The British PM Theresa May on Wednesday described Jallianwala Bagh massacre of 1919 as a ‘shameful scar’ on British Indian history.
In a meeting which marked the 100th anniversary of the massacre,she reiterated the British India has already showed regret over the matter and stopped appealing a formal apology.
In the historic Jallianwala Bagh massacre about 400 people lost their lives. The massacre took place in Amritsar on Baisakhi in April 1919 when the British Indian Army troops, under the command of Colonel Reginald Dyer, fired machine guns at a crowd of people holding a pro-independence demonstration.
“The tragedy of Jallianwala Bagh of 1919 is a shameful scar on British Indian history. As Her Majesty the Queen (Elizabeth II) said before visiting Jallianwala Bagh in 1997, it is a distressing example of our past history with India,” she said in her statement.
“We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused. I am pleased that today the UK-India relationship is one of collaboration, partnership, prosperity and security. Indian diaspora make an enormous contribution to British society and I am sure the whole House wishes to see the UK”s relationship with India continue to flourish,” she said.
In response, Opposition Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn demanded that those who lost their lives in the massacre deserve a “full, clear and unequivocal apology for what took place”.
The UK PM made her statement when British MP’s at Westminster Hall asked about the formal apology on Jallianwalah Bagh tragedy.
During a previous debate in the House of Lords earlier in the year, it was confirmed that UK foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt was “reflecting” on demands for a formal apology to mark the centenary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre this week.
Following Theresa May’s latest statement on the issue in the Commons, it remains to be seen if the UK government will follow up with any further statements in the lead up to the 100th anniversary on Saturday.