LONDON — Theresa May on Wednesday described the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in Amritsar as a “shameful scar” on British Indian history, as the British Prime Minister marked the 100th anniversary of the tragic incident but she stopped short of a formal apology.
At the start of May’s weekly Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons she fell short of a formal apology sought by a cross-section of Parliament in previous debates and reiterated the “regret” already expressed by the British Government.
“The tragedy of Jallianwala Bagh of 1919 is a shameful scar on British Indian history. As Her Majesty the Queen (Elizabeth II) said before visiting Jallianwala Bagh in 1997, it is a distressing example of our past history with India,” she said in her statement.
The massacre took place in Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar over Baisakhi in April 1919 when troops of the British Indian Army under the command of Colonel Dyer fired machine guns at a crowd of people holding a pro-independence demonstration. It claimed thousands of lives and injured thousands others.