“The 1984 [anti-Sikh] riots were wrong”/Widow Colony


Recently, during a news conference in Amritsar, Rahul Gandhi reportedly condemned the widespread violence which followed his grandmother’s assassination by her bodyguards Satwant Singh and Beant Singh.

The 1984 riots were wrong, and I strongly condemn the carnage…

The comment came in response to a question about Operation Bluestar (SikhiWiki, Sikhipedia, Wikipedia),

What is interesting to me about the reporting is that the media recounting the incident has attached some great significance to the condemnation – as if it means something to the Sikh people that a member of the Gandhi family has openly denounced riots that were obviously wrong and are the cause of so much pain in the Sikh community.

I don’t know that it does. The bottom line is that Rahul Gandhi (son of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and current Congress Party President Sonia Gandhi) – like his parents, grandmother, great-grandfather, and great-great-grandfather – is a politician and I simply cannot attach much special significance to what he said. As a Sikh I don’t blame Rahul Gandhi for what happened, but I also do not excuse the fact that his father dismissed the riots with comments like “when a big tree falls, the Earth shakes” and that the Indian government has yet to put to justice those who openly instigated and condoned the massacre.

FYI, Rahul went on to explain that neither he nor his family had ill-will towards the Sikh community. Er. Thanks?…I’m sure you sense my sarcasm. So, contrary to what the Indian media may think, Rahul’s comments mean little to me.

Anyhow, I’d like to take this opportunity to promote some media that does mean something to me: The Widow Colony.

For our readers who are not familiar with the film, in short, it is a documentary that presents the stories of a group of Sikh women who lost husbands, sons, and brothers during the anti-Sikh riots of 1984. The film has won numerousaccoladesand if you have not yet seen it, I highly recommend that you do. And if you are in Northern California – you can see it TOMORROW evening at UC Berkeley.

  • What: The Widow Colony
  • Where: 2050 VLSB, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94704
  • When: 7:00 pm on Thursday, November 20, 2008

For more info you can email [email protected] or call 909-802-8892.

[Event poster after the break]


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19 Responses to ““The 1984 [anti-Sikh] riots were wrong”/Widow Colony”

  1. blue singh says:

    Correction: Pogroms or Massacre, not riots.

  2. blue singh says:

    Correction: Pogroms or Massacre, not riots.

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