Angry Sikhs condemn raid on holy shrine

Toronto Sun
June 8, 1984

About 300 angry Sikhs demonstrated outside the Indian Consulate yesterday protesting a raid on PunĀ­jab's holiest shrine and the death of a militant religious leader.

There was no violence and no arrests but rush hour traffic at Yonge and Bloor Sts. came to a halt at the noisy demonstration.

Carrying placards and wearing ceremonial daggers, the Sikhs shouted: "Death to Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi."

The demonstration was peaceful compared to the riots in New Delhi and Srinigar in northern Kashmir yesterday, which left at least nine dead and 140 injured in the second day of the latest disturbances.

Sikhs took to the streets after government troops stormed the Golden Temple in Amritsar on Wednesday and seized control of the 15 acre complex. More than 300 were killed in the battle, including Sikh militant leader Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

In Toronto, Gurdeep Singh Nagra, vice-president of the federation of the Sikh Society of Canada, accused Gandhi of "organized genocide."

"Gandhi wants to crush everyone else but she will never destroy us. We will avenge the destruction of the Golden Temple," Nagra told reporters, adding there would be no violence in Canada.

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