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Anger, Crescendo of Protests Rises in India, US

September 14, 2009 | By

Sikhs Protesting at US against arrest of Bhai Daljeet Singh

Sikhs Protesting at US against arrest of Bhai Daljeet Singh

Were it not so tragic, it would have been ridiculous, even laughable.

* Punjab’s top cop, the Director General of Police has publicly said there was no possibility of revival of militancy in the state and the police perceived no such threat.

* Punjab’s Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal and Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal told crowds of thousands gathered at Chappar Mela in Mandi Ahmedgarh on September 4 that there is “not even a remote chance of revival of militancy.”

* Courts in Punjab continue to extend police remands of some arrested people simply because police is claiming there were major conspiracies on to commit terrorist activities in the state.

* An obliging media in Punjab is so eager to report, based on unnamed sources and “leaks” from security agencies that X had met Y in Pakistan or such and such distributed stickers of Sant Bhindranwale.

Why, in the name of God, has the official establishment in India taken leave of all its senses, democratic pretenses and the last fig leaf of protections available to citizens under its Constitution is something perplexing the Sikh community.

The crescendo of protests meanwhile is growing louder by the day, not just in India but also in the United States. Sant Baljit Singh Daduwal led a massive protest from Takht Damdama Sahib to Bathinda and police had to block all highways to stop them, but when Daduwal dug his heels in, the march was allowed to proceed. On the outskirts of Bathinda, the Deputy Commissioner sent an ADC to receive a memorandum that demanded immediate release of Bhai Daljit Singh and others. Sant Daduwal was joined in by Darshan Singh Jagga Ram Tirath, Ek Noor Khalsa Fauj’s Baljinder Singh, Guru Granth Sahib Satikar Sabha’s Sukhwinder Singh, Kulbir Singh Barrapind and many others.

Dr. Amarjit Singh Addressing the Gathering

Dr. Amarjit Singh Addressing the Gathering

In the United States, the Sikh Youth of America (SYA) carried out protest marches in New York, Washington DC, Chicago, Houston and San Francisco in front of the Indian consulates and demanded immediate release of the leaders of Akali Dal (Panch Pardhani). News of protests was received from several other countries around the globe.

The SYA speakers said the Indian government was surreptitiously backing the Noormehlias and the rape-and-murder accused Dera Sirsa sadh Gurmeet Ram. Just because Bhai Bittu was fighting against such elements and was aggressively fighting the dera culture eating into the Sikh innards, he was being targetted by the Brahamanical establishment.

Bhai Bittu remanded till Sep 10

Even as the struggle for the release of Bhai Daljit Singh Bittu continues, a Ludhiana court extended the police remand by four more days for Bhai Bittu, Jaspal Singh Manjhpur, Palwinder Singh and Gurdip Singh Raju. Bhai Harpal Singh Cheema and scores of supporters crowded around the courts when Bhai Bittu and his associates were produced.

As the prosecution argued that Bhai Bittu had bene receiving money from abroad, the defence squelched that line of argumentation by saying that Bhai Bittu has not received a penny from any dubious source and he has close relatives, a good 26 of them, living in western countries who can and do send him money from their savings. Bhai Bittu is to be produced in court next on September 10.

In San Francisco, the SYA activists carried placards that proclaimed slogans like “Release Bhai Daljit Singh”, Give Justice to Sikhs inIndia”, “Stop Implicating Sikhs in False Cases”, “Free All Innocent Sikh Detainees” and “Stop Arrests of Sikhs under Fake Sedition Act”. Passers by were reading the slogans with interest and inquired about what was happening in a country that claimed itself to be the biggest democracy.

Some activists were carrying slogan placards that said “Badal Govt of Punjab is Stooge of Indian Intelligence Agencies” and “Akalis Are Puppets of Indian Govt”.

Typical of the behavior of the employees of the Indian consulate, they locked the doors and climbed atop the building with movie cameras and started filming the protests. In the past, such records have been used to harass those who later visit the consulate for any visa related work.

protest speaker 2Bhai Jaswinder Singh Jandi addressed the protesters and said it was a matter of concern that the government was working under the RSS thought process and was targeting the Sikh youth leadership.

Dr Amarjit Singh also castigated the Indian authorities and expressed full solidarity with the arrested leaders. He said the police officers in Punjab were peeved because Sikh youth sported T-shirts with the image of Sant Bhindranwale.

Vice president of San Jose gurdwara, Bhai Jaswant Singh Hothi, said the government was deliberately trying to create a situation like the one obtaining in 1984. He said it was incumbent upon the government of Punjab to release Bhai Bittu and stem the tide of anger and rage.

Senior panthic leader Bhai Bachittar Singh said there was no other country in the world where youth could be thrown in jails for 25 years without bringing them to trial. He said the Badals were afraid of the increasing popularity and image of Bhai Bittu.

American Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee’s coordinator Pritpal Singh also demanded release of Bhai Bittu while Stockton Gurdwara’s secretary Bhai Jaswinder Singh said it was sad that those who made 93 per cent sacrifices for India are facing genocidal attacks and fighting against the dera culture meant to finish them through assimilation.

Bhai Gurjant Singh and Bhai Balwinder Pal Singh Khalsa said in the name of democracy, there is a brahman dictatorship on in India. He said India has Demoncracy, not democracy. All the speakers condemned the attack on the magazine Sikh Shahadat.

Courtsy: WSN Bureau

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