Sadiq Khan calls on United Kingdom government to apologise for Jallianwala Bagh massacre

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"It is wrong that successive British governments have fallen short of delivering a formal apology to the families of those who were killed".

The massacre took place on April 13, 1919, when British troops, commanded by Brigadier-General Reginald Dyer, opened fire at a crowd of unarmed people, on the harvest festival of Baisakhi.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar on Wednesday. A large number of people were killed in the incident. The UK-based Sikh Federation had also asked political parties to make it an election agenda to seek apology for Jallianwala Bagh in the recent general election held in Britain.

During a visit to the Golden Temple at Amritsar, the most important pilgrimage site of Sikhism, Khan called the massacre one of the most horrific events in Indian history.

Talking to media after paying respects at Jallianwala Bagh memorial and garden, he made it clear that nearly 100 years after the awful event, the British government should formally apologise for it. This is about properly acknowledging what happened here and giving the people of Amritsar and India the closure they need through a formal apology.

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Almost 100 years later, it remains a controversial subject as many British dignitaries, including Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Phillip, and former prime minister David Cameron, have visited Jallianwala Bagh to pay their respects. Indian Sikhs, Hindus, Muslims were peacefully protesting against the British government. "These courageous individuals sacrificed an enormous amount to defend the freedoms that we enjoy today and it is only right that there is a memorial in our capital city to honour the Sikhs who fought to preserve our freedoms", Khan said.

"It was incredibly moving to visit Jallianwala Bagh". The memorial was inaugurated in 1961 and serves as a way to remember those who died and were injured in the massacre.

Wrapping up his first official tour to India, the London Mayor, earlier on Wednesday, also paid obeisance at the holy shrine of Golden Temple.

Mayor Khan held meetings with business heads and Indian government ministers during his visit to Mumbai, Delhi and Amritsar in India.

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