India, Britain mark colonial massacre centenary

Leroy Wright
April 13, 2019

Congress President Rahul Gandhi paid homage to the martyrs at the memorial this morning.

"A 100 years ago today, our beloved freedom fighters were martyred at Jallianwala Bagh".

Earlier today, President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi also paid tributes on Twitter to those who lost their lives in the massacre. We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused.

On Wednesday, May reiterated the United Kingdom government's long-standing expression of "deep regret" over the April 1919 Jallianwala Bagh massacre, calling it a "shameful scar" on British Indian history.

In the visitor's book, Rahul wrote that the cost of freedom must never be forgotten.

"There are events in the histories of nations which are hard to forget and they hold a very emotionally charged space in a nation's memory", Navtej Sarna, a Sikh who has served as India's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, told Reuters. The massacre took place in the walled enclosure of Jallianwala Bagh, which is still pocked with bullet marks. A horrific massacre, a stain on civilisation, that day of sacrifice can never be forgotten by India.

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'You might want to re-write history, as the Queen said, but you can't, ' said Dominic Asquith, Britain's high commissioner to India.

British High Commissioner to India Dominic Asquith, who also visited the Jallianwala Bagh memorial in Amritsar wrote in the visitor's book that the events of Jallianwala Bagh reflect a shameful act in British-Indian history.

Hundreds of people holding candles and the national flag marched through the northern Indian city of Amritsar on Friday, on the eve of the centenary of the colonial-era Jallianwala Bagh massacre that British Prime Minister Theresa May has called a "shameful scar".

But the British Government has never offered a formal apology for this most heinous of acts. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Brahma Mohindra brought this proposal which was a voice note under the leadership of Amarinder Singh. "The nation remains indebted to them", he tweeted.

According to Kirron, "Jallianwala Bagh centenary is a reminder that even the worst of massacres couldn't dampen the spirit of our countrymen".

On April 13, 1919, some 50 British Indian army soldiers began shooting at unarmed civilians who were taking part in a peaceful protest against oppressive laws enforced in the Punjab region. I want children across the United Kingdom to benefit from learning about the Jallianwala Bagh massacre to know what their country did in the name of empire.

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