Prince Rupert, Canada: In a telegraphic communication to Sant Harchand Singh Longowal, S. Harbhajan Singh, coordinator, Prince Rupert, Local Chapter of WSO of Canada described the agreement between Longowal and Rajiv Gandhi as “a sellout pact just for political aspirations, egotism and false dignity.” He called this action as anti-GURMAT and therefore unacceptable. “Sikhs all over the world will never forgive you. Santa like Bhai Mani Singh sacrificed their lives for Sikh cause and you have done quite the opposite. Wash this dark spot on the name of sants by surrendering to WAHEGURU and sacrifice your life, if you can,” says the telegram.
A message to all north Americans about another betrayal of Sikhs
BACKGROUND: August 15 is the Independence Day for India, but is a Black day for Sikhs. For joining with India upon its independence in 1947, the religious minority Sikhs were promised secularism to be later delivered only oppression and atrocities and all else regarded sinful in a democracy. On India’s Independence Day this year, we are commemorating Another Black Event imposed upon Sikhs recently.
ANTISIKH PROPAGANDA: Since 1947, the religion, culture, economy, and language of Sikhs have been increasingly suppressed despite that their contribution to the country has been many times their numbers suggest. When alienation of Sikhs intensified, some of them realized their increasingly but implicitly brewing extermination and hence raised voice against it. Such Sikhs were labeled extremists and separatists. Decades of suppression hyper alienated a few who then because of their acts were labeled terrorists and militants. Those less vociferous about government’s anti-Sikh policies and actions were labeled moderates. Using this terminology and backed by its censored press and fully controlled radio and TV broadcast, the government has launched a worldwide propaganda blitz against the Sikhs.
STATE TERROR AGAINST SIKHS: On the pretext of capturing a few hyper alienated Sikhs in June 1984, the government attacked some 150 Sikh shrines, including our Vatican, the Golden Temple. The army killed thousands of innocent pilgrims among which many were children and women. Thus they murdered the very spirit of the Anandpur Resolution a formal documentation on the autonomy demands of Sikhs. After the political assassination of Mr. Gandhi allegedly by two Sikhs, entire Sikh community was attacked; thousands of Sikhs were butchered or burnt alive. Several independent groups separately reported that the attacks were engineered and orchestrated by an unholy alliance between the ruling party and the police. Most persons identified to have planned this terror were given senior government offices instead of being brought to justice.
GANDHILONGOWAL PACT: Meantime, the government continued tactics to divide the Sikhs. They even maneuvered a split in the principal party of Sikhs the Akali Dal and recently managed to break the president Longowal and his thin following away from the main party. They then maneuvered Longowal to sign a pact which in fact is a sellout of Sikhs. Thousands of Sikh youth arrested under no charges under Draconian laws especially created for the purpose, remain prisoned. Thousands of soldiers who deserted the army to protect its attack on Sikh shrines continue being detained under heavy sentences. Sikhs are given nothing but a few promises. Time will prove how, by unfulfilling promises, the dynastic Gandhi government has grossly betrayed the Sikhs once gain.
PROBLEMS FOR CANAD AND U.S. SIKHS: India has extended victimization of Sikhs beyond its borders into N. America as well. The Sikh community here is being maligned by accusations which are false or unfounded (e.g. for causing the Air India crash). The Indian consulate staff and infiltrated agents in N. America are mandated to harass, spy on, and divide he Sikhs and to spread hatred against them. India is making life difficult for Sikhs who came here as refugees escaping its tyranny. Our helpless relatives remain unjustly imprisoned. Their torture continues. Their fundamental rights are being encroached gradually.
OUR PLEA: We urge our media, governments, and fellow N. Americans not to be misled by the hate propaganda against us. We need your support in restoring civil liberties of our relatives and the sanctity of our Vatican and other shrines. We urge the media to dig the truth. The Sikh refugees in Canada can only hope to live if allowed to stay here. We are confident that your understanding of our problems can take us a long way in our battle against the wholesale injustice to Sikhs, our relatives, and the mankind.
Sikh Canadian Society
Article extracted from this publication >> August 30, 1985