Sikhs to hold Khalistan Referendum as Modi to host Albanese
February 11, 2023 11:30 PM
As Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is gearing up to host Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, the Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) has announced Khalistan Referendum in Brisbane on March 19.
"While the Modi government pursues violence to crush the Khalistan referendum, the SFJ is using voting to resolve the decades-old conflict between Sikhs and the Union of India," General Counsel Tunat Singh said in a video message. He added: "We request Prime Minister Albani to teach Modi that in a democracy, voting for secession and The pursuit of freedom cannot be called terrorism.”
The SFJ announced that several families of victims of the November 1984 Sikh Genocide from 32 Block Tirlokpuri, Delhi will travel to Brisbane on March 19 to campaign for the Khalistan Referendum vote.
Tirlokpuri is a Delhi neighbourhood where Hindu death squads were led by Congress leader Bhagat and BJP leader Ram Jain in November 1984, who were close associates of then BJP chief PM Vajpayee. Death squads killed more than 450 Sikh men and gang-raped more than 100 Sikh women in broad daylight in the presence of the police.
Two weeks ago, more than 55,000 Sikhs voted in Melbourne's Federation Square for the Khalistan Referendum to demand the creation of Khalistan in Indian Punjab.
While more than 55,000 Sikh men and women - over the age of 18 - were eligible to cast their votes, an estimated 15,000 voters were unable to cast their votes due to time constraints.
An estimated 300,000 Sikhs live in Australian cities and the SFJ announced that it would move the referendum campaign to other cities to accommodate Sikhs wishing to express their democratic right to Khalistan.
Clashes broke out between Sikh youths and Hindutva supporters outside the polling centres and local police arrested at least two people. Videos show a group of Hindu supporters attacking Sikh voters. Sikhs for Justice also released videos of a group of Indian men attempting to vandalize Sikh Gurdwaras and actually vandalise three local Gurdwaras for supporting the Khalistan referendum.
The Indian government has launched complaints against the governments of Britain, Canada and Australia against Sikh groups, particularly Sikhs for Justice, for campaigning in favour of Khalistan. These governments have told Indians that no law has been violated and that they can do nothing to prevent their citizens from participating in the democratic exercise while they stand by the Indian government.
Last week, India told Canada that the Khalistan issue was a "national security concern" for New Delhi and that Ottawa should take tough action against Sikh groups. Sikhs for Justice says its activities are democratic and peaceful and are governed by local laws.