November 7, 2014 | By Parmjeet Singh
Haryana, India: Thirty-eight people, including women and children, from Rewari district’s Hondh Chillar village were burnt alive on November 2, 1984 as part of systematic genocidal massacres of the Sikhs through out India. The bodies of the villagers were later dumped in a well.
Around 20 to 25 Sikh families had been rehabilitated to the village in Haryana from Pakistan after Partition in 1947.
Nothing has remained in this once flourishing village except for three rubbles in the names of structures, including the Gurdwara Sahib. The FIR filed in the case mentions 22 bodies were found in the well adjoining the Gurdwara.
Recalling the day, one of the few survivors, Manmohan Singh Chawla, said more than 500 people from adjoining Pataudi region in Gurgaon district cornered the village.
According to the then Sarpanch of the village, Dhanpat Singh, the attackers arrived in trucks surrounded the village exact. “They came around 11.30 in the morning and surrounded the village. Soon they started setting the village on fire. Many Sikh families took refuge in the local Gurdwara to escape,” he said.
The attackers simply set the Gurdwara on fire, killing all those who had taken shelter inside. They left the village in the evening, Dhanpat Singh said.
Manmohan Singh Chawla recalled, “There was blood all over the Gurdwara. There was so much blood on my body that I thought I was dead.
Later I managed to escape from the village with the help of a tractor driver. He took me to Rewari. I lost my brother and sister in the incident.”
“I and my father took shelter in my uncle’s home. We decided to cut our hair to avoid being identified,” he added.
The Hondh Chillar massacre remained unknown for almost 25 years as the whole village was destroyed during the genocide and the survivors had left Hondh Chillar permanently. The massacre was unearthed by a Sikh Engineer who discovered the site few years back.
The justice remains blatantly denied as no proceedings ever took place in this case.
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