1. The important role of the Army and Police in eradicating Khalistani terrorism
1A. Indian troops break the shackles of Khalistani terrorism : When Khalistan terrorism was rampant in Punjab, my battalion ‘7 Maratha Light Infantry’ was stationed in Gurdaspur area to stop terrorists coming from Pakistan. Even after Operation Blue Star, our battalion was still there to capture the terrorists. I have personally fought against these terrorists. We have experienced Khalistani terrorism. In 1990s, Indian troops broke its back. I have lost many of my colleagues in this struggle.
1B. ‘Operation Blue Star’ and ‘Operation Thunder’ against terrorists : In June 1984, 500 to 600 Khalistani terrorists entered the Golden Temple. Indian troops had to enter the Golden Temple to kill them. This was ‘Operation Blue Star’. Indian troops killed the militants during this operation but alater, terrorism spread to other areas. ‘Operation Thunder’ was launched after 2 years. The terrorists re-entered the Golden Temple but this time the Army did not enter the Golden Temple. They killed the terrorists using snipers. This campaign is considered to be very successful.
1C. Khalistani terrorism, Prime Minister and Chief Minister : Former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her own bodyguards who were Khalistani terrorists. Subsequently, riots broke out in Delhi and some major cities in North India. Mobs targeted the Sikh community. So, once again, Khalistani terrorism erupted.
From 1984 to 1986, the Indian Army had to shed a lot of blood. In 1990, the back of this terrorism was completely broken. Julio Ribeiro, Director General of Punjab Police then, played an important role in this. Punjab DGP KPS Gill also has a big contribution. IGP Virk also did a great job.
The then Chief Minister of Punjab, Beant Singh played an important role in the eradication of terrorism from Punjab. Due to this, the terrorists were angry with him. In 1995, terrorists killed him in a bomb blast. Now, the Khalistani terrorism is almost finished and the situation is under control.
2. China and Pakistan trying to revive Khalistani terrorism in India
China and Pakistan are trying to revive Khalistani terrorism in India but they are not getting any success. China and Pakistan want to create instability in India through terrorism. Khalistanis have not been able to carry out acts such as explosions but they select devout Hindu leaders as ‘soft targets’. They have a good network outside India. In 2015, there was a terrorist attack at Gurdaspur, in which terrorists were from outside the country. Khalistanis are currently based in Canada, England and the United States. Whatever efforts China and Pakistan are making, Punjab cannot become Khalistan. Khalistan does not have the support of the people of Punjab. Many youth from Punjab are in the Indian Army. They will never do anything wrong.
3. India must be prepared to answer Khalistani supporters abroad
There are some Sikh Ministers in the Canadian cabinet. A couple of them are Khalistan supporters. They express their opinion. The same happens in England. Khalistanis are given prominence because of politics of the ballot box. Some MPs in England raised the issue of Khalistan in the British Parliament. One should ask if they are talking about the internal matters of India; then should India talk about the freedom movement of Ireland ?
If Canada is so supportive of Khalistan, they should declare a part of their country as Khalistan. Most recently, Canada could not produce any vaccine against coronavirus. They had to take it from India. There will be no Khalistan in India; however, India must make efforts in giving a strong reply to Khalistani supporters in Canada, England and the United States.
4. Drug terrorism in Punjab
Today, opium, marijuana and hashish terrorism is rampant in Punjab, which is an extremely serious matter. So, we have to be very alert. According to the Punjab Chief Minister, Pakistan sends drugs and weapons to Punjab with the help of drones. Many such drones have been intercepted in Punjab. Pakistan does not know how to operate the drones; but China, Pakistan’s ally, has provided it with state-of-the-art drones. With their help, drugs and counterfeit notes are sent to Punjab. After Khalistani terrorism, Punjab is plagued by ‘Udta Punjab’, meaning, drug terrorism. A lot of Punjabi youth are addicted to drugs. Unfortunately, this has spread to other parts of the country as well.
– (Retd.) Brigadier Hemant Mahajan, Pune.