"Baatcheet" in the Tone of Aurangzeb

Excerpts Taken From Chakravyuh: Web Of Indian Secularism By Gurtej Singh


In the authoritative bulletin of the Indian army, Baatcheet of June 1984, we have a rare political document, which completely lays bare the imperialistic design hatched by the Hindu leaders of our times. This confirms the worst of what has been attributed to earlier leaders and goes much beyond. It is a document, which totally confirms the predictions of Puran Singh about the communal nature of Indian polity. The invectives of Rabindranath Tagore against the creation of Khalsa, which were later borrowed by the Bengal school of Sikh historians and presented in a more civilized language, become forcefully alive in the context of this document. It provides conclusive evidence of the mentality, which has been noticeable throughout history. Around 1922, the whole of the Hindu Congress leadership in India adopted the implications of Tagore's analysis of Sikh history. These are fully represented in the Baatcheet.

Every basic proposition of this bulletin is inspired by the imperial designs of a permanent cultural majority. This single document would suffice to completely sum up the majoritarian arrogance assumed by the Hindus in de-colonized India. Some of its salient features may be analyzed here. It is in order to state in the very beginning that this is one of the rare statements every word of which is untrue. It is now known to one and all that the army action in the Punjab had been planned much earlier and the army had been given proper training to assault the different buildings in Sri Darbar Sahib complex. A life-size model of the complex had been used. More than one honourable witnesses have confirmed that it was Indira Gandhi who reneged the agreements with the Akalis, arrived at on her specific instructions, by her accredited emissaries. Still the Baatcheet asserts that the Akalis could not reach an agreement and that the army assault "was the last resort". There was no element of "reluctance" in the attack but the events were so ordered as to make the final attack a deliberate celebration, which would yield to conversion of votes at the coming general elections. The fiction of the "extremists" having taken over is persisted with. It is well known that Sant Baba Jarnail Singh Bhinderanwale insisted on maintaining that he was merely following the policy of the Akali leadership and strictly conducted himself according to his profession.

The police and para-military forces had surrounded Sri Darbar Sahib for at least two full years before June 1984. The complex teemed with policemen in plain clothes and regular secret agents. There was no place in the complex, which could be hidden from the public eye. It was a part of the Chakravyuh erecting to propagate that the complex had been fortified, arms had been collected there and that extremists had taken shelter therein. It was obvious that whatever and whosoever was allowed to filter through the thick sieve of government cordon woven outside and inside the Darbar complex, could only reach those inside the complex. In the notorious White Paper, the government had given photographs of fortifications ostensibly made by the militants. Later several of these fortifications were identified as those actually erected by the Central Reserve Police Force. Photographs of some had already appeared earlier in the Press with that identification. It is also well known that just a few months before the attack, the government was worried that there were no weapons inside the complex to justify the drastic action it had decided upon. So arms were smuggled across from Pakistan by the government's own secret "Third Agency" and dumped into the complex. I personally know the facts. In the summer of 1983, I was first chosen as one possible smuggler of weapons into the complex. The approach was crude and direct. A serving Brigadier, posted at Jalandhar came along with my acquaintance in the official army Jonga driven by an army-man and attended by an orderly. Posing as a good Sikh, he pretended to be worried that though the attack on the complex was coming soon, the Sant had no weapons. He offered a truckload, which I could take into the complex in a kar-sewa truck. I had taken my National Cadet Corps service and my army attachment seriously and it was easy for me to smell many rats in the proposition. So declining the singular honour came almost spontaneously to me. I later learnt that the deed was done by the acquaintance who had accompanied the Brigadier on the occasion of this meeting. That the truck carrying them was intercepted by the district police and was allowed to proceed to the complex on orders from the "high ups". This fact was reported in the Press at that time. I also know that these weapons were maintained by the secret agents inside and were never available to the beleaguered, defiant Sant.

"Bad elements wanted by the police" carrying on "illegal activity" from inside the complex -- is a fiction which is difficult to maintain. When the then Home Minister of India first made the allegation, the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) offered to surrender all such elements and asked for a list of such offenders. The list supplied by the Home Minister included a large number against whom no complaint had been registered anywhere, many who were already in police custody and a few who were dead. It also included several who were freely roaming around outside. Bhai Ranjit Singh was surrendered by the SGPC around that time. Against Sant Baba Jarnail Singh Bhinderanwale himself, there was only one mandatory First Information Report of a "crime". It pertained to an intemperate speech he was supposed to have made while addressing the congregation at Manji Sahib. The only proof of Pakistani nationals having entered Darbar Sahib "dressed as Nihangs" was the alleged discovery of dead bodies on which sunnat had been performed. There is no knowing as to whether these were actually discovered or whether the sunnat was a post mortem contribution, as no independent witnesses were allowed by the army authorities into the complex after the killing spree lasting upto at least June 7, 1984. By supreme irrationality, sunnat was taken to be the final proof of nationality. The attempt to create a rift between the Sikhs and Muslims is plainly discernible in the insinuation.

The cliché about "honouring all religions" sounds so pleasing in the Indian context but "except Sikhism" can almost be axiomatically read into it. The attack on Sri Darbar Sahib was deliberately made on the martyrdom day of Guru Arjun Dev. The crowd was expected to be the thickest on that day and the curfew around the complex was relaxed for a few hours to let in the maximum number of people. They were all trapped to be killed as is borne out by the events which followed. Forty other shrines all over the Punjab were also similarly besieged and attacked simultaneously. The Sikh Reference Library in the complex was burnt to ashes in the style of the Medieval Muslim crusaders. In this context can also be read the spurious claims of being "pledged to democracy and secularism."

The punch line is still to come. First the prelude; Baatcheet defines "Amritdharis" as "innocent countrymen" who have been administered religious oath "to support extremists". They are condemned as people "pledged to commit murder, arson, terrorism". All this is from an army which has razed the holiest shrine, killed scripture readers, women and children and had just set fire to the library stocked with manuscripts many of which were more than two hundred years old. Such are the benefits of Chakravyuh and the maya in which it is basically wrapped, that anything can be made to seem anything opposite to it. Young people fighting for their legitimate rights and in defence of the shrines of their faith are dubbed criminals while those raiding temples are termed patriots and restorers of sanctity and preservers of unity and integrity of the country. Those, whose forefathers had shed more blood to defend the honour of their countrymen than the water in all the five rivers of the Punjab are condemned as criminals committed to terrorism. We hear an echo of the petty hill-kings around Anandpur Sahib and of M. K. Gandhi's pronouncements at prayer meetings in the words, "these people wearing miniature kirpans around their necks" are to be "subdued".

Those who like to verify facts for themselves, can read, "the army has exhibited great restraint and discipline by not even pointing their weapons towards Harmandar Sahib." Then they can then go and count the 380 bullet marks all over the Harmandar. Amongst the martyrs at the shrine have been counted the priests and a sacred manuscript volume of the Holy Scripture.

Those who may not have read the "white paper," need to do so no longer because there is nothing in it which is not there in the Baatcheet.

Original Document Of the Indian Army

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