.
Katoch said he is excited about his career and the chance to build a bridge between communities.
"Being born and raised in America, I'm Americanised enough to know I can do anything I want," he said. "This is the land of opportunity and to be a part of a police department that's reflective of that is awesome."