Last Updated on 12 April 2023, 4:07 PM IST: Jallianwala Bagh Massacre: The Jallianwala Bagh Hatyakand took place on April 13, 1919 when British Indian Army troops, under the command of Colonel Reginald Dyer, fired indiscriminately at unarmed protesters and pilgrims gathered at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar Punjab on the occasion of Baisakhi. The British army blocked all the exits and began firing on them. Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer had instructed the soldiers not to stop firing until all their bullets were gone. Hundreds of Indians were killed. The genocide became a milestone in India’s liberation struggle.
The Jallianwala Bagh Hatyakand (Massacre): Highlights
- The massacre took place on April 13, 1919 at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar, Punjab
- British troops under Brig. Gen. Dyer fired indiscriminately at unarmed protesters
- The Rowlatt Acts allowed imprisonment without trial and judicial review
- Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer was given the task of restoring order
- Jallianwala Bagh was the first spark that led to Indian Independence
- The BJP-led central government took renovation of the Jallianwala Bagh
- Udham Singh killed Michael O’Dwyer at Caxton Hall in London on March 13 1940
- Udham Singh was tried and found guilty of murdering and hanged in July 1940
- Britain did not achieve with fraudulent behavior, know true purpose of human life
The Jallianwala Bagh Hatyakand (Massacre): Background
During World War I (1914-18) the British Indian government set up a series of repressive measures aimed at overthrowing any rebellion from Indian Freedom Fighters. At the end of the war, Indians hoped that those measures would be eased and they would be granted more political independence.
The Montagu–Chelmsford Reforms became the basis of new acts known as the Rowlatt Acts, approved by the British Indian government in early 1919. The acts allowed imprisonment without trial and judicial review. It led to widespread anger and dissatisfaction among the Indians.
The news of the prominent Indian leaders’ arrest in Amritsar sparked violent protests on April 10 in which soldiers shot civilians, buildings looted and burned, and angry mobs killed scores of foreigners and severely beat a Christian missionary. A British troop commanded by Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer was given the task of restoring order. Among the measures taken was the banning of public gatherings.
Jallianwala Bagh Massacre April 13, 1919: Sequence of Events
- The Punjab Government set out to suppress all opposition to the Rowlatt Acts.
- On April 13, 1919, the pilgrims had gathered to celebrate Baisakhi as they do every year.
- A part of the gathering was peacefully protesting the Rowlatt Acts and the arrest of two national leaders – Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew.
- General Dyer’s orders prohibited assembly, and assumed that it was a political gathering at Jallianwala Bagh.
- Brigadier-General Dyer entered the Bagh with his troops, and ordered them to open fire without giving any warning.
- The unarmed and unprepared people rushed to the exit but Dyer had closed the exit.
- 1650 rounds were fired till the ammunition had run out.
- The total estimated figure of the dead as given by General Dyer and Mr Irving was 291.
- A committee headed by Madan Mohan Malviya reported a total death toll of over 500.
- Sir Michael O’ Dwyer, Lieutenant- Governor approved General Dyer’s actions on the day.
- Both Dyer and Dwyer faced violent criticism from various newspapers
- On October 14, 1919, the Hunter Commission was formed to inquire about the massacre.
- General Dyer presented the evidence before the Hunter Commission that was a confession of the brutal act he committed.
- The Commission pointed out the massacre as one of the darkest episodes of the British Administration.
- The Hunter Commission recommended removal of Dyer from service in 1920.
- Udham Singh, an Indian freedom fighter, went to London and believed that Michael O’Dwyer was the main planner and had approved Dyer’s action.
- On March 13 1940, at Caxton Hall in London, Udham SIngh killed Michael O’Dwyer.
- Udham Singh was subsequently tried and found guilty of murdering and hanged in July 1940.
