Thousands of Sikhs attend parade in Italy ahead of Khalistan referendum
- Thousands of Sikhs from across the EU gather in the Italian city of Brescia.
- The Khalistan referendum vote will take place on Sunday.
- Sikhs participated in historic Nagarkirtan parade to celebrate Vaisakhi festival and demand an independent state of Khalistan.
BRESCIA, ITALY: Thousands of Sikhs from across the European Union (EU) have gathered in the Italian city of Brescia to take part in the European phase of the global referendum on Khalistan for the secession of Punjab from India.
The international Sikh advocacy group Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) organized the Khalistan referendum movement and brought out thousands of Sikhs in the UK, Geneva and now Italy.
The Khalistan referendum vote will take place on Sunday at Brixia Forum, Via Caprera, 5 25125 Brescia (BS) but Sikhs took part in the historic Nagarkirtan parade to celebrate the Vaisakhi festival and demand an independent Khalistan state for millions of Sikhs.
Sikhs For Justice said Italy is home to over 200,000 Sikhs who are a vibrant part of the Italian community and that is why this city was chosen for the parade and referendum.
Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, General Counsel (NY) of SFJ, said the enthusiastic participation of Sikhs in the Nagarkirtan parade showed the desire and demand of Sikhs to separate themselves from Indian occupation in order to live in the free land of Khalistan where the Sikhs live under the teachings of their Gurus.
Dr. Bakhshish Singh Sandhu, Chairman of the Council of Khalistan, Washington DC, said that “under international law and the Charter of the United Nations, Sikhs have a clear case for the right to self-determination on the grounds that they have a distinct and separate religious identity and language and that they have been subjected to genocide by India since 1984.”
Under Prime Minister Modi, the persecution of Sikhs for supporting the Khalistan referendum campaign has increased as hundreds have been charged, detained and tortured under colonial-era sedition laws.
Dupinderjit Singh, Coordinator of Sikhs For Justice UK, said: “The referendum in Khalistan is a legal and democratic campaign because the use of the ballot is the most legitimate and peaceful method of determining the will of the people on a political issue. “. Under the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Sikh people have the right to express their will through a referendum on the question of the continued and future association of Punjab. with India.
The Sikh movement for Khalistan has its roots in India’s June 1984 military action – Operation Blue Star – against the Sikh Golden Temple of Amritsar in which thousands of Sikh pilgrims were massacred by the security forces and consequently led to the assassination of former Prime Minister Indira. Gandhi on October 31 followed by genocidal violence against Sikhs across India.
Ahead of the Italian phase of the Khalistan referendum, voting was launched on October 31 from London, UK, where thousands of British Sikhs lined up to vote as the Indian government tried unsuccessfully to block the vote. event and spread several fake news to dissuade Sikh voters from attending the referendum.
The first-ever non-governmental referendum on the question “whether India-ruled Punjab is an independent country” is being held under the supervision of the independent Punjab Referendum Commission (PRC) composed of non-aligned global experts. independence referendums.
The commission’s mandate is to ensure transparency, legitimacy and adherence to best practices during the voting and balloting procedures of the Khalistan Referendum.