June 7, 2011 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
Toronto (June 7, 2011): On Friday, June 10, 2011, the Sikh community of Toronto will hold a Justice Rally to save the life of Professor Davinder Pal Bhullar from the death sentence issued to him in India for a crime that he was unjustly convicted of. During the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD Canada 2011) convention in downtown Toronto, Sikh community members will converge from the GTA to highlight this grave injustice. The rally is aimed at drawing both national and international attention towards the planned execution of Professor Davinder Pal Singh Bhullar.
The rally will take place between 12 noon to 2 pm on Front Street opposite Metro Toronto Convention Center where Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi along with several other leaders of Congress-I will be attending the PBD Convention, the governing party of India.
Since many Ministers and high officials from India will be attending the PBD Convention, the Sikh community is taking this opportunity to raise the issue of Professor Davinder Pal Singh, which is considered judicial murder under principles of natural justice.
Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar, a former instructor of Guru Nanak Engineering Polytechnic College Ludhiana, Punjab, has been sentenced to death by a split decision of the Supreme Court of India under the pressure of Congress (I). Professor Bhullar has been convicted on the sole basis of a confessional statement given by him during his interrogation through torture and the threat of death. The use of torture to obtain false confessions is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which guarantees due process of law and protection of life to all human beings.
According to attorney Gurpatwant S. Pannun, legal advisor to Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), “Canadian Sikhs will approach and submit a memorandum to Toronto Premier Hon. Dalton McGuinty and H. E. Dr. David Johnston, Governor General of Canada urging them to remind the visiting Indian Ministers that Bhullar’s death sentence is in violation of the universal principles of justice and will be seen as judicial murder in the civilized world. India is not a signatory to UN Convention against Torture and it has been documented by a number of human rights organizations that the Indian police have tortured people under its custody to extract confessions. Earlier there was only extra-judicial killing of Sikhs but Bhullar’s case shows that now Sikhs are also being subjected to ‘judicial murder’ in India.”
According to Jatinder Singh Grewal, Youth Coordinator for SFJ Canada, Bhullar’s planned judicial murder is in continuation of ongoing and systematic oppression of Sikhs in India in which SAD-Badal and Congress-I are complicit. Recent discovery of Mass Graves of Sikh who were killed in November 1984 in Hondh Chillar, Pataudi, Gurgaon, Delhi, and Reasi shows that there has been no justice for November 1984 killings. The police report for the scores of Sikhs in Hondh Chillar had not been even investigated during the past 26 years, added Grewal.
According to Jatinder Singh Grewal, Youth Coordinator SFJ Canada, “the state of India has refused to ratify the UN Convention against Torture yet we continue to do business with this nation. It is time our business community lived up to Canadian values and stopped thinking only of the bottom line. The Badal regime has continuously tortured and killed Sikhs with little or no fear of the international community. By doing business with them today, Canada will be complicit in this horrendous behavior. We must stand up for Canadian values; we must stand up for human rights”.
Amarjit Singh Mann, spokesman for the Ontario Gurdwaras Committee stated, “The Badal government has consistently murdered any Sikh who asked for equality and or justice. Today this ruthless killer is being allowed into Canada on the hopes of increasing business. Canadians find it unacceptable that the some business people and politicians have started to value the dollar more than they value human life. This is completely against Canadian values and we will have our voices of decent heard on June 10th”.
In a joint statement Avtar Singh Punia and Satnam Singh on behalf of United Front of Sikhs stated, Sikhs in India have suffered and persecuted under the rule of Congress-I and SAD-Badal. Sikhs demand that SAD-Badal which is ruling State of Punjab and Congress-I which is ruling party of India should stop the practice of impunity.
The rally to save Bhullar from judicial murder is supported by Ontario Gurudwaras Committee (OGC), Ontario Sikh and Gurudwara Council (OSGC), umbrella organizations of Ontario Gurudwaras, United Front of Sikhs, Shiromani Akali Dal Panch Pardhani, Shiromani Akali Dal Amritsar, Guruwara Jot Parkash Sahib, Gurudwara Mississauga Sahib and other several other Sikh Gurudwaras from Montreal and Ottawa.
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