Badal must provide details of visit to Golden Temple 2 days after Army attack in June, 1984

Jagtar Singh

Chandigarh, October 9: Every words the 5-time Punjab chief minister and Faqr-e-Qaum Panth Rattan Parkash Singh Badal utters publicly carries weight and can’t be doubted. Rather he should not be.

At the same time, he is supposed to substantiate his statements, especially when the same is a crucial revelation.

He has twice stated during the last fortnight that he visited the Golden Temple after Operation Bluestar, the army attack beginning June 4, 1984 that ended on June 6.

He made this revelation for the first time on September 26 while addressing meetings in Lambi area to mobilise people for his October 7 rally.

He is reported to have said, “It was blood all over. The sarovar where people take the holy dip had turned red with blood. I had seen that with my own eyes (Main taan us vele darshan vi keete jaa ke)”.(Punjabupdate.com, September 28, 2018).

He repeated it again at Patiala rally on October 7 saying he had visited the shrine two days after the army attack. He said, “Main do din baad hi othe gaya saan”. That date should be June 8 as the attack had ended on June 6.

President Zail Singh visited the complex on June 8.

Officiating Commission Jalandhar Division N S Rattan was ordered to proceed to Amritsar on the evening on June 7 and he left the next morning. That was two days after the attack ended. He was provided army escort. Despite that, his convoy was stopped on the Beas bridge that was under army control at that time. He was allowed to proceed after clearance from the higher authorities. He covered the 75-km distance with army escort in four hours.

No movement was being allowed across Beas from any highway. It may be mentioned that people from the villages had started marching towards Amritsar during that period.

 It is for this reason that he needs to provide details as to where he was during Operation Bluestar  and how he managed to reach the Golden Temple that was under army control and no civilian had been allowed to enter till then.

Badal was arrested in Chandigarh along with Surjit Singh Barnala on June 12. They held  joint press conference at Sector 9 residence on Badal and issued a statement. The newspapers did not carry the content due to censorship.

Here goes that statement:

“This is a voice of anguish  of the Sikh people who today stand mortally wounded, for the repository of their faith to uphold the principles of justice, equality and dignity of man and love of God, stands destroyed by the might of the Indian army. After nearly two centuries of Abdali’s invasion, Sri Akal Takht Sahib stands blasted. The Golden Temple complex of drenched with the blood of Sikh martyrs. Delhi once again has embarked upon a pogrom of systematic and well planned genocide of the Sikh people. The whole of Punjab is under the jack boots of the Indian army and no one can get on the road or even drive a bicycle in the whole state. Punjab is a prison house. Sikh nation is in chains.

“Today Sikhs all over the world are in deep anguish and mourning. Under the command of the President and the Prime Minister the fascist and chauvinist forces of Hindu communalism have been unleashed to stamp out religious, cultural and racial minorities. The army was marshaled to destroy and desecrate the holiest of the holy Sikh shrine Sri Hamrandir Sahib and Sri Akal Takht Sahib so as to break the will of the Sikhs and reduce them to perpetual slavery. All human liberties- personal, civil, religious and political were denied and Punjab was sealed from every conscientious witness. The fury with which the operation was launched has put to shame anything that happened to the people of East Pakistan in 1971 and Tamils in Sri Lanka.

“Thousands of Sikhs have been butchered. All gurdwaras in Punjab and Chandigarh have been desecrated and looted and thousands of Sikhs have been taken into army custody. There is no independent press coverage and all newspapers of Punjab and Chandigargh have been sealed. Judging in this background the glorious fight put up by Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and other Sikhs to defy the might of the Indian army when the attack was launched at the Golden temple complex and tread the most glorious path shown by Sri Guru Arjan Devji in June , 1606 which testifies the undaunting will of the Sikhs to make supreme sacrifice in the cause of religion human dignity, freedom of conscience and equality of man. This blatant and ruthless action of government is an act o vengeance as well because it were the Sikhs alone who had launched from the Golden Temple an agitation against Emergency in 1975. Who could ever think of resisting Hindu fascism  which stark the land today under the shattered mask of Congress secularism like German’s Nazism.

“As a proud and valiant people who have suffered and sacrificed in the Indian national cause, they are looking up to the dormant conscience of democratic forces in India to raise their voice and assert against the unholy designs of Mrs. Gandhi and her party to alienate the mind and soul of Sikhs.

“The government has virtually declared a war of the Sikhs. In this critical hour of their destiny the Sikhs declare their resolute determination  to fight to the last man.

“Shiromani Alkali Dal calls upon the Sikhs all over the world to observe June 17, 1984 as Ardas Divas (Prayer Day) . On that day bhog of Sru Guru Granth Sahib be performed and prayers should be held  for the martyrs  who laid down their lives while defending Sri Harmandir Sahib and Sri Akal Takht  Sahib. All Sikh men and women would wear black turbans and chunis on that day. Every Sikh should sleep on the floor on the 17th night. By that day Sikhs should return every medal or award received from government of India as has already been done by some respectable Sikhs. The President, Sikh ministers, MPs, MLAs, Sikhs holding nominative or elective positions in corporations, boards etc should resign  and show unity of mind and spirit with the martyrs and prepare themselves for the ensuing struggle.”

(The original press note is with this journalist)

Badal makes no mention of his visit to Golden Temple in this statement nor he had made any such claim at that press conference.

He should also clear one more fact.

The white paper released by the centre in July, 1984 lists secret meetings the Akali leaders had with the centre.

One such meeting is significant. It is dated March 28, 1984.

The venue was a guest house in New Delhi.

Present at this meeting were Badal, P V Narasimha Rao, CR Krishnaswamy Rao Sahib, P C Alexander and M M K Wali.

It is pertinent to mention that this round had started at Chandigarh on March 27 and continued till March 29 where senior party leaders were present. Badal alone was taken to Delhi for March 28 meeting.

Gurcharan Singh Tohra, who  was president of the SGPC for a record more than 25 years, had come on record on these meetings sharing details.

It is time for Faqr-e-Qaum Panth Rattan Badal to come out with the facts.

Editor-in-Chief

Jagtar Singh

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