Oxford has a long tradition of welcoming people of all nationalities and religions.

Some have made their homes here, and the city has become richer with their presence.

So it is with great regret that we report today the cowardly attack on Sikh Rattandeep Singh Ahluwalia.

He was standing at a bus stop in Queen Street at midnight on Sunday, minding his own business, when one man shouted and swore at him, pulled off his turban and threw it on the pavement.

Then, as he struggled to defend himself, another man waved his fists in his face and shouted racist abuse.

Mr Ahluwalia thought Oxford was the best city he had lived in, and one of the safest in the world.

Not surprisingly, he has changed his mind. He is now afraid to go out alone late at night.

Up to 40 people were in Queen Street at the time of the attack.

It is surprising that none of them felt willing or able to go to Mr Ahluwalia's rescue.

We know the police advise against 'having a go', but surely there were one or two beefy individuals among the passersby who could have helped?

The least the onlookers can do is to contact the police and give them what help they can to catch these racist thugs.

Meanwhile, Mr Ahluwalia can rest assured that Oxford people are, by and large, a tolerant bunch and utterly condemn what happened to him.