National Press Club

Human Rights in India

May 28, 1991

About This Video

Run time: 58 minutes

Dr. Aulakh, a research scientist in the field of DNA, spoke at the National Press Club on the discrimination against Sikhs in India. Dr. Aulakh is president of the Council of Khalistan, a part of India formerly known as Punjab whose population is made up mainly of Sikhs. Khalistan seeks independence from India and the Indian government policies that affect its population. Dr. Aulakh described the history of the Sikhs, who had been recognized as a sovereign nation before the British conquest in the 19th century. He said the Sikhs joined the Hindus upon Indian independence in 1947 with the assurance no Indian constitution would be written without a clause enabling the Sikhs to create their own nation. However, India went against Sikh demands in ratifying their constitution without an independent Sikh country included. Presently, 20 to 36 people die every day die in Indian-Sikh conflicts. Dr. Aulakh called for immediate release of all Sikh prisoners in Indian prisons and negotiations for the independence of Khalistan. He criticized the government of recently assassinated Rajiv Ghandi for failing to prevent mass murders of thousands of Sikhs.