India’s Anti-Sikh Pogrom: Who Are the Guilty?

Written by Shamsul Islam | Published on: October 15, 2015
the sudden eruption of hysteria, loot and atrocities of misdirected people. We ourselves saw how selfish elements who were well acquainted with this incident, deliberately declared a murderer to be a member of the RSS and also spread the rumour that the RSS people were celebrating throughout the country death of Mahatma Gandhi, and thus they succeeded in diverting the love and the feeling of loss and hurt in the hearts of people for Gandhi. Such feelings were spread against Swayamsewaks and their families, particularly in Mahrashtra.
 
Having gone through such experiences myself, I can understand the strong reaction and feeling of innocent Sikh brothers who became of victims of sudden eruption of people’s violent hysteria. In fact, I would like to condemn in strongest words the inhuman barbarity and cruelty on Sikh brothers in Delhi and elsewhere. I feel proud of all those Hindu neighbours who protected lives and property of troubled Sikh brothers without caring for their lives. Such things one being heard from all over Delhi. These things have practically increased the faith in natural goodness of human behavior and particularly faith in Hindu nature.

RSS: No immediate and natural condemnation of this despicable statement by an important leader came from responsible Sikh leaders, intellectuals or organization. Therefore the already angered common and unimaginative people took it as correct that the Sikhs celebrated the death of Indira Gandhi. Because of this belief, selfish elements could succeed in making the common people become violent against the hapless Sikhs
 
I am also worried at the Sikh reaction in such delicate and explosive situation. As an activist engaged in national reconstruction and unity for half a century and being a well-wisher of Sikh community I am hesitating in saying that if reactive armed action by Sikhs is even partly true then they have not been able to evaluate the situation correctly and comprehensively and as a result could not respond according to the situation. Here I wish to draw the attention of all my countrymen including Sikhs that in a similar difficult situation arising out of murder of Mahatma Gandhi when in the hysteria against the RSS crimes of destruction of property, heinous burning alive of children, inhuman cruelty etc. were being committed and the news was reaching Nagpur from all over India, then the „dictator‟ of the RSS known as the so-called big private army, the then head of the Sangh late M.S. Golwalkar issued an appeal in Nagpur on February 1, 1948 to the lakhs of armed young followers throughout the country in the following unforgettable words:
 
“I direct all my Swayamsewak brothers that despite spread of provocation due to lack of understanding, they should adopt cordial attitude towards all and remember that this mutual distrust and improper hysteria is the result of the love and respect that the whole country has for Mahatma who made the country great in the eyes of the world. We salute such great respected departed soul‟.
 
These were not empty words to hide cowardice and helplessness in the hopeless situation. In those life threatening serious moments he proved that every word of his appeal had a meaning. On the evening of February 1, hundreds of Swayamsewaks in Nagpur urged for armed resistance and resisting till the last drop of their blood to stop the probable attack on their leader the same night. And some associates of Guruji told him of a conspiracy against his life and requested to shift his residence to a safe place before the attack, Guruji told them in such a black moment also that if the same people whom he had truly and with full ability, served throughout his life wanted to take his life, then why and for whom he should save his life. Thereafter he cautioned them in stern voice that even if a drop of blood of his countrymen was shed in saving him, then such a life would be useless for him. History is a witness that lakhs of Swayamsewaks spread throughout the country followed this directive word by word. Though they had to digest vulgarities in exchange of their patience and tolerance but there was a