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Anti Sikh Articlle In Guradian Uk During Partition

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FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT

LAHORE, AUGUST 25 (DELAYED).

Master Tara Singh, the village schoolmaster who rose to be one of the chief leaders of the Sikhs, declared in an interview in Amritsar to-day that he hoped there would one day be a return of Sikh rule in the Punjab. Sikhs felt for the Punjab, he said, as the Jews felt for Palestine. If not checked within three or four days the present trouble would spread and become extremely difficult to control.

He recited a long list of grievances against the Moslems in general and against Pakistan and the West Punjab Governments, the boundary award, General Rees's Boundary Force, and especially against its British officers, whom he accuses of being pro-Moslem (the extreme virulence with which the Boundary Force is accused of partisanship by both sides is indirectly a great tribute to it).

Life is slowly returning to the shattered city of Amritsar, which looks as if it had been bombed heavily, and the surrounding countryside is quieter. Moslems are on the move and there are few Moslem villages left to burn. Master Tara Singh's appeal for peace, dropped in pamphlets from aircraft, is thought to have had a favourable effect, although, it was a double-edged document declaring simultaneously that the Sikhs would never accept the boundary award and must be prepared to fight to death for their just rights.

10,000 killed near Amritsar

According to the best neutral sources not fewer than 10,000 Moslems have lost their lives in the Amritsar district alone during August. Three battalions with tank support have been actively engaged in breaking up Sikh raiding parties – in one affray they killed 61 men – but now their main task is the protection of refugees. The Sikhs have displayed the same ruthlessness and brutality as in the Jullundur district. Out of one Moslem village of 350 people which fought off a large Sikh mob for six hours only 40 survived. Women and children have been beaten to death and tortures have been inflicted.

Lady Mountbatten's Tour

Lady Mountbatten left to-day by air for Jullundur and Amritsar to tour the refugee camps and hospitals of the East Punjab. She is accompanied by the India Health Minister, Mrs. Kaur. Both are expected to return to-morrow.

These archive extracts are compiled by members of the Guardian's research and information department. Email: research.department@guardian.co.uk

http://www.guardian.co.uk/theguardian/2011/aug/29/archive-indian-proposal-to-pakistan-1947

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Not entirely surprising. Most news articles, tv shows and movies about Partition are like this. Even the part about using tanks against Sikh civilians isnt surprising. Supposedly Montbatten wanted the RAF to firebomb East Punjabi villages and towns where there were large Sikh populations. When he was told they couldnt do it, he wanted the Indian and British armies to force Sikhs onto trains and deport them to Central India, but luckily he didnt get his way on that either.

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Not entirely surprising. Most news articles, tv shows and movies about Partition are like this. Even the part about using tanks against Sikh civilians isnt surprising. Supposedly Montbatten wanted the RAF to firebomb East Punjabi villages and towns where there were large Sikh populations. When he was told they couldnt do it, he wanted the Indian and British armies to force Sikhs onto trains and deport them to Central India, but luckily he didnt get his way on that either.

It is still a mystery why Britishers were against Sikhs during partition.It is well knwon fact that Britishers nurtured the martial spirit of sikhs for their benefit and Proportion of Sikhs was very high in British Indian army

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It is still a mystery why Britishers were against Sikhs during partition.It is well knwon fact that Britishers nurtured the martial spirit of sikhs for their benefit and Proportion of Sikhs was very high in British Indian army

I dont think anyone has really looked into it or researched it. Off the top of my head, I think it has a lot to do with how cosy the Punjabi Muslim Elite and British Elite were. Jinnah spent a lot of time with white colonialists. Add to that the British are insidious when it comes to international relations. Sikhs were useful when it came to fighting other 'martial races' like the Germans, Turks, Japanese etc but not good political bedfellows. Not every British person liked Sikhs. In the Indian war letters thread, Dalsingh posted one letter which mentioned how an English officer goaded a Sikh into charging at the enemy for no reason and getting killed. Many British saw the Sikhs as turbulent and overemotional like children. The Punjabi Musis were seen as stoic and more like the English than anyone else in India. Even today the word 'Khalsa' and 'Sikh Nation' upset some of the island monkeys. For example, there was a thread on the British Army forum where a possible Sikh recruit referred to himself as a 'Khalsa Sikh' and a lot of people took that to mean something to do with the Anglo-Sikh Wars! Come to think of it, Khalsa Punjab was one of only 4 major threats the British Empire ever faced in all the centuries it existed (the others being Napoleonic France, Early 20th century Germany and Imperial Japan). The Elites in England dont forget their history easily.

We English are good at forgiving our enemies; it releases us from the obligation of liking our friends.

