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Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

Discussion in 'Sikh Sikhi Sikhism' started by prabhsmart, Mar 31, 2009.

  1. prabhsmart

    prabhsmart
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    Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs - Part 1[​IMG]
    By Sebastian Melmoth
    When George W. Bush announced the end of military operations in Iraq many hailed the miraculous and speedy destruction of Saddam’s army as an opportunity for immediate peace and prosperity. Now, in retrospect, the fan fare rings hollow and the “victory accomplished” banner reads woeful naivety. In the academic community there were those who warned of the possibility of insurgency but such concerns were disparaged or simply ignored. As the Government of Sri Lanka is poised to militarily destroy the LTTE there remains the possibility of continued insurgent terrorism, a word synonymous with the LTTE. Such concerns have been suggested by Howard Debenham, former Australian high commissioner to Sri Lanka. Clearly conflict dynamics make Iraq and Sri Lanka distinctly different, to compare them would be a worthless exercise, however, similar academic fears of a resurgence of violence should be neglected.
    This final, of a series of three articles, will track the evolution of the counter insurgency operation conducted by India against extremist Sikh militants. Again, the article will follow the frame work of liddism: the conflict is viewed as a boiling po; no matter how much pressure is applied to the lid, the water inside continues to boil; eventually steam will escape, perhaps scalding the hand on the lid; the heat, boiling the water, is the political grievances, the root cause of the conflict; any additional suffering endured by the affected population only adds fuel to the fire. The conflict in Punjab offers an example of the paramount importance of winning hearts and minds in order to take away the political motivations, the heat, and create sustainable peace.
    Although Sikhs are a minority within India, 80% of the entire Sikh population live in Punjab, contributing two thirds of the states total. After partition the Sikhs were not recognised as an official minority, and as such were not afforded minority rights. By the 1960s Punjab was the only region in India not organised on linguistic lines. In light of this the Akali Dal, the major Sikh party, stepped up pressure for a linguistic reorganization of Punjab. Originally the movement was peaceful and used non-violent tactics of agitation based on the model developed by Gandhi. Although a compromise was reached in 1966, a series of socio-economic problems polarised the Sikh population. Capitalising on this sense of alienation and disenfranchisement an enigmatic leader, Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, gained increasing support for his calls for an independent Sikh state based on strict Sikh fundamentalism.
    In the face of violent clashes between Bhindranwale’s supporters and Hindu and moderate Sikh groups the Indian government ordered collective punishments against the entire Sikh population. When the Indian state stopped all Sikhs from travelling to New Delhi for the Asian Games in 1982, a turning point was reached and popular sympathies began to shift towards militancy. In 1984, the government took decisive action when Bhindranwale established a military strong hold in the Golden Temple. Operation Blue Star was a military victory but a political catastrophe. Although Bhindranwale was killed and his base destroyed, the attack was launched on a day when Sikhs from across the world congregate at the Golden Temple and hundreds of Sikh civilians were killed. Ultimately, Operation Blue Star caused a severe escalation of the conflict and the justification given for the assassination of Indira Gandhi by two Sikh bodyguards. In the wake of Blue Star an attempt to broker peace concluded with the Longowal agreement between the Indian government and Sikh moderates. However, the negotiations did not involve the militants who were supported by the civilian population. The Sikh moderate leader, Harchand Singh Longowal, was assassinated by Sikh militants and the Indian government failed to implement the promised reforms. Violence continued and Punjab was placed under direct Presidential rule. In 1987, the Indian government again attempted to regain control of Punjab through military action with Operation Black Thunder, a second attempt to retake the Golden Temple from Sikh militants. Though less destructive, Black Thunder followed the same failings of Blue Star; the intervention was a politically counter productive and was not supported by a wider counter-insurgency campaign. The Indian government only managed to truly turn the tide against the militants when it recognised the importance of the Sikh population as part of the solution, as opposed to part of the problem. A two part campaign was developed where by the militants were targeted through grass roots counter insurgency, and political engagement and dialogue was increased to address grievances of the wider Sikh population. The weakening of the militant movement, militarily and politically, resulted in a fracturing of the struggle into multiple splinter groups. The insurgents began fighting more amongst themselves than against the Indian security forces. Individual separatist groups attempted to increase their stake hold in the conflict by recruitment drives that brought in new but ideologically unprepared cadres. The movements became undisciplined, and “criminalized”, increasingly engaged in robbery, extortion, rape, indiscriminate killings and ever-escalating terrorist attacks on innocent civilians, ultimately turning Sikh society against the separatist movement as a whole.


    The path to direct link is
    Sri Lanka Breaking News-Daily Mirror Online
     
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  3. prabhsmart

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    The last part is it true oor another hindu's anti-sikh proganda.
     
  4. dalbirk

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    Prabhsmart Ji ,
    It is always the Congress , fighting on both sides of the fence . Running with the hare & hunting with the hounds . The only casuality is innocent onlookers ( Sikhs ) .
     
