GOVERNMENT ORGANISED CARNAGE [Sarkari Qatl-e-Aam]
THE MOTIVE BEHIND THE KILLINGS : TEACH THE SIKHS A LESSON
Mrs. Gandhi had been assassinated. Her son, Rajiv Gandhi, had not yet become prime minister. He had just alighted from an aircraft which brought him from Calcutta to Delhi. At the airport a group of party loyalists was waiting to condole him. Rajiv Gandhi’s first words to them were: Go and grieve in your home town instead of hanging around in Delhi.
As prime minister, among the first few lines he spoke at a public rally about the events after the assassination of his mother, was that infamous quote which pierced the heart of every right-thinking and sensitive citizen in the country. when a great tree falls the earth shakes. For this one remark alone he should have been tried in a court of law, to say the least. The statement was like a fresh assault on the community. It inflicted new wounds which will, perhaps, never heal.
In a press conference, Rajiv Gandhi excelled himself, when he said, the Sikhs would be the worst losers in an inquiry into the massacre.
These are pointers enough to the fact that Mr. Gandhi was the master-mind behind the anti-Sikh conspiracy. But he was not alone. He had his henchmen, including, H K L Bhagat, Jagdish Tytler, Bhajan Lal (the chief minister of Haryana) and Arun Nehru. It was under Bhajan Lal’s supervision that men and weapons were transported from the villages to the city and from the state to Delhi for the anti-Sikh violence.
Look at what the organisers of this massacre did to Sikhs in the police force of Delhi. Sikhs were disarmed and asked to hide like rat either in their homes or their offices while the rest of the police force was asked to take control of the situation. No force should be used, however, they were told.
Of course, like professional criminals, the organisers gave no orders in writing. For ones, the entire state machinery worked on spoken orders and directions. What a superb display of efficiency in a country whose red tape is a national bane!
After they had their fill, the ruling party vultures went around boasting about how they had countered the threat to national unity. But for the Congress, the events in the aftermath of Mrs. Gandhi’s assassination would have broken the country, croaked many of them.
Many Hindus were harmed, physically and materially, because they had dared to be human and had helped the Sikhs in that tragic hour. Many Sikhs owe their lives to the courage and humanity shown by their Hindu friends and neighbours. I Kalyanpuri, many Sikh families were saved by their Hindu friends and neighbours. In Khichripur, people from the neighbourhood of Sikh houses succeeded in chasing away the mob. Many children of Sikhs were given shelter by their Hindu neighbours. The stories of their courage and humanity all merit special attention. Even in Trilokpuri, the worst-affected by the violence, 70 percent of those rescued when the army came to their help, had been hiding in the houses of their Hindu friends and neighbours. This information came from a Sikh army officer. Not to forget what the Delhi University and JNU teachers did to counter the anti-Sikh violence. They formed all-night vigil squads from among the neighbourhood to keep away the violent mobs in their area.
A total of one lakh Sikhs had to take shelter in 30 relief camps in the post violence period and thousands are still waiting to be rehabilitated, fourteen years and five governments later.
Five thousand Sikhs perished in the violence although the official figures do not admit to more than 2733 killings. That is because the government does not recognise the missing Sikhs as dead. Notice the attention to detail! This was the kind of attention given to plotting and executing crimes as well.