100 years of Jallianwala Bagh: Exhibition displaying secret British documents to open in Pakistan

On the 100th anniversary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, people light candles at the memorial in Amritsar. (Express photo: Gurmeet Singh)

Marking the 100th anniversary of the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre of Amritsar (1919), an exhibition displaying secret official documents related to the massacre will open at Lahore in Pakistan Saturday.

The exhibition titled ‘100 Years of the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre & Martial Law in Punjab- The Official Records Speak Themselves’ is being organised by government of Punjab in Pakistan to mark the centenary of the massacre in which at least 379 were killed (official count) and hundreds injured as British troops had opened fire at peaceful protesters at Jallianwala Bagh of Amritsar on April 13, 1919.

The documents will be displayed by the archives department of Punjab government at City Heritage Museum at The Mall Lahore.

Imtiaz Rashid Qureshi, Chairman of Bhagat Singh Memorial Foundation, Pakistan, said that a written request was made by their organisation to Prime Minister Imran Khan to display documents in possession of Pakistan related to the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre.

"We have still not forgotten and can never forget what British rulers did that day. It was ruthless butchering of innocent people to say the least. We had made a written appeal to PM Imran Khan to display documents which are with Pakistan so that the Britishers stand exposed for the conspiracy they weaved. Now, government of Punjab has agreed to put those documents on display for people to see," he said.

"These are documents which are only in possession of Pakistan, not India," he claimed.

Muhammad Arfeen Awan, deputy director (archives), government of Punjab, said that these official records available with their archives department have not been put on display before.

On April 13, India observed 100th anniversary of the massacre amid political slugfest between the centre and state government. While CM Captain Amarinder Singh paid separate tributes with Congress party president Rahul Gandhi, the central government programme was attended by vice-president Venkaiah Naidu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi later targeted Captain for his absence from the official central government programme and politicising the event due to party politics.