-P.D. James,

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The british stirred up the riots in partition they put everyone against each other, we have sources now telling us they put pigs infront of mosques and cow heads in front of mandirs. They turned sikhs against muslims both fighting people went on a killing spree that went to the millions. Muslims took women converted and or raped them in the millions, sikhs and hindus took revenge and some raped muslim women, kidnapped some converted them, more revenge followed it was a blood spree everywhere. Nehru, Gandhi, Jinaah and the British watched each party went to there own power, money and so forth while humanity killed itself, people lost homes and businesses, hatred was left in there hearts. These are the stories of our grandparents we hear as 2nd, 3rd, 4th generations from that as time goes on we will all end up forgetting such events perhaps we will not exist with time.

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An Englishman does everything on principle: he fights you on patriotic principles; he robs you on business principles; he enslaves you on imperial principles.

George Bernard Shaw

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It is still a mystery why Britishers were against Sikhs during partition.

the sikhs were a pain in the ass of dividing the country. everywhere else it was straightforward except punjab and that was because of the sikh minority there. Being in such small numbers the Sikhs had to resort to threats of the sword to protect themsleves, and this made them out to be troublemakers in the great british scheme of things. Whereas in reality the Sikhs were perturbed and rightly so, of ending up with nothing (which they eventually did) that they could not rule out violence to acheive their dreams.

Also the Brits initially tried to guide the Sikhs into getting a better deal, but the Sikhs leaders were just too thick to see beyond the hindu arse, that they, the brits just gave up.

Mountie threatened one of the Sikh leaders that he would blow the Sikhs out of existence if they didnt lay their weapons down in 1947.

sometimes im glad the RA blew his ass up.

just got back from Panjab yesterday. have brought a book from the muslims perspective of division of panjab. will let you know if its any good.

Edited by chatanga1

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An Englishman does everything on principle: he fights you on patriotic principles; he robs you on business principles; he enslaves you on imperial principles.

George Bernard Shaw

This sounds like post WW2 American foreign policy.

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take a look at the post colonial divisions in Africa. it's interesting that many states have a very large ethnic minority in it along with a majority.If state lines had been set up differently this would not have happened. it's almost like the divisions were set up a certain way to prevent Africa from getting it's act together.

Edited by Xylitol

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Sikhs were the scapegoat for the 1947 violence. When violence happened it happened from all sides Hindu, Muslim and Sikhs. After 1947 violence was over the Hindus and Muslims were getting friendly with one another, they did not want to blame each other for the violence. So Sikhs were very conveniently brushed as the main perpetrators of violence when the truth is, of the three communities involved Sikhs were the biggest losers. It was in response to the Anti Sikh media campaign that Gurbachan Singh Talib wrote his book setting the record straight.

http://voi.org/books/mla/

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Finished this book by and large, it is a interesting book, and there are recollections from both sides on the violence that happened.

One recurring theme of partition and also in this book, especially from the Muslims is the "scale of violence against helpless Muslims in east panjab by sikh criminals" and that Sikhs killed thousands of muslims without provocation.

Here is a sentence from this book, which puts the muslim view of muslims killing Sikhs in 1946, march 1947, into a clearer light:

"There were a few isolated incidents against Sikhs and Hindus in Rawalpindi, after which the SIkhs and Hindus volountarily moved to east panjab, knowing that rawalpindi would end up in Pakistan."

This for me, sums it up that the Muslims in general are not prepared to look at their own actions, while condeming like reactions against them. They werent then, I guess they are still arent now. Even now the muslims youngsters i have spoken to about partition say this.

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What really undid the Sikh claim to having a greater area included into East Punjab was the nature of the government in the UK being from the Labour party. The Sikh claim was that they held the most land and paid the most agricultural land taxes in the central Punjab and the Hindus were the majority in the cities and owned most of the industries in the area. The Muslims although a majority did not have the same attachment to the land as the Sikh landowner or a financial stake in the area as the Hindus had. Such a claim fell on deaf ears of the Labour government which had come to power to fight for the so-called working classes. Had there been a Conservative govt in the UK at that time it is likely they would have given more emphasis to the land and factory ownership in working out the partition boundary. The Labour govt considered the Muslims as the downtrodden working class and the Sikhs and Hindus as the upper classes.

The stories that the British acted as agent provocateurs and incited the partition riots are patently false and are just an attempt by Hindus and Sikhs to blame the British instead of blaming the Muslims for the violence done against them. You get such stories because Hindus and Sikhs want a reason why the Muslims who in the popular discourse lived in peace with them pre-1947 were able to kill them so mercilessly in 1947. They forget that Pakistan was sold to the Muslims as a place where the roles would be reversed, the Sikh and Hindu moneylenders and landowners would be kicked out and their properties doled out to the Muslims. The Muslims prior to 1947 were a lazy unambitious bunch who blamed their poverty on the Sikhs and Hindus. Where they held land the farmed it poorly.

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Finished this book by and large, it is a interesting book, and there are recollections from both sides on the violence that happened.

