More than seven months after the Indian army marched into Punjab and raided the Golden Temple; the state still remains off-limits to the independent world journalists. No other Government has tried to hide facts from its own people for so long and with such wanton misuse of power even during wars. Chellaney, a lone Associated Press reporter who tried to find and report the truth has a case of sedition filed against him by the Indian Government. New York Times (10/23/84) editorialized this under the caption “Truth on Trial in India.” A team of senior democratic senators from U.S. headed by Senator John Glenn during a _ recent trip to India was not permitted to meet the Sikh leaders (India Aboard, 1/4/85).
Of course a lot has happened after the fateful events of the first week of June 1984 in Amristar. The wide spread arrests and killings of Sikhs including women and children throughout Punjab by the police and the army did not succeed in stifling the voice of those who survived. According to numerous newspaper reports “‘Almost all of the able bodied Sikh (males between 15 and 35 have been seized’ (Globe and Mail, 12/17/84) and thousands butchered or burnt alive following Indira Gandhi’s assassination. The People’s Union for Democratic Rights and The People’s Union For Civil Liberties in Delhi have provided gory details of open genocide of Sikh’s in a Nov. 1984 publication “WHO ARE THE GUILTY.” This includes first hand reports of carnage of the Sikhs and lists of Indira Congress Hindu Cabinet Ministers, MP’s, Youth Congress leaders, Municipal Corporation Members, Police officials and numerous other individuals who openly instigated, abetted and participated in the orgy of murder, arson, burning alive and reckless destruction of Sikh life and property.
And how did Mr. “Clean”, Rajiv Gandhi, react to this carnage? India Today of 12/15/84 provided the answer: “It is purely out of political compulsion that he refused to order a judicial inquiry into the communal riots in Delhi and other places as it might have led to the indictment of some members of his own party.” Also, it is noteworthy, how the so-called ‘‘secular democracy’ treated the surviving relative of Sikhs, “On November 15, the Nagrik Ekta Manch (NEM), a recently formed body which has done considerable relief work, filed a writ petition in the Delhi High Court seeking to restrain the government from (arbitrarily) closing down the two main official camps. It also pleaded that the court direct the Government that it should not harass voluntary agencies’ workers or pull down camps set up by them. The court has now restrained Delhi Administration from compelling inmates to leave camps or in any way obstruct the work being done by voluntary agencies.’ Thus it is obvious that the ‘‘secular democracy” will not only protect Sikhs from marauding extremist Hindu mobs, or organize any relief work itself but will not stop harassing and interfering in the work of voluntary agencies until directed by the courts to do so.
And then came the national elections which amply proved, if a proof was needed, that the so called secular Indian Democracy is, at its core and in practice, a manifestation of the Hindu, Hindi, Hindustan Syndrom. The _ prophetic words of Khushwant Singh written almost 30 years ago in a classic, “History of the Sikhs,” vols. 1 and 2 Princeton Univ. press, are a stark reminder of the true nature of the facade of Indian Democracy and the fate of minorities like Sikhs in it. He concluded in vol. 2 (1966) ‘‘. . . with the resurgence of Hinduism, the official commitment to secularism is being reduced to a meaningless clause in the constitution. The emphasis on Sanskrit and Hindi, study of the Aryan classics, insertion of cow protection as a_ directive clause of the constitution, the increase in the number of cow protection societies, the growth of Hindu political groups such as the Bharatiya Jan Sangh and the militant R.S.S., and the suspicion with which other minorities have come to be regarded are but some indications of the way the wind is blowing. Hindus, who form 80 percent of the population, will in due course make Hinduism the state religion of India. In conclusion the only chance of survival of the Sikhs as a separate community is to create a state in which they form a compact group, where the teaching of Gurmukhi and the Sikh religion is compulsory, and where there is an atmosphere of respect for the traditions of their Khalsa forefathers.”’
Khushwant Singh was placated by a nominated seat in the Indian Parliament by none other than Indira Gandhi. Yet when Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale started echoing the same theme with both courage and conviction, he was labelled an ‘“‘extremist’’ and a “‘separatist.’ The fact unmistakably remains; both Khushwant Singh and Sant Jarnail Singh are right and that the ‘‘only chance of survival of the Sikhs as a separate community is to create a state … where there is an atmosphere of respect for the traditions of their Khalsa forefathers.”
An ignorant mind leads to ignorant action.
Unless man follows Guru’s path, He cannot rid himself
Article extracted from this publication >> February 8, 1985