Australian Officials with Sikh Representatives
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - Warren Enstch, the Chief Opposition Whip for the Liberal Party tabled the 1984 Sikh “Genocide Petition” before the “House of Representatives”. Hundreds of Sikhs who thronged the Capital city Canberra to participate in this historic moment were present in the Parliament Galleries while Hon. Enstch read the petition among thundering applause.
Presenting the “Genocide” Hon. Entsch stated “it is important to note that today, 1st November, is 28 years to the day that these attacks took place. And as long as they continue to be referred to as ‘anti-Sikh riots’ there can be no closure for the Sikh community. Discussions around mass violence and genocide will always be controversial but the continued denial of such historical injustices can only encourage modern day crimes against humanity.”
The petition urged the Australian Parliament to recognize that an organized campaign of horrific violence took place against the Sikh community in November 1984, and that these killings were “Genocide” as per the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.
Representatives from Sikh Organizations supporting the Genocide Petition
Based on the gravity, scale and specially the organized nature of the attacks on Sikhs during November 1984 and discovery of new evidence containing mass graves, ruined villages, burnt Gurudwaras (Sikh Temples) and other traces of Sikh population annihilated during November 1984, the petition to the Australian Parliament argues that the “the intentional and deliberate nature of the attacks on Sikh lives, properties and places of worship during November 1984 makes them crime of “Genocide” as per Article 2 of the U.N. Convention on Genocide”.
“Sikhs For Justice” (SFJ), an international human rights group that is lobbying to get the violence of November 1984 against Sikhs recognized as “Genocide” supported the tabling of the petition in the parliament of Australia. According to Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, a human rights lawyer and legal advisor (SFJ), since the “Genocide” petition has been tabled by Hon. Entsch, now SFJ will provide documents, witnesses and evidence related to November 1984 Sikh Genocide to the Australian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who is responsible to respond on behalf of the Government of Australia.
According to Harkirat Singh, General Secretary, Supreme Sikh Council of Australia, “The Genocide Petition before Australian Parliament will highlight the systematic killing of Sikhs that took place in India and how the successive Governments in India covered these horrific events as “Anti-Sikh Riots”. The Sikh community will lobby with Federal member parliament of Labor and Liberals parties to follow a bi-partisan approach and help the victims of November 1984 violence and recognize those horrific acts as “Genocide”.
The “Genocide” petition got the support from Labor Party Member Parliament Hon Michelle Rowland who also demanded prosecution of those who are involved in the torture, extrajudicial killings and disappearances of Sikhs during counter insurgency operations in the State of Punjab.
View more information regarding 1984 genocide and petition