Sikh leaders of BJP and AAP on Thursday released the old video of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in which he is seen justifying the anti-Sikh riots following the assassination of Indira Gandhi by saying “when a big tree falls, the earth shakes”.
The video was released by AAP leader and senior advocate HS Phoolka and BJP leader RP Singh during a press conference in the national capital.
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Phoolka, who has been fighting for the rights of 1984 Sikh riots victims, demanded that Rajiv Gandhi’s Bharat Ratna Award be withdrawn, and accused him of justifying the 1984 ‘genocide’.
“A Prime Minister who justifies the killing of innocent citizens, definitely does not deserve Bharat Ratna. We therefore call upon the government to withdraw the Bharat Ratna conferred upon Rajiv Gandhi,” Phoolka said.
“A Prime Minister who takes three years even to count the dead bodies of innocent citizens killed in open broad daylight in the capital, a Prime Minister whose party was responsible for a massacre, cannot be a Bharat Ratna. We demand Rajiv Gandhi’s Bharat Ratna’s be taken back,” he said.
BJP leader Singh and Phoolka said that it was difficult to get the video of the speech as the same was deleted from the records and archives of Doordarshan and it was retrieved with much difficulty.
To a question on his sharing the platform with a BJP leader, Phoolka said, “We would try and involve all others for the cause and to help get justice to the victims of the 1984 carnage”.
He named leaders like Brinda Karat, Sharad Yadav and Ram Vilas Paswan, who have helped for the cause of Sikh victims of 1984.
The two were accompanied by another lawyer Tejinder Singh, whose family has suffered in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.