Archbishop of Canterbury says sorry for Jallianwala Bagh massacre


Amritsar, Sep 10 (IANS):  Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Portal Welby expressed grief and prayed for healing of agony, loss and anger on his visit to the Jallianwala Bagh, a remembrance of the British era massacre, here on Tuesday.

"I feel a deep sense of grief, humility and profound shame having visited the site of the horrific #JallianwalaBagh massacre in Amritsar today. Here, a great number of Sikhs -- as well as Hindus, Muslims and Christians -- were shot dead by British troops in 1919," he tweeted.

In his another tweet, he said his first response is to pray to god for healing for those still suffering grief, loss and anger. "And prayer means I must also commit to actions that bridge divides of culture and religion -- that together we can root out hatred and seek the common good."

Accompanied by wife Caroline, the Archbishop reached the city also known for the Harmandir Sahib, the holiest of Sikh shrines popularly known as Golden Temple, on Monday in his last leg of a 10-day tour.

In a message for the book of condolences at the memorial, the Archbishop wrote: "It is deeply humbling and provokes feelings of profound shame for me as British Christian to visit this place that witnessed such an atrocity over a hundred years ago."

The Jallianwala Bagh massacre is testimony to the brutal killings of innocent and reminds the younger generation of the supreme sacrifices made during India's freedom movement.

In a Facebook post, the Archbishop wrote: "I feel a deep sense of grief having visited the site of the horrific Jallianwala Bagh massacre today in Amritsar, where a great number of Sikhs, as well as Hindus, Muslims and Christians, were shot dead by British troops in 1919.

"I have no status to apologise on behalf of the UK, its government or its history. But I am personally very sorry for this terrible atrocity.

"Coming here arouses a sense of profound shame at what happened in this place. It is one of a number of deep stains on British history. The pain and grief that has transcended the generations since must never be dismissed or denied."

Learning of what happened, the Archbishop said, "I recognise the sins of my British colonial history, the ideology that too often subjugated and dehumanised other races and cultures. Jesus Christ calls us to turn away from sin and to turn to Him as Lord,"

At his visit to the Jallianwala Bagh on February 20, 2013, British Prime Minister David Cameron described the massacre as "a deeply shameful event in British history".

"This was a deeply shameful act in British history. One that Winston Churchill rightly described at that time as monstrous. We must never forget what happened here and we must ensure that the UK stands up for the right of peaceful protests," Cameron wrote in the visitors' book of the memorial. 

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Comment on this article

  • Rolf, Dubai

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Tippu was right.

    Jai Tippu sulthan.

    DisAgree [35] Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • SK, Qatar

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    May be bishop spoke by his Christians faith by based on teaching of Christ.
    History we can learn lesson like British in India,Hitler in Germany, Pearl Harbour in USA became Japan bomb. Now all are good friends.
    We are living in modern era ,In this era we need every country support & cooperation. Who will living in friendly they alive otherwise fall.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [18] Reply Report Abuse

  • Arthur, Mangalore

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Commenters denouncing British rule in the ENGLISH language lack self awareness.

    DisAgree [3] Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • Jossey Saldanha, Atlanta

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    We are waiting for Godhra ...

    DisAgree [24] Agree [26] Reply Report Abuse

  • Krishna, Udupi

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    so called secular will ask sorry for that too including 1984 sikh riot and Kashmir Pandiths Mass killing....

    DisAgree [1] Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • H. Almeida., Bendur/Andheri

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    The British empire, literally ruled the world....came into our land, as traders and then seeing the divisions among us, they cleverly, further divided the sub continent and finally captured the entire Indian diaspora.... looted us bone dry and eventually divided us, before quitting, for all eternity, in the name of religion...... Their legacy, of divide and rule, was carried forward, by the Congress dynasty, for more the six decades....... The least that the British Royalists, can do now is to return the Kohinoor diamond, adorning, the crown of Queen Elizabeth !!!!!!!

    DisAgree [14] Agree [16] Reply Report Abuse

  • richard, shirva

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    apology for sympathy conversion in Punjab - which goras trying south to north now!!..Sikhas need to check carefully their vision...don't be prey of apology now!!!...

    DisAgree [63] Agree [19] Reply Report Abuse

  • Deshbhakht, Mangalore

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    India's Christian population is static for several decades, disproving your claim of conversion. You stop girls of North from marrying Ghoras and Punjabi men marrying ghori-mems for migration purposes.

    DisAgree [10] Agree [47] Reply Report Abuse

  • SK, Qatar

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Fake profile spotted , this man talking about " Hare Raama Hare Krishna conversion in Russia & Europe.
    First you talk about , How many hindu mother & Hindu babys died in india without treatment in hospital. First learn to set up our own issue. All religion are good for good people.

    DisAgree [9] Agree [34] Reply Report Abuse

  • Jossey Saldanha, Atlanta

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Good Comment from Richard Shetty ...

    DisAgree [11] Agree [28] Reply Report Abuse

  • Amit, Mangalore

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    @richard koraga kumar Bhatta , your observations are hilarious!!!!!

    DisAgree [7] Agree [27] Reply Report Abuse

  • concerned indian, Mangalore

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Entire 200 years were dark days.

    DisAgree [5] Agree [10] Reply Report Abuse

  • Devdas, Barkur

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    This goras go to any extent to please anybody. Why commit wrong in first place. Can they answer it. Occupying other's land is accepted in there religion. Why they invade country where in people are weak..having no weapons. Who given right to goras..?? Before apologing go and ask head of country.

    DisAgree [43] Agree [21] Reply Report Abuse

  • John Tauro, M'lore

    Tue, Sep 10 2019

    Wrongs or atrocities were committed out of arrogance and show of power. In the western countries occupation of others land is acceptable in their politics, not in their religion. There political issues are not governed by religion. Whereas in the east, religion dominates politics. For instance Pakistan’s claim over Kashmir is determined by religion rather than political events of the time.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [18] Reply Report Abuse

  • Dr MICHAEL GONSALVES, BANGALORE

    Wed, Sep 11 2019

    Atleast these GORAS have courtesy to say sorry for the mistake done by ancestor / relative or OLD GORAS, But what about these KAPPUS . Will they ask sorry or do they have any guts / feelings / emotions / mistake done by them.

    Dear KAPPU S.
    Do you now the value of forgiveness, love , service to human kind ..? learn from these GORAS . Why all these kappus wants to settle down in GORAS Country..? let all kappu come down to back home. You will lag behind 100 year if you challenge these GORAS.

    DisAgree Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse


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