  5. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Master Tara Singh Ji once told the Sikhs....the Congress and the Jan sangh (bjp) are two sides of teh same coin...and it was proven in 1984..Congress shelled Darbar sahib..and the BJP distributed ladoos and asked..Why wasnt this done much sooner ??
    The Sikhs end up the real losers everytime...no matter who rules Delhi..Mughals..British..Congress..Janta Dal..BJP..whosoever wins next....
     
  6. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    I don't think that BJP and congress are two sides of a coin.In 1947 almost ethinically cleansed hindu's and sikhs from west pakistan while here it was congress that not only allowed them to stay but also gave them personal law while Orthodox Hindu's wanted to throw all muslims out of India.

    As far as sikhs are concerned From 1996 regional parties are king maker in India.Many of them threatened center to fulfill their demands.On the other hand No such thing was done by akali's.
     
  7. Archived_member7

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    The BJP..THE RSS ..were rescuing Sikhs during the 84 riots ..it is entirely wrong and even absurd to say they were distributing laddoos ..i have spoken to some witnesses and also read Khushwant Singh's articles ...

    here is one example :

    During the riots, the Hindu right wing parties protected Sikhs. Khushwant Singh expressed his gratitude to the Hindus when saying:“It was the Congress leaders who instigated mobs in 1984 and got more than 3000 people killed. I must give due credit to RSS and the BJP for showing courage and protecting helpless Sikhs during those difficult days. BJP party leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee himself intervened at a couple of places to help poor taxi drivers.” The Bharatiya Janata Party strongly condemned the riots.

    The congress is so cunning ..their instigation of the riots actively is well known and no secret ...what they did was ..whipping the dead horse ....they cleverly put the blame on the RSS ...the panthic morchas were their stooges ..so thats how they spread such stories ...
     
  8. prabhsmart

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    Guys u know what, ur Guru's and the singhs and kaurs of khalsa panth who have giving there life for the protection of humanity and human rights, have "earned so much - Naam" that even if anyone all the community in the world stand against sikhs they will not be able to accomplish any thing.

    But we must preapre ur self and ur childrens to be one of those, then and only then ur pot of good will be always full.

    Jews suffered for 'n' number of years before getting there home land, hope fully ur childrens see a rising sun for them.
     
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  9. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    The Akalis could be the Kingmakers too..but the Badals have sold out completely to RSS/BJP. Once you are that close (nail/and flesh) then the opposite side got nothing to say..but IF you stay NEUTRAL..BOTH sides will woo you....with offers and counter offers.. Badals have struck a family deal and sold the Panth/sikhs.

    2. It is a fallacy..in actual FACT......just THREE STATES in the Hindi belt CONTROL India....the rest of the 32 States have no power at all. Whoever controls these 3..will have Majority of the parliament seats..will also chose the PM and Central Govt. BJP and Congress are not so "All India party" anymore...Bihar is under Lalauu...UP under Samjwadis...etc.. The SOUTH have a entirely separate set up of their own...Gujerat Maharashtra want gujerati and marathi over everyone else...

    India should DITCH the British system and adopt the USA system....Stronger STATES..All India wide Presidential electtion directly by the people....Governors elected by the states...and a Centre purely administrative/defence/currency etc. British westminister type is a FAILURE.
     
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  10. S|kH

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    On a historical note, the last part is very true. The public has turned its back to separatist movements.
     
  11. Tejwant Singh

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    Gyani ji writes:

    Gyani ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    I discussed this very same idea in the UK 35 years ago among Indians of all religions and walks of life. We used to gather at someone's house once a month to discuss how to improve harmony, interaction and understanding among all the amalgm of languages and cultrues in India. The gathering had Indians from all different parts of India.

    It was pointed out by me in one of these gatherings which had its booze moments that a Punjabi Hindu will not marry a Southern Hindu because of the cultural differences which was agreed by almost all.

    Then the idea was put forward that if India became a Federal System like the USA, then it would progress economically faster and the freedom of each state would make the dwellers prosper and then inter state business would improve etc etc. In this way India has a whole would develop at much fater pace.The members of UP state got so angry at me among with many others from poor states. They claimed that the only state that would benefit the most with my suggested idea would be Punjab because of the nature of the hardwroking Sikhs and that was not fair to the whole country.

    Your mentioning the idea brought all kinds of flashbacks.

    Eventually, India has to follow that path of federalism. If it does not then same thing will happen in India what happened in Yugoslavia and i has started t happen in a low level.


    Tejwant Singh
     
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  12. spnadmin

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    VaheguruSeekr ji

    It took me a lot of ready and almost a year before I figured out the Indian system of government with its version of state versus federal. It practically is the US system already. To change completely over would not be that big of a shift. The only one thing that India would probably want to keep is there are more than 2 parties. Coalition governments would not be possible using the US system. But at one time in US history there were many smaller parties, no coalitions however, and there is a drawback to that. By majority rule, and 3 to 4 political parties, you can end up with a government elected by less than 30 percent of the electorate. I don't know if India would want to abandon the coalition government possibility.
     
