Jallanwala Bagh Incident 1919
Jallianwala Bagh incident or Massacre of Amritsar In India took place on 13th April, 1919. On the day of Baisakhi (Vaisakhi), a crowd of about 10000 unarmed people was gathered in the plain of Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar, India. British army opened fire on the crowd that left hundreds of people killed and injured. This incident turned the atmosphere of India, affected the Indo-British relations and Indians were committed to get independence from the British Rule.
Main reason behind this ruthless action by General Dyer was that the British arrested two leaders of independence movement and people were protesting for release of their leaders. Indian angry mobs attacked English missionary during protest and General Dyer imposed Martial Law on April 12, 1919. According to this imposition, public was not allowed to gather but public was not aware of it.
The people gathered in the Bagh just to celebrate Vesakhi (Baishakhi) event and they were not part of protest. It is notable point that Women and children were also present in the Bagh to celebrate the annual event of Baisakhi or Vesakhi. The whole crowd was unarmed.
It is reported that no warning was given by the troops before opening of fire on the crowd. General Dyer brought with him Gorkha and Balochi soldiers for this ruthless action and they continued the firing till the finish of amunitions. Two army vehicles equipped with machine guns were also used in this operation to kill the unarmed crowd.
Jallianwala bagh had only one entrance and exit gate which was covered by the troops due to which no one could escape.To escape the fire and to save their lives, many people jumped into a well inside garden and lost their lives.
About 1650 bullets were fired which can be seen on the walls and bricks of the garden. More than 400 people were killed and 1200 injured. General Dyer declared this ruthless act necessary to bring “Moral and widespread effect”. He further said that firing would had continued if the troops had not ran out of ammunition.
Jallianwala Bagh incident bullet marks are clear on the above picture.
The Governer of the Punjab supported this ruthless act of cruel Dyer and imposed martial law in the province of Punjab on 15th of Aoril 1919.
The then Viceroy Chelmsford, named the action as “an error of judgment,”. Secretary of State Montagu appointed a commission to inquire, headed by Lord Hunter and awfterwards General Dyer was subsequently relieved of his command. When he returned back to UK, he presented as a hero and House of Lords awarded him with a jeweled sword inscribed “Saviour of the Punjab.”
Utham Singh a member of Gadar party killed general dyer on 13th of March 1940 to take revenge of Jallanwala Bagh incident.
Rabinder Nath Tagore renounced the award of knighthood awarded to him by the british governments