The Massacre Sparked That Led to Indian Independence
The Jallianwala Bagh massacre incident shocked the entire nation. As news of the incident spread, crowds flooded the streets of many northern Indian cities. There were strikes, police clashes and attacks on government buildings. The government responded with brutal pressure, seeking to humiliate and intimidate the people. As a result of the massacre, Nobel laureate and poet Rabindranath Tagore, who had been knighted by the British in 1915, renounced his knighthood.
Many Indians who believed in the British concept of justice and fair play lost their faith in the British government. They were initially hesitant to act, but after the incident they started nonviolent protest (satyagraha) and the noncooperation movement (1920–22). Jallianwala Bagh was the first spark that led to Indian Independence. It was a disaster for the sick colonial rulers. It reveals a dangerous flaw in their thinking and spirit. Eventually, it led to their departure from the land that they had hoped to rule for centuries.
The Jallianwala Bagh Hatyakand (Massacre): Quotes
- “1650 shots fired. Nation wounded forever.”
- “A hundred years of the bloody Baisakhi.”
- “Thousands died for the freedom of others. Salute to the Martyrs.”
- “Their bloodstains still scream, their helplessness still haunts, their sacrifice still honored. Salute to the martyrs.”
- “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
- “People can be cruel, but that doesn’t mean you have to take it home, wrap yourself up in it and wear it.” – Darlene Cates
- “It is hard to look the other way when a dictator is being so cruel and violent with his own people.” – Tammy Baldwin
- “No people in the history of the world have ever been so misunderstood, so misjudged, and so cruelly maligned.” – John Brown Gordon
New look of Jallianwala Bagh
The BJP led central government took renovation and development work to preserve and restore this historic site in 2019. The entrance to this museum, galleries or light shows that tell the whole story.
- The heart of Bagh, the flame monument, the Shaheedi fountain have been repaired and restored, and four museums are created.
- The body of water is renewed like a lily pond, and the lines have been widened for better navigation.
- The gallery displays a historical number of events unfolding in Punjab at the time, with a combination of audio and visual technologies, including map recording and 3D representation, as well as art and photographic inclusions.
- A ‘Sound and Light’ exhibition has been set up to show the events who the martyrs were and how they were killed by the English that took place on April 13, 1919.
Brig. Gen. Reginald Edward Harry Dyer Death Reason
It has been said that after this heinous crime General Dayer didn’t sleep peacefully for a second. Later he was paralysed. His health deteriorated day by day. On 23 July he died in Bristol.
Was The Real Purpose of Human Birth Fulfilled by Either Side?
The British government and its functionaries were engaged in maximization of wealth by hook or by crook. The Indian society was preparing to fight the foreign power to attain independence. Neither side had true knowledge about the real purpose of human life.
Sant Rampal Ji Maharaj says that just like the constant churning of the Persian wheel, ignorant souls seeking material success are constantly going up and down from heavens to the gallows, according to their karmic accounts. These karmic accounts cannot be canceled without taking refuge at the lotus feet of a True Tatvdarshi Sant. The Satguru has been gracing humans with rare spiritual knowledge. Only He can differentiate this world as an abode of sorrows with another world where there is no misery. That place is the Eternal Supreme Abode (Satyalok), and dwelling with the Immortal Supreme God confers the ocean of happiness. Learn true Eternal Knowledge by downloading Sant Rampal Ji Maharaj App.
FAQs About Jallianwala Bagh Massacre
The Jallianwala Bagh Massacre took place on 13 April 1919.
On October 14, 1919, the Hunter Commission was formed to inquire about the massacre. The Commission pointed out the massacre as one of the darkest episodes of the British Administration and recommended removal of Dyer from service in 1920.
General Dyer was the one who ordered the tragic massacre that happened on April 13, 1919, at Amritsar’s Jallianwala Bagh.
Soldiers from the Baluchi, Gorkha and Rajput regiments fired a little over 1,650 rounds and killed at least 379 people by official count, wounding perhaps a thousand more.
Neither side had true knowledge about the real purpose of human life. Only Sant Rampal Ji Maharaj tells right purpose of human birth and process to attain salvation.