Manushi had also carried investigatory reports
|Lest We Forget|
|On the 28th Anniversary of the Massacre of Sikhs in 1984|
|Author(s) : Madhu Kishwar|
In the aftermath of Indira Gandhi’s assassination in 1984 by two Sikh security guards, North India witnessed the most gruesome anti Sikh massacre.
The Congress Party prides itself as the repository of secular values and never tires of attacking BJP for mixing religion with politics. However, the record of the Congress Party in fomenting riots and massacres is no better, if not far worse than that of BJP. As an illustration we provide the following account written on the basis of my firsthand exposure and interviews with the survivors of and witnesses to the anti Sikh pogrom that engulfed Delhi and large parts of North India starting 31st October 1984, the very morning that Indira Gandhi was assassinated. The mayhem lasted till the 3rd of November 1984. Over 10,000 Sikhs were put to death in gruesome ways in different towns and cities of North India. In Delhi alone, over 3000 Sikhs were burnt alive and numerous women sexually brutalized, though at the time, the Government claimed only 600 had died.
At the time, the media had projected the killings in North India as fallout of Hindu Sikh “riots”. However, Manushi challenged this description and argued that a riot presupposes two or more communities attacking each other. There was no retaliatory violence on the part of Sikhs because they were altogether unprepared for the onslaught. Since the killings were one way, it could only be called a “massacre”.
Mahatma Gandhi had painstakingly built the Congress Party as a unique experiment in inclusive and democratic politics in a multi-ethnic, multi-religious society. But the Congress of today has very little resemblance to the party created by Mahatma Gandhi. From Indira Gandhi’s regime onwards, Congress Party leaders have been involved in instigating and leading numerous riots, pogroms and massacres involving Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs. Bhiwandi, Bhagalpur, Jamshedpur, Hyderabad, Meerut, Malliana, Ahmedabad, Surat, Mumbai and a host of other cities and towns in India witnessed a series riots, pogroms and massacres—instigated and orchestrated by Congress politicians. Knowledgeable people in Gujarat testify that even in the post Godhra riots Congress workers jubilantly joined the BJP-RSS killer brigades on the streets of Ahmedabad and elsewhere. The law and order machinery of our “secular” Indian State has willingly collaborated in such crimes through various acts of commission and omission. Like the BJP, Congress men who engineer such riots are not motivated by religious fervour. These massacres have been a product of their desperate search for consolidated vote banks.
The following report was the product of the active engagement of Manushi volunteers in combating the violence and providing relief to the victims as part of Nagrik Ekta Manch..