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Congress was amply rewarded for 1984 Anti-Sikh Pogrom November 29, 2015

Posted by simarp in : India, Sikhism , add a comment

There is a lot of talk today about ‪#‎IndiaIsTolerant‬ & ‪#‎IntoleranceRising‬, two tweets or comments later I am reminded of 1984 and asked, “have you forgotten what Congress did to Sikhs?” The intent of the other person is to play then&now or some crazy game, but he/she touches an open wound and it is blood flowing all over again. I have an answer, once or twice I have managed courage to share it, most often I just say that you can’t even force my dead body to vote for Congress.

Here is my answer.
Yes it pains, what Congress engineered was horrendous and the fact that it has gone unpunished and in the process making a whole community of lions and princesses at times wonder, where the lions are? But the pain doesn’t end there, it just begins, the blood has just started flowing.

The worst for Sikhs and Secular India didn’t end on November 5th, a big hole in secular fabric of India emerged. Elections were announced and Congress mobilized huge rallies to share how “Sikh Guards” killed Indira Gandhi and worked to divide the society on religious grounds. Every evening on Government Controlled Door Darshan television, leader after leader, unabashedly talked about “Crime committed by Sikhs” and how “Sikhs were dully punished”.

Shame for India, they succeeded. Rajiv Gandhi’s “theory” that “when a giant tree falls….” was vindicated. Delhi, where the worst massacres happened, rewarded him with all 7 seats. Yes, rewarded, that is the word, that is the blood, that is the pain, that is the trauma. Haryana gave him all 10. Himachal all 4 and Uttar Pradesh 83 out of 85 seats.

Democracy did win that day, but it was at the cost of secularism, inclusiveness, and legitimacy of anti-Sikh pogrom. There was no rigging, the mood of the nation was that what happened to Sikhs was deserved by them and now we should move on. With 404/533 seats, Congress and Rajiv Gandhi had no reason to think about Sikhs, the “nation” was with them. That is the pain which lingers and even if a day comes when justice prevails, this pain still won’t ebb.

I ask myself, if it was why not then why now? Then who were all those people who gave Congress 404 seats. Who stamped Congress & Rajiv Gandhi’s Pogrom against Sikhs as legit? Blood oozes and pain lingers.

1984 Anti Sikh Pogrom (Riots) and Twitter November 1, 2009

Posted by simarprit in : Sikhism, Twitter , add a comment

Twitter is a medium which shows everyone naked, instinctive statements taught a lesson to a host of thought leaders on eating crow. Shashi Tharoor, Barkha Dutt, Vikram Chandra, Pritish Nandy, Rajdeep Sardesai were all stopped in their tracks and requested/asked/ pushed to clarify their statements and use of words. Some like Pritish Nandy were extremely quick in clarifying their views and stating their position where as others like Barkha Dutt,  Rajdeep Sardesai and Shashi Tharoor took a circuitous route to reach the same place. Shashi Tharoor was quickly reminded of his “Cattle Class” misadventure on Twitter and decided to go absolutely silent on this question after making one simple clarifying statement.

The clarification seekers came from all geographies and belonged to all communities, however Sikhs from India, US, UK, Australia and Canada outnumbered everyone else due to obvious reasons. Sikh, Sikhs, Riots, 84 and 1984 remained critical words in all tweets. Rough estimate of number of tweets pertaining to 1984 Anti Sikh Pogrom puts the number close to 100,000. One could see instinctive collaborations happening simultaneously in putting across point and countering thought leaders, in some cases to a great  pounding effect.

A random check of  profile and age group of those who were actively countering or correcting the “thought leaders” talks a lot about the even spread of community across diverse verticals and 1984 atrocities hurting all age groups. An 80-year-old tweeted about re-living the partition mayhem and a 21-year-old talked about his being brought up listening to first hand stories from elders who faced it all and survived to talk about it.

On Twitter the Sikh community emerged as a Virtual Nation and grieved as one.