Redbridge Sikhs join in Trafalgar Square demo

More than 500 Sikhs from Redbridge attended a march in central London yesterday to mark the 28th anniversary of the storming of the Golden Temple in Amritsar in 1984.

Tens of thousands of Sikhs gathered in Hyde Park before setting off for Trafalgar Square which was transformed into a sea of orange.

Police escorted the marchers in an event that has become a regular occurrence for many British Sikhs.

Swarn Singh-Kandola, 75, from The Drive, Ilford, said: “It was a sad occasion. At the march all the way down the street all you could see were saffron, blue and black turbans. There were many people there from youngsters to the very old.”

Operation Blue Star was an Indian Army led operation, launched in June 1984 in Amritsar, to flush out Sikh militants from the Golden Temple, their holiest shrine.

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It led to the deaths, not only of a group of Sikhs led by Sant Jarnail Bhindranwale but also of thousands of innocent pilgrims. It also led to the assassination of the Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards.

Mr Singh Kandola said: “The march keeps these things alive.”

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