Canadian Legislatures, Politicians Commemorate 37th anniversary of 1984 Sikh Holocaust

Nearly a dozen of Members of Parliament (MP), Members of Provincial Parliament (MPP) and some other politicians in Canada have commemorated the 37th anniversary of Sikh history’s third ghallughara (holocaust) carried out by the Indian army during the first week of June 1984. They paid tribute over social media in their own words and also shared pictures of demolished Akal Takht Sahib.

File Photo: Sikhs protesting the 1984 attack on Sri Darbar Sahib

These officials include Jagmeet Singh (Leader of Canada’s New Democratic Party – NDP), Tim S. Uppal (Member of Parliament for Edmonton Mill Woods), Randeep S. Sarai, Irfan Sabir (MLA Calgary-McCall), Diljit Singh Brar (MLA Burrows, Manitoba), Patrick Brown (Mayor of Brampton), Amarjot Sandhu (MPP Brampton), Gurratan Singh (former Ontario MLA), Maninder Sidhu (MP for Brampton East and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Development), Jasraj Singh Hallan (Member of Parliament for Calgary Forest Lawn), Prabmeet Sarkaria (MPP for Brampton South).

Jagmeet Singh tweeted, “In memory of the Sikh genocide, we reflect on the lives lost and on the injustices, so they never happen again. I join and express my solidarity with the thousands of Canadians that live with this pain as survivors and bearers of intergenerational trauma”.

“I want to take a moment to reflect on the Sikh genocide. Every June, we remember the calculated and planned killing of Sikhs that began in Amritsar, the Golden Temple, and continued to November. This was a clear campaign by the Indian government to target and to kill Sikhs, just because of who they are are”, he said in a video message shared in the tweet.

Singh added, “We remember the lives lost because as Sikhs, its our commitment to remember the injustice so they never happen again, not just to Sikhs but to anyone and in memory of the genocide, let us commit to building a world where everyone can live with peace, justice and human rights. And let us remember those that lost their lives so we can prevent any future injustice from ever happening again”.

“First week of June 1984, during an auspicious time for Sikhs, the Sikh holiest place of worship, Harmandir Sahib, was attacked by the Indian Army. This orchestrated attack killed thousands of innocent men, women and children. #NeverForget1984 #SikhGenocide“, said Uppal sharing a picture of the Akal Takht Sahib building that was razed by the army.

Sarai said, “37 years ago, the Indian army attacked Sri Harimandir Sahib, known as the “Golden Temple”, and 40 other Gurdwaras across India. Innocent Sikhs that gathered for prayer were met with soldiers, tanks and artillery”.

“The violence that followed devastated some of the holiest sites of Sikh faith, and thousands of men, women, and children lost their lives. 37 years later, we still remember how innocent blood pooled in these temples. June 1984 remains a time that no Sikh will never forget as the generational pain caused persists to this day. No place of worship for people of any faith should ever be violated in such a way, and the innocent lives taken will never be forgotten. #NeverForget1984“, he added.

Sabir said, “My thoughts are with the Sikh community in Calgary and across the world as they mark and reflect on the anniversary of the invasion of Darbar Sahib, remember the lives lost to #SikhGenocide, and continue to seek truth, justice, and reconciliation”.

“Let’s feel the pain Sikh Community went through and continues to feel till date. Indian Army surrounded Sikh Holy place Harmandir Sahib (The Golden Temple), opened fire and killed 8 people on June 1st, 1984 and continued. My dear Friends! Please send healing thoughts and prayers to the Sikh Community”, said Brar on Facebook sharing picture of demolished Akal Takht Sahib.

Brown has tweeted #NeverForget1984, while Amarjot Sandhu says, “Today marks 37 years of Operation Blue Star, when Darbar Sahib, the holiest shrine of Sikhism was attacked and thousands of innocent Sikh brothers and sisters lost their lives. #NeverForget1984“.

“37 years ago today, when Sikhs were commemorating the sacrifice of our 5th Guru, the Indian government launched a military invasion into the Harmandir Sahib Complex and 40+ gurdwaras across Punjab. We remember the 1984 #SikhGenocide & the countless lives lost. #NeverForget1984“, tweets Gurratan Singh.

“June marks the 37th anniversary of Operation Bluestar. Let us never forget the innocent Sikh lives lost in the Darbar Sahib in June 1984”, says Maninder Sidhu.

Hallan said, “Every year, in the first week of June, we mourn the loss of thousands of men, women and children in an orchestrated attack on the Sikhs holiest place of worship, Harmandir Sahib, by the Indian army. We remember them daily in our ardas/prayers”.

“37 years ago, Harmandir Sahib was attacked during Operation Blue Star. Let us never forget the thousands of innocent lives lost in June 1984”, said Sarkari.


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