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Remembering Jallianwala Bagh: Unveiling untold stories and historical insights

The tragedy will forever remain a testament to the resilience and fortitude of a nation determined to break free from the shackles of colonialism



The Jallianwala Bagh massacre stands as one of the darkest chapters in India’s struggle for Independence, etched forever in the annals of history. The bloodbath that unfolded at the heart of Amritsar, Punjab, left an indelible mark on the collective consciousness of the nation. Yet, beyond the harrowing accounts that have permeated textbooks and historical narratives, lie lesser-known facets and untold stories that add depth to this pivotal event.

“On the day of Baisakhi (Harvest Festival) a large crowd had gathered on April 13, 1919 at Amritsar in the Jallianwala Bagh to celebrate their harvest festival. Most of the people were unaware that the city was under curfew. Some leaders and their followers also gathered in the same Bagh (Garden) to protest against the arrest of their popular leaders like Dr Saifuddin Kitchlew and Dr Satyapal Mallik. General Dyer, the military commander of Amritsar, without any warning, gave an order to fire on an unarmed crowd, killing hundreds of people. The bagh was surrounded by high walls and the only one gate was manned by Dyer’s army,” explained Baljit Khuttan, TGT Social Science, Apeejay School, Model Town, Jalandhar.

 “The massacre remains a dark chapter in India’s history, and its impact can still be felt today. The incident served as a catalyst for India’s freedom struggle and inspired many Indians to fight for their independence,” Khuttan added.

The ruthless onslaught lasted for approximately 10 minutes, leaving hundreds dead and thousands injured. The merciless brutality of the British forces shook the foundations of colonial rule and galvanised the Indian Freedom Movement.

“The massacre exposed the true nature of colonial rule. It was condemned worldwide. Under pressure the government appointed an enquiry commission headed by Lord William Hunter, Ex. Solicitor-General and the Senator of the “College of Justice in Scotland”. As expected nothing serious came out from the inquiry. An English newspaper of England The Morning Post even collected fund to defend General Dyer,” the educator shared.

“There are certain untold stories and unknown facts about the fateful day,” said Priya Rana, TGT, Social Science at Apeejay School, Rama Mandi.

1. The gathering was a friendly gathering to celebrate a festival – Baisakhi, one of the biggest festivals in Punjab.

2. Apart from Gurkha and Baluchi soldiers using Scinde rifles, there were also two armoured cars with machine guns that were used in the shooting.

3. According to records, the people gathered were not warned or asked to disperse before Colonel Dyer ordered the firing.

4. The firing stopped only when the soldiers ran out of ammunition.

5. Apart from the people killed and injured by the bullets, many others lost their lives as they fell into a well trying to escape the shooting.

6. Colonel Reginald Dyer was shot dead on March 13, 1940, by Udham Singh, a member of the revolutionary Ghadar Party who was on a mission of revenge for the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre.

7. The tragedy deeply influenced renowned poets and writers of the time, such as Rabindranath Tagore, whose renunciation of his knighthood in protest against the massacre echoed the sentiments of millions across the nation.

Legacy and Remembrance

Despite the passage of time, the memory of Jallianwala Bagh continues to evoke profound emotions of sorrow, indignation, and reverence. The site, now transformed into a memorial, stands as a solemn reminder of the sacrifices made by countless martyrs in the pursuit of freedom and justice.

Anubha Singh is the Principal Correspondent with Apeejay Newsroom. Having a journalism and mass communication background, she has varied experience with renowned print publications like Hindustan Times, The Pioneer and Deccan Chronicle. Her niche expertise lies in reporting and content creation for different core areas. She can be reached at [email protected] for any communication.

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