//The 1984 Pogrom and calls for justice of ‘other' victims of similar massacres

The 1984 Pogrom and calls for justice of ‘other' victims of similar massacres

4 11 2011

Ravinder Kaur

We must not allow the pain and suffering of the Sikh victims to be transformed into a political instrument to mute calls for justice for the ‘other’ victims of similarly orchestrated massacres.

More than a quarter century on, not much remains of ‘1984′ — shorthand for one of the largest pogroms in India’s postcolonial history when thousands of Sikhs were massacred in retribution for Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s assassination — in the public memory. The voices of victims and eyewitnesses one often heard in courtrooms have almost retired in exhaustion. The names of state-appointed serial commissions to establish the facts on ground have by now joined footnotes of history in a long line of ineffective judicial commissions of similar nature. And more remarkably, the miscarriage of justice through long-winded judicial processes where eyewitnesses routinely turn hostile due to threats, incentives, pressures exerted by fixers, or because of plain weariness has ceased evoking any mass outrage.
[. . .]