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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Chandigarh, January 18:

Close on the heels of a Canadian MP of Indian origin, Sukh Dhaliwal appealing to the Indian government to recognize the anti-Sikh massacres of 1984 as `genocide’, Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) a US based human rights advocacy group has decided to seek a debate in the Canadian parliament challenging the government’s response.

The Canadian government had recently refused to adopt a petition filed by Sukh Dhaliwal and signed by a few thousand Canadians of Indian origin in June 2010, asking the Canadian government to recognize the anti-Sikh riots as `genocide’.

Reportedly, the Canadian government refused to accept the petition on grounds that it had “no evidence” of the riots being genocide in India, which happens to have a vibrant democracy.

US based attorney Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, legal adviser to SFJ said that a `motion to debate issue of Sikh genocide’ will be filed in the Canadian Parliament through which a debate would be conducted in the House to challenge the government’s response to the petition.

Pannun said, “since Canadian government’s response to the Sikh Genocide Petition is plethora of legal and factual errors, Sikh community is going to challenge this response in the Parliament by filing a “Motion to Debate Issue of Sikh Genocide” through which SFJ will present to the House evidence, documents, and witnesses, to substantiate the claim that massacre of Sikhs in November 1984 was an act of “Genocide” as defined under Article 2 of the UN Convention on Genocide.”

He also claimed that the Canadian government’s response to the petition was“ is in breach of its obligations under the UN Convention on Genocide, Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes Act of Canada, all of which require Canada to recognize the killings like that of November 1984 as “genocide” and to take all necessary actions to prevent and prosecute the crime of genocide”.

Taking a strict posture on the government’s response, Pannun alleged that, “it proves that Canada has traded its obligation with regard to Sikh human rights with the economic benefits from India.”

Jatinder Singh Grewal, Coordinator SFJ, said , “such attitude and behavior of the Government on an issue of human rights is not only discouraging for victims of November 1984 but is also contemptuous to the brave Canadian men and women who are serving in Afghanistan to promote the Canadian legacy of human rights for all.”




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