Mass murderer Gen. Dyer of Jalianwalla bagh fame and poor British India response

Jallianwalla Bagh. SlideShare

Gen. Reginald Dyer. Butcher of Jallianwalla bagh.Hindustan Times

Day before Yesterday 13 April 1919, 97 years ago when India was under the British Raj,  a maniac by the name of Gen. Reginald Dyer went amuck and committed the worst crime on the Indian soil at Jallianwalla Bagh, Amritsar. A premeditated massacre, rather a cold-blooded genocide was carried out under his direction and almost  all soldiers were Indians (drawn from various troops)  and Dyer had them direct firing  on a gathering of unarmed men, women and children at the Bagh. It was the day of Baisakhi, the main Sikh festival. The people including children and women were innocent and unarmed and gathered there to register their protest in a peaceful way. They never thought they would face hell soon. british India army marched up to the gate at the bagh.  Within 15 minutes of continuous shelling without any warning at the escaping crowd through the only  narrow gate more than 1000 people lost their lives, several hundreds seriously injures. As the wounded were denied any medical help or ambulance service, many bled to death. A total of 1650 bullets had been  fired at the panicked crowd.

Since the media censorship was on, the world, including Britain did not know the  gory details of  firing  and the enormity of crime  committed by Dyer with approval from the governor. However, the biased British media tried to create  an impression among the British public that the gathering at the bagh was in violation of the curlew imposed  by the government and they  were armed. More than 10,000 people had gathered at the Bagh that day.

The official figure was just 400. Mind you, 120 bodies  alone were pulled out from the well  inside the bagh.  The unofficial tally was more than 1000, besides shooting, a countless people died from stampedes or by suffocation from jumping into a solitary well inside the bagh to escape bullets.
When the massacre shook the conscience of the world, Dyer was removed from his command by the British government  and had to face an enquiry commission headed by 

bullet holes on the walls. todayinhistoryblog -
Lord William Hunter, the former Solicitor-General of Scotland and Senator of the College of Justice in Scotland.  Answering before the the Hunter Commission (November 1919) Dyer put the blame squarely on the gathering at the Bagh. He accused them of being rebels who were trying to isolate his forces and cut them off from supplies. Dyer said, “Therefore, I considered it my duty to fire on them and to fire well." About his refusal of medical attention to help the wounded, he said, “It was not my job. Hospitals were open and they could have gone there.” His shocking  comment that  if the gate were wide enough, he could have gotten in with the armored vehicles and possibly used the machine guns (against the gathering) showed his psychopathic mind.

Indian and world  leaders  were appalled by Dyer's reaction without any remorse and his irresponsible answers invited wide-spread condemnation in India. The commission’s interactions with Dyer have been documented in Nigel Collett’s book The Butcher of Amritsar: General Reginald Dyer published in 2006.

The Hunter Commission unfortunately did not take any disciplinary action on Dyer because of politico-legal limitations and further,  several senior officials  were in praise of Dyer, saying a rebellion like situation in Punjab  was nipped in the bed. A disgusting thing was a fringe group, in association with a local newspaper, gave him monetary award and a tile, "Saviour of British women". Besides, Dyer was lauded for his 'feat' and honored at the House of Lords in England. All these inhuman acts  accelerated the freedom movements in India as every patriotic Indian leader was quite furious about the irresponsible attitude of the British politicians. Ultimately India got her freedom and soon within a span of less than two decades the British colony fell one by one like nine pins on the Bowling Alley!!

Upon his return to his Army office on 13 April , General Reginald Dyer reported to his superiors that he had been "confronted by a revolutionary army".  Responding to a telegram sent to  Gen. Dyer, British Lieutenant-Governor of Punjab, Sir Michael O' Dwyer wrote: "Your action is correct"; an open approval  by Lieutenant Governor.  "To avenge the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, revolutionary Udham Singh killed Sir Michael Francis O'Dwyer, who was Lieutenant Governor of Punjab at that time, in London in 1940. Since O'Dwyer had called the massacre a "correct action", Uddam Singh considered the Punjab Governor his accomplice.

Dyer died in 1927 after suffering a series of strokes. Let us pray for those innocent people who, 97 years ago this month, were felled down by a psychopath in British military uniform at Jallianwalla Bagh.