"if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen
the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu.

Mewa Singh Day proclamation denied to Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall for hosting BJP leaders Featured


In protest against the hosting of right wing Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders at Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall, Jalandhar, Radical Desi declined to give them a copy of the Mewa Singh Day proclamation.

Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall was established by followers of the Ghadar movement, started in 1913 to fight against British occupation of India and racism abroad. Formed by Indian immigrants in North America, the Ghadar Party believed in an egalitarian and secular society and denounced religious sectarianism.

However, the officials of Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall recently allowed the leaders of the ruling BJP to hold a political event inside their premises. They did that in the past too, but had virtually got away by claiming oversight on part of the clerical staff.

The attacks on religious minorities have grown in India under the BJP government that aims to transform the country into Hindu theocracy. Yet, Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall whose officials claim to be leftists allowed this to happen.

Radical Desi, which was instrumental behind the Mewa Singh Day proclamation, decided in principle not to give a copy to Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall this time.

The Bhai Mewa Singh Day proclamation was made by the New Westminster City Council on January 13 on the application of Radical Desi. This was first time in history that a municipal government acknowledged the martyrdom day of Mewa Singh, who was executed on January 11, 1915 for assassinating a controversial immigration Inspector William Hopkinson. Mewa Singh was a part of the Ghadar movement.

Radical Desi was also instrumental behind another proclamation, made by the City of Burnaby in 2013 in commemoration of 100 years of Ghadar Party. A copy of that proclamation was presented to Mangat Ram Pasla, a Marxist leader associated with Desh Bhagat Yaadgaar Hall during his visit to Vancouver. Incidentally, Pasla was in BC recently, but Radical Desi decided not to give him the copy of Mewa Singh Day proclamation, and rather had it presented to Kamaljit Singh Thind of Mehak Punjab Dee TV on Sunday, February 23.

Thind has been raising awareness about the Ghadar movement on his own without much help from anyone. He was given the copy of proclamation by New Westminster City Councillors Chuck Puchmayr and Jamie McEvoy,  and MLA Rachna Singh during an event organized at Gurdwara Singh Sabha, Surrey by the Ghadar Memorial Society of Canada.


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Gurpreet Singh

Cofounder and Director of Radical Desi


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