|1846||Battle of Budowal between Sikhs and British.|
|1989||Sirdar Satwant Singh and Kehar Singh hanged for gunning down Indira Gandhi. As Prime Minister of India, she had ordered the June 1984 attack on Harimandir Sahib by the Indian Armed Forces. |
Sardar Satwant Singh and Sardar Kehar Singh were hanged till death. They were co-accused with Sardar Beant Singh for gunning down Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984. Sikh Panth holds Indira Gandhi, then Prime Minister of India, responsible for the dessicration of Harminder Sahib in 1984's Bluestar operation.
Lord Gifford, a forner judeg and member of Britain's House of Lords, was deeply shocked by the death sentence because the execution took place on highly ambiguous and speculative circumstances. Furthermore, a committee consisting of retired judges, several lawyers and writers of India were of the opinion that these executions will be a source of undying shame to India.
-Source Globe and Mail, 6th Jan. 1989.
==> BLUESTAR OPERATION is the code name for the June 1984 attack on Sri Harimandir Sahib, Amritsar, by the Indian Armed Forces. This attack was conducted under the pretext of flushing out terrorists but was designed for maximum damage. The attack took place on the day of Guru Arjan Dev Patshah's Shahadat Gurpurab observations. Further this operation was sanctioned under the direct orders of Indira Gandhi (then prime minister) and Zail Singh (then President). The Golden Temple Complex was attacked by the Indian Armed Forces using tanks, helicopters, and other heavy artillery, under the command of Major General Kuldip Singh Brar. Sri Akal Takhat was desecrated during this attack. Sri Darbar Sahib sustained at least 300 bullet holes. Thousands of innocent people were murdered in cold blood. Their fault? They were attending the Martyrdom day of Guru Arjan Dev Ji. The brave GurSikh soldiers in the Akal Takhat, numbering about 250, gave extremely tough resistance to the Indian army. However, their resistance was no match to the large number of tanks, helicopters, bombs, and other heavy artillery that destroyed the Akal Takhat. The whole Sikh nation rose as a whole to protest against this ghastly attack. Thousands of Sikhs were martyred in the holy precincts of Darbar Sahib. Many gave their lives in attempts to reach for Darbar Sahib's protection. All roads to Amritsar were blocked. Every Sikh approaching these blockades were asked to remove their kirpan and turban. Those refusing were immediately killed or arrested. Anyone with blue or saffron turbans were particularly targeted and killed. Those arrested were blind folded and their hands tied behind their backs with their own turbans. Arrested Sikhs were packed in groups of 60-70 in small rooms with liitle room for any mobility.
In protest, many respected Sikhs returned their Padam Bushan medals/honors bestowed upon them by the Indian government and sacrificed their high positions. Several Sikh Army personal deserted their posts in protest and marched straight to protect Darbar Sahib. However, Indira Ghandhi did receive retribution for her black deeds on Oct. 31st, that same year.
For detailed description of events surrounding this attack, readers are referred to the following: