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Rally and march for Remembrance, Justice and Freedom

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[align=center:c4586c6117]21st Anniversary of the Attack on the Golden Temple

Sikh Holocaust Remembrance Day for Justice & Freedom

12th June 2005[/align:c4586c6117]

Over 10,000 Sikhs from throughout the United Kingdom will march through London on 12 June 2005

The biggest remembrance rally for over 15 years

1000 black balloons will be released to commemorate the thousands dead and those who continue to languish in India’s prisons after 20 years without trial

Many people marching on Sunday have lost family and friends in the continuing human rights violations against civil rights activists.

On Sunday 12th June Sikhs from throughout the UK will converge on Hyde Park London for a rally to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1984 genocide of Sikhs in India.

On 3rd June 1984 a 25,000 strong contingent of the Indian armed forces attacked the Golden Temple complex with heavy artillery and tanks. The attack was not only illegal and unconstitutional, but was aimed to coincide with services to mark the anniversary of the first martyr of the Sikh faith, when in the scorching heat of the Punjabi summer thousands were thronging to pay their respects inside the precincts of the Golden Temple.

With a resonance to that first sacrifice in the 17th century, the newly appointed Prime Minister of India Dr Manmohan Singh in 1986 describes the attack during his tenure at Sidney Sussex College Camridge. He points to ‘the civil-rights movement which was initiated in 1982’ and ‘the brutal way in which it was suppressed’ and ‘the aftermath of the destruction of the Sikhs’ holiest shrine, the Akal Takhat, and the barbaric violence against Sikhs outside Punjab.’[1]

It is estimated the army invasion of the Golden Temple left 15,000 pilgrims dead and 30,000 people homeless. The attack was simultaneously carried out on 40 other historical shrines throughout Punjab to suppress the civil rights movement that had developed as a result of decades of discriminatory laws and actions by the Indian state against the Punjab region and the Sikhs.

Reports spoke of eye-witness accounts to the massacre and the killing of women and children in cold-blood and of Sikh prisoners being tied with their own turbans and then shot in the head. Medical staff were threatened, and some killed, if they gave food or water to pilgrims injured during the army onslaught.

Later in the winter of 1984, after the assassination of Indira Gandhi, mobs lead by Congress leaders committed murder, looting, arson and rape across India for over a week. The looting and murder centered on Delhi but spanned most of India left over 5000 Sikhs dead and over 60,000 homeless in Delhi alone: thousands more were left ‘missing’ and unaccounted for.

The fear and trauma for the people of Punjab hasn’t ended. Thousands are still languishing in prisons. Soldiers who left their barracks in protest of the attack on the Golden Temple are still held in jail. Families who lost relatives haven’t received any justice or compensation, whilst thousands of bounties have been paid to police and army officers for controlling a self-propelled cycle of killing and kidnap.

The thousands of Sikh lives and billions of rupees worth of Sikh property that were lost in Delhi in the Congress organised riots of November 1984 haven’t yet been accounted for, nor justice done or compensation given and property returned to the Sikh community. The only people to return to their status have been the supposed protectors of the people in the form of MP’s. Those same Congress leaders, Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar who have been accused of masterminding and leading the riots in Delhi in 1984 only last month were re-elected MPs and given Ministerial appointments brining further anguish and heartache to the Sikh community throughout the world.

Whilst no apology or independent inquiry has been forthcoming from India, the Sikh community in the United Kingdom will be making their displeasure clear on Sunday 6 June in London

Kiran Kaur from the West Midlands will be at the demonstration. ‘Two of my cousins disappeared in the summer of 1984. They had just finished school and were out playing on their bicycles. We know that the reason they were taken was because they wore orange turbans and so were seen as associated with the struggle. Their parents haven’t heard of or seen them since.’

“My brother was a qualified engineer and we haven’t seen him since 1986. He had only just returned home after completing his degree.’ Said Shindo who will not be joining the rally because she like thousands of others is afraid of repercussions against her family in Punjab. (Real name not given to protect anonymity).

Charan Singh from the North of England will be unable to travel to the march due to ill health but his family will be joining the protest. ‘My nephews had never been in any trouble and were both good and worked hard on their farm. The police killed them and then said they found guns and ammunition. We weren’t alone most families in our village have lost someone. If there were so many militants with this many guns why is it that there was no civil war in Punjab with all these guns that the police keep saying they find whenever they kill someone after they have tortured and held them?’

Strong images and vibrant messages will be the order of the day.

Rally and march for Remembrance, Justice and Freedom

Assembly at Hyde Park 12 noon

Rally 1 pm

March sets off from Hyde Park 2 pm

March ends at Temple Place 4 pm

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lol wil the slogan Sant Jarnail Singh Zindabad still be shoated at this years march.. !! ?

Also point to note I remember the Taksali singhs running behind their jathedar on his horse during hola mohalla shouting Sant Jarnail Singh Zindabad..

and you ppl call yourselves gursikhs.. yet run around denying a shaheed the honour of being shaheed...

But everyone attend to make a unified stance that we are not happy with what happened in 84 pre and post !!


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