One recurring theme of partition and also in this book, especially from the Muslims is the "scale of violence against helpless Muslims in east panjab by sikh criminals" and that Sikhs killed thousands of muslims without provocation.

Here is a sentence from this book, which puts the muslim view of muslims killing Sikhs in 1946, march 1947, into a clearer light:

"There were a few isolated incidents against Sikhs and Hindus in Rawalpindi, after which the SIkhs and Hindus volountarily moved to east panjab, knowing that rawalpindi would end up in Pakistan."

This for me, sums it up that the Muslims in general are not prepared to look at their own actions, while condeming like reactions against them. They werent then, I guess they are still arent now. Even now the muslims youngsters i have spoken to about partition say this.

The violence against the Muslims in East Punjab was termed the 'Sikh Plan' in Pakistani official circles as well as the media. The Muslim League and Jinnah probably hoped that after the Rawalpindi violence the Sikhs would be cowed into accepting Pakistan and Jinnah would have a Pakistan from the Khyber to Delhi by including the East Punjab in Pakistan. The Pakistan government even went to the United Nations to complain about the level of anti-Muslim violence in East Punjab mainly accusing the Sikhs for the violence. This is typical of the Muslim mentality, they pick a fight and then complain when they get the worst of it! Although most of the Sikh writings about the partition do not mention any plan but there was a definite scheme in place to use violence to force the Muslims out of East Punjab. This was natural as millions of Sikhs were being made homeless and destitute and land was needed for their resettlement in East Punjab. It was not only the actual violence but also the threat and the fear of violence that made the Muslims leave East Punjab. had it been up to Nehru and Gandhi they would have kept the Muslims and probably resettled the Sikhs and Hindus in other areas. Fortunately the Sikh leaders kept to their plan and hence the Sikhs and Hindus from West Punjab were resettled in East Punjab. It is possible that the Jewish leadership in Israel also learnt a lesson from the Punjab partition to also use violence to affect the exit of Arabs out of the Jewish state in 1948. During the 1948 war the Jews managed to explode some bombs Arab areas which made more noise than normal bombs and the rumour quickly spread amongst the Arabs that the Jews had nuclear bombs! In 1947 in the border areas of West Punjab there was a real fear amongst the Muslims that the Sikhs were planning an invasion of Pakistan in order to take back their lands!

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had it been up to Nehru and Gandhi they would have kept the Muslims and probably resettled the Sikhs and Hindus in other areas. Fortunately the Sikh leaders kept to their plan and hence the Sikhs and Hindus from West Punjab were resettled in East Punjab.

One of the few things our people got right.

One thing I forgot to mention was the patience and bearing of the Sikh community, in not attacking Muslims, despite the overwhelming provocation of Hazara, dec 1946, and Rawalpindi, march 1947. Even upto August 1947, they only fought in defence.

Tony you have made av ery good point about muslims starting fights and complaining when they got beat, Direct Action Day in Calcutta, in 1946 is a prime example of this.

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One of the few things our people got right.

One thing I forgot to mention was the patience and bearing of the Sikh community, in not attacking Muslims, despite the overwhelming provocation of Hazara, dec 1946, and Rawalpindi, march 1947. Even upto August 1947, they only fought in defence.

Unfortunately this patience was seen as weakness by the Muslims. If anything the non retaliation after the Rawalpindi killings probably emboldened the Muslims into thinking that they could kill Sikhs with impunity without any fear of retaliation. The Muslim leadership then also believed that they did not need to make any concessions to the Sikhs as the Sikhs would be cowed into becoming a part of Pakistan due to the violence. Muslims had even started to attack Sikhs and Hindus in areas which were later to become part of East Punjab. Only the overwhelming violence that started after the boundary was announced convinced the Muslims to move to Pakistan.

Tony you have made av ery good point about muslims starting fights and complaining when they got beat, Direct Action Day in Calcutta, in 1946 is a prime example of this.

The Muslim league premier of Bengal Suhrawardy who had organised direct action day and the killings of non-Muslims in Calcutta was one of those joining Gandhi in a fast appealing for the violence to stop but only after the Hindus had started to retaliate in Calcutta and the Muslims were the ones getting killed in large numbers!

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The Muslim league premier of Bengal Suhrawardy who had organised direct action day and the killings of non-Muslims in Calcutta was one of those joining Gandhi in a fast appealing for the violence to stop but only after the Hindus had started to retaliate in Calcutta and the Muslims were the ones getting killed in large numbers!

Have been reading about this episode in Indian history. There are extremely few books about the "The Great Calcutta Killings", which is really surprising.

The retaliation against the Muslims began when the Sikhs of Calcutta joined in to help the HIndus. This turned the tide and the boot soon shifted to the other foot. Then those instigators soon began to regret their actions.  It repeated itself over the partition of Panjab but over many months.

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