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the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu.

Dilawar Singh’s mother honoured at Surrey Gurdwara Featured


The mother of Dilawar Singh, who assassinated former Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh, was honoured at Guru Nanak Singh Gurdwara on Sunday, September 8.

Surjit Kaur was presented with a robe of honour by members of the Gurdwara committee following special prayers in memory of Dilawar Singh, who killed Beant Singh in a suicide attack on August 31, 1995 at Chandigarh secretariat.


The assassination was in retaliation of state repression of Sikhs in Punjab under Beant Singh. The slain leader had given a free hand to the police to liquidate militants fighting for a separate Sikh homeland, through extra judicial means. This had resulted in gross misuse of police power and large scale human rights abuse in the name of "war on terror".


Dilawar Singh, who was a police officer, had joined the militant ranks to avenge the police excesses and turned into a human bomb to assassinate the Chief Minister. Every year, the supporters of Dilawar Singh commemorate his martyrdom day all over the world. 


Gurdwara President Hardeep Singh Nijjar, who is close to the family of Dilawar Singh, was instrumental in bringing Surjit Kaur for the event. Nijjar also spoke on the occasion and paid tributes to Dilawar Singh and other Sikh militants who had died at the hands of Indian police.


The committee also remembered human rights defender Jaswant Singh Khalra, who was abducted and killed by the Indian police on September 6, 1995. 


Khalra was among thousands of Sikhs who were kidnapped and murdered by the police and security forces in Punjab between the 1980s and 1990s. Most of these people remain untraced and presumed dead. There has been no accountability for senior police officers involved in illegal operations to deal with an armed insurgency by Sikh separatists.


Sikh men were frequently kidnapped, tortured, and killed with impunity in faked encounters, as perpetrators in uniforms were rewarded with out-of-turn promotions and gallantry awards. In almost all cases, the victims' bodies were disposed of unceremoniously.


Khalra’s only fault was that he started an investigation into the enforced disappearances. At the time, he was collecting records of those who were cremated secretly in Amritsar.



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