Jallianwala Bagh episode: “Shameful”, says British High Commissioner

 For the British High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis, the massacre of the innocent people on the Vaisakhi Day in 1919 at Jallianwala Bagh was “shameful”. Regretting it during his recent visit to the historic Bagh, Mr Alex Ellis said that the Vaisakhi Day massacre was a dark (black) day  in the history of UK and India. 

Though the British diplomat has regretted the unprovoked firing upon innocent people who had gathered inside the Bagh to demand freedom, a formal apology from the British Government through its Prime Minister was still waited. Though the British Prime Minister visited India some time ago, he did not go to Amritsar to avoid the sensitivities associated with the demand for public apology by the British government for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.

The demand for apology has been gaining ground ever since the  Canadian government apologised on the floor of House Commons for the. Atrocities allegedly committed on the members of Koma Gata Maru group as they were not only refused entry but were  also forced to go back. On return to India, they  were fired upon by British police in Calcutta. Many of them were killed and wounded while others were taken in custody.

Though the demand has been raised in the British House of Commons. Instead of apologising for the dastardly killing of innocent people at the Bagh, the British government has been dilly dallying the demand for public apology.

Accompanied by Deputy High Commissioner Caroline Rowett, the British High Commissioner also paid obeisance at the Golden Temple where  the SGPC chief Harjinder Singh Dhami apprised the visiting diplomats  with the Sikh ‘rehat maryada’ and traditions.

Before leaving, he gave expression to his feelings by writing in the visitors’ book: “What happened in Jallianwala Bagh was shameful… We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused. It is not forgotten.” Similarly, Rowett wrote: “I echo the sentiments of the High Commissioner”.