Prelims level : History in News Mains level : GS-I Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society.
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Why in news?

  • British high commissioner termed the massacre at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar,”a shameful act in British Indian history.

Jallianwala Bagh Massacre:

  • An unarmed but large crowd had gathered on 13 April 1919 at Jallianwalla Bagh to protest against the arrest of their popular leaders, Dr. Saifuddin Kitchlew and Dr. Satyapal.
  • Jallianwala Bagh (located in Amritsar, Punjab) was a large open space which was enclosed on three sides by buildings and had only one exit.
  • General Dyer surrounded the Bagh (garden) with his army until closed the exit with his troops, and then ordered his men to shoot onto the trapped crowd.
  • They fired till their ammunition was exhausted. Thousands were killed and wounded.
  • After this massacre, martial law was proclaimed throughout the Punjab and the people were submitted to most uncivilized atrocities.
  • The Jallianwala Bagh massacre of 1919 in Amritsar as a “shameful scar” on British Indian history. It is also called as Massacre of Amritsar and one of the most tragic yet landmark events in the history of India.
  • This massacre exposed the inhuman approach of the British when the British troop cold- bloodedly open fire into an unarmed crowd without any warning by General Dyer which had assembled at enclosed park for the public meeting that was banned.

How many people died in the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre?

  • There were no official data on the number of deaths during the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre. But on the official enquiry of the British revealed that there were 379 deaths and the Congress quoted more than 1000 people were died in the massacre.
  • Rabindranath Tagore, who had been knighted by the British, renounced his knighthood The massacre marked a turning point in the history of the struggle for freedom.


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