Gurdaspur Terror Attack: Anti-Sikh Forces Find An Excuse
For Criticizing Sikh Struggle For Human Rights
By Surjit Singh Gopipur
29 July, 2015
Regardless of the reasons, the terror activities of Islamic militant organizations the like Islamic State (IS), Al Qaeda and others have caused great loss for genuine struggles being fought by slave nationalities across the world for basic human rights. In case of the Sikhs who are leading a peaceful struggle in Northern India, the deadly terror attack at the Dinanagar town of Gurdaspur district has deteriorated their present situation.
It is a well known fact that the movement for release of Sikh political prisoners who have completed their jail terms is on its peak these days in Punjab as a result of hunger strike by Bapu Surat Singh Khalsa. However, at the same time, a surprising and deadly terror attack has gravely shaken the state and terrorized its people. Media organizations have alleged that the terrorists behind the plot hailed from Pakistan and had affiliation with “Lashkar-e-Toiba”.
While the attack has caused grief across Punjab, it also hit Sikh struggle for human rights deeply. Although investigations are yet to take place, anti-Sikh forces have found the excuse to criticize the on-going peaceful struggle of the Sikh community.
Ever since the news about Gurdaspur shootings broke out, almost all Indian news channels conducted live debates while providing regular updates on the attack. On NDTV India, Congress’ MP from Ludhiana Ravneet Bittu, grandson of noted violator of human rights and former Punjab Chief Minister Beant “Singh”, was invited for a debate. While expressing his views, Bittu clearly associated the attack with the ongoing struggle initiated by Bapu Surat Singh Khalsa and opposed shifting of Prof. Davinderpal Singh Bhuller and Bhai Gurdeep Singh Khera terming them as deadly “terrorists”. He said that the attack is alarming for Punjab and releasing Sikh prisoners prematurely would be a big risk to the security.
The hosts of some TV channels were quoted as saying that Pakistan was not happy over the peace achieved in the state after long struggle fought by Indian security forces. They said the Pakistan wanted to push Punjab back to furnace of “terrorism”. While commenting, some TV anchors said that Pakistan’s “infamous” spy agency ISI is motivating Khalistan supporters for restoring militancy. Altogether, majority of TV anchors associated the attack with the current Sikh struggle which is entirely peaceful.
Indian security agencies have alleged that a Pakistan based militant body is behind the attack and militants wearing Indian army uniform crossed over to India from the Indo-Pak international border. However, a question arises that if pro-freedom Sikhs are playing in the hands of the ISI or other Pakistan based militant organizations, then why didn’t such organizations use local Sikh youth to materialize the attack? If claims by Indian security agencies were actually true, such an attack would have been easily orchestrated within India itself. Actually, it is entirely false propaganda against Sikhs by Indian agencies and the media that Sikhs are backed by Pakistan based organizations. Era of armed Sikh struggle has completed and now the era is of peaceful and democratic struggle.
The attack in Gurdaspur is condemnable as it took lives of as many as 3 civilians. But, the governments of both countries should keep in mind that they should not make Punjab a battlefield of their ongoing confrontation on the Kashmir issue. Punjab has fought armed struggle against Indian state for its fascist operations against minority communities. Punjabis, particularly Sikhs want relations between both countries to be normalized so such attacks do not occur on their homeland.
(Writer is Punjab based young journalist and working as chief of Punjab bureau of English news portal www.sikh24.com. He can be reached at e.mail ID: firstname.lastname@example.org)
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