Operation Blue Star: The wound on Punjab’s chest, the story of which every person narrates differently

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Plagued by famine to the tyranny of musclemen, the youth of the poor section of Bihar were engulfed in the swamp of unemployment till the 1980s in such a way that they had no option but to go to other states for employment. Apart from Delhi-Mumbai, there was another state where these unemployed youth saw the hope of earning employment. This state was Punjab, but where did these youths, who came to Punjab from other states in search of bread for June 2, know that this state, known for its patriotism, vivacity and hard work farming, has suffered countless setbacks in a few years. is going to endure.

Roads of Punjab turned red again

This was the period when many innocent Sikhs either lost their lives or left all and somehow went abroad and then remained there. The hearts of the mothers of the young children kept beating loudly until the child who had gone to their studies returned home safely. Punjab cried during the first partition, after that it learned to smile again by applying its own ointment to its wounds. But, in no time, so much blood was shed here that the color of the roads turned red.

What was Operation Blue Star?

The time started from June 1, 1984, which is still considered as not the biggest black day in the history of Punjab after partition, but a dark period. On June 3, the Indian Army entered Amritsar and surrounded the Golden Temple. Curfew was imposed till evening. On June 4, the army started firing, so that the weapons and assets of the extremists could be estimated. By evening, Indira Gandhi ordered the army to enter the Golden Temple complex and launch Operation Blue Star. After which there was fierce bloodshed in the premises.

Military commander KS Brar admitted that there was a very sharp reply from the extremists too. The Akal Takht was completely destroyed. Bullets were also fired on the Golden Temple. For the first time in many centuries, there could not be recitation on 6th, 7th and 8th June. Sikh library burnt.

According to the Whitepaper of the Government of India, 83 soldiers were killed and 249 were injured in Operation Blue Star. According to this white paper, 493 extremists and civilians were killed, 86 were injured and 1592 were arrested, but there is still a dispute about all these figures. Sikh organizations say that the number of innocent people who died is in the thousands. However, the Government of India has been denying this. At the same time, the sentiments of the Sikh community were greatly hurt by this action.

Why was Blue Star executed?

jarnail singh bhindranwalaMagzter

Along with knowing about Operation Blue Star, it is also important to know the circumstances due to which these situations arose. Violence in Punjab started in 1978. At the same time the name of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, the head of the Sikh Dharma Prachar Sanstha, came in the discussion. Born in 1947, Janrail Singh Bhindranwale always lived in Sikh attire, briefs and loose kurtas. In the name of the weapon, he had a kirpan and an arrow of steel according to the Sikh tradition. The elderly Sikhs of Punjab, who had seen Bhindranwale with their own eyes, describe his costume in such a way that the manner of the conversation of this six-foot youth was very attractive. Wonderful sight. No one had the courage to question or answer back in front of him, there was something like this in awe. It is believed that there was such hypnosis in his address that his words used to go home in the hearts of the listeners.

The period of violence had already started

golden temple amritsarUNP

The story started from 1978. On Baisakhi (April 13), Bhindranwale’s supporters clashed with the Nirankaris. 13 supporters of Bhindranwale were killed. This incident suddenly brought Bhindranwale’s name in the headlines. The 31-year-old head of the Damdami Taksal, a Sikh educational institution, always had a fanatical outlook. He spoke effectively about Sikhism. At his behest, people stopped getting hair and beard cut. People started to stop smoking cigarettes.

After 1981, when violent activities started increasing in Punjab, allegations were made against Bhindranwale of promoting violent activities continuously. The police said that there is not enough evidence to take action against them. In April 1983, AS Atwal, Deputy Inspector General of Punjab Police, was shot dead in broad daylight in the Harmandir Sahib complex. Due to such incidents, the morale of the police continued to fall. After this the situation in Punjab went on deteriorating. Three months before Operation Blue Star in 1984, the death toll in violent incidents had risen to 298. By the way, the situation of Operation Blue Star had started building from June 1.

Many questions were raised on the operation

Blue StarUNP

Many prominent Sikh intellectuals raised questions as to why the situation was allowed to get so bad that such action was needed. Angry with this action of the government, many prominent Sikhs either resigned from their posts or returned the honors given by the government. After this, the rift between the Sikhs and the Congress party deepened when two Sikh security personnel assassinated the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, a few months later.

Later it was also believed that the military campaign against the people of the country was not right. A few years ago, in the Manmohan Singh government, Home Minister Chidambaram had offered military action to deal with the Naxalite problem. This was rejected by the then General VK Singh saying, ‘The army does not fight against its people. Have made a mistake once, will not happen now.

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Mirza Shehnaz
Mirza Shehnaz
Shehnaz Ali Siddiqui is a Corporate Communications Expert by profession and writer by Passion. She has experience of many years in the same. Her educational background in Mass communication has given her a broad base from which to approach many topics. She enjoys writing around Public relations, Corporate communications, travel, entrepreneurship, insurance, and finance among others.
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