  13. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    Antonia ji

    The survival of India itself is like a miracle.India has so many culture's ,languages,religions
    that there co existance is nothing short of miracle.But the sad thing is that regionalism
    is increasing day by day.The states like Gujarat,Maharashtra are becoming developed while states like bengal,bihar ,Uttar pradesh are extremely backward as a result migration is happening which is changing demography.Hardly anyone can predict whiat is the future of India
     
  14. spnadmin

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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    "It took me a lot of ready".. Apologies kds ji -- I meant, It took me a lot of reading.. not ready.
     
  15. spnadmin

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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    kds ji

    No one can predict the future, period... What do you think of the fact that coalition government is not possible in the US? Would this work or not work in India?:unsure:
     
  16. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    Coalition poltics is now the reality of India.From past 13 years we have coalition Governments.The regional parties are so strong in some regions of India that there is no chance for national parties in that region.so Indians don't have any option
     
  17. spnadmin

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    Re: Fuelling the Fire: How India won the hearts and minds of Punjab’s Sikhs

    kds ji

    The coalition politics is a very important part of the dynamic in many countries. When there are extremely diverse regions as you pointed out earlier, and when there are many different political parties with loyal followers, coalitions are unavoidable and serve a purpose. You see this in countries like Italy; not in countries like France. There are cultural reasons. And as you say -- when coalitions have been in place historically, they become part of the political tradition and reality. It is hard to change it because the populace sees coalitions as a legitimate way to field change.
     
  18. ranghi29

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    dude the RSS is grouping trying to reshape Sikh history by making false books...here is example... " After the death of Guru Gobind Singh's 4 Sons he came to Banda Baargi(Banda Singh), when the Guru came to Baargi he fell to his feet at once and asked for his help againt the mugal empire. Then Banda Barragi decided to help him, so he got a Fauj(army) of Hindus together and went to take the revenge of the Guru.." i am not sure what book this is from but u can go to Youtube and type in "Tabai Ros Jagaio"... the 1st thing thats wrong in here is that Banda Singh's name was Banda Singh Bhadur not Banda Baargi!!!!
     
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  19. spnadmin

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    ranghi29 ji

    It sounds horrible and there is little YouTube will do to straighten things out. They refuse to be responsible for this kind of dishonorable and dishonest material. I share your irritation, outrage, disgust.
     
  20. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Tejwant Ji,

    Imho..the wording in bold in your mail is the crux of the problem. This is the reason behind all the "anti-Punjab/Sikh " actions of the Centre since 1947.
    As they say..Teri ik akh kadhan de layee merian dovehn akhan nikal jaan vee koi nahin...Meaning..I Dont mind losing BOTH EYES..just so that I can make YOU lose one eye...UP Controls the Centre from Day 1..1947 and this is the mentality that worked behind the denial of Punjabi Suba, denial of Waters, Industry, etc etc to Punjab even when its natural Law and rightfully Punjab's. No Centre approved projects for Punajb..excuse..its a BORDER State...no IT Projects..nothing... Although Punjabis send home substantial exchequer...most of the Banks deposits are used outside Punjab...the list goes on..
    BUT time and tide waits for no man..or country either..Slowly but surely India will have to change and implement the Anandpur Sahib Resolution...for more power to the States..its being overtaken by Global Economic events.
     
  21. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Tabeh Ros Jagio is a Heavily documented Resource of all this type of RSS malicous propoganda against the Sikh religion/Gurus/SGGS/History/Punjab. Its available on a DVD with proof in the form of photos/articles/quotes from History books used in India etc.
    You Tube is just a"medium"..and anyone can make use of it - so in this case SIKHS should make use of You tube to COUNTER such propoganda.
    Unfortunately for Sikhs..the RSS has successfully infiltrated all the Major Sikh Institutions..SGPC/Akali Dal badal/The Takhat Jathedars/Gyanis/Raagis etc are all publicly on the RSS payroll....as has been proven by Jathedar Puran Singh issuing a Hukmanam out of the Akal takhat premises - in Pune !!, claims by RSS that the Jathedars are in our payroll ( and not denied ) the RSS interfering in the Patna Takhat management. This long term plan has been in effect since 1947..proliferation of Deras, anti-Sikh "Gurus" who have offical support, Dera Radha Soami has been allotted THOUSANDS of acres land (consolidated) in Chandigarh..while Gurdwaras are told to wait..no land avilable...etc etc....raising...and keep stoking.... of issues like dasm granth..divide and rule among sikhs.
    A New Peoples Movement like the SINGH SABHA LEHR is the only way out of this mess..slowly and surely one is taking shape...but the going is steeply uphill and against great odds. Hearts and Minds are won through Honesty and Integrity- fairness to all citizens.:happy:
     
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