Jallianwala Bagh Massacre: 96th Anniversary Remembered On Twitter

13/04/2015 12:30 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Twitter, today, marked the 96th anniversary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in Amritsar, where British-Indian troops, comprising mostly of Gurkhas, opened fire at a peaceful gathering of Punjabis on April 13, 1919.

It was General Reginald Dyer who gave the orders to shoot at the unarmed men, women and children, who were staging a protest against the arrest their leaders, and demanding freedom from the British.

Dyer had all the exits blocked so many of those trapped were forced to jump into a well, located inside the Bagh, to escape the volley of bullets. The troops fired until their ammunition was exhausted.

Official British sources put the number of dead at 379 but actual death toll is believed to be much higher. Dyer was removed from his command by the British government.

The Tribune reported that those killed in the massacre were given the status of freedom fighters in 2008. Today, their descendants will reportedly hold a protest to demand benefits such as such as reservation in jobs, free travel and priority in gas or petrol pump dealership.

The tragedy, one of the most horrific instances of brutality to suppress India's independence movement, and deeply saddening for Indians to this day, remains a sore point between India and Britain. Relatives of the dead believe that Britain has not been adequately censured for the killing of innocent protestors, and its government have never fully apologised.

In 1997, Queen Elizabeth paid 30 seconds of silent homage at Jallianwala Bagh. In 2013, David Cameron was the first serving British prime minister to visit the site of the massacre, but he too stopped short of delivering an apology.

"In my view," he said, "we are dealing with something here that happened a good 40 years before I was even born, and which Winston Churchill described as 'monstrous' at the time and the British government rightly condemned at the time. So I don't think the right thing is to reach back into history and to seek out things you can apologise for."

Here is how Twitter remembered Jallianwala Bagh:

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