Sydney, 25th September, 2016
In a sombre ceremony on 25 September, Indian community in Sydney offered condolences for the martyrs of Uri Terror attack.
Approximately 100 prominent members of Indian Australian community met in The Dezire Function Centre in Blacktown, NSW today to offer tribute to the 18 Indian army soldiers who were slain in Uri town of Jammu and Kashmir by heavily-armed terrorists in the early morning of 18 September, 2016.
A video (prepared by Dimple Deez of Desi Australia) was shown, describing the Uri terror attack and names as well as the details of the slain martyrs. Indian national anthem was sung with patriotism and enthusiasm.
Flowers were offered and brief speeches were given, condoling the killings and expressing solidarity with India and Indian army. Terrorism which India suffers from across the borders was condemned in strongest possible words. It was made clear that our issues are with Pakistan’s support and use of terror groups, not with Pakistani Australian community with which we have good relations.
Indian Consulate in Sydney was represented by Mr S. K. Verma, Consul, Community Welfare.
Speakers were clear in their condemnation of Jihadi (Terror) groups which are allowed to operate from Pakistan and hit targets inside India. They asked India and the world to take a serious note of the situation and work together to deal with these terror groups and their patronage in the region. Capt Sarjinder Singh Sandhu of Australian Sikh Association and Raj Singh spoke from their personnel experiences as they have significant Indian army connections. Akila Ramarathinam, Ajay Khanna, Dave Passi, Pravin Gupta (whose partner read out a poem for the slain martyrs and their families), Logessan Pillay, Dr Shailja Chandra, Ashok Kumar and Harmohan Walia were some of the speakers.
After a brief speech about the Uri terror attack, Dr Yadu Singh conducted the event ably and efficiently.
It was also noted that none of the “Intolerance” brigade which made a song and dance about so-called “intolerance” in India a few months ago has said a single word against terrorism coming from Pakistan.
There was a unanimous support for asking Pakistani actors and singers to leave India since they too have not condemned the terror attack. People did not feel there is any purpose to have sports relations either when India keeps getting hit by terrorists from Pakistan.
The choices are clear for Pakistan. We either choose good relations or terror.
Gratitude was expressed profusely for Indian defence personnel’ services and sacrifices at the borders.
Many volunteered to offer financial contributions for the welfare of Indian defence personnel but noted with gratitude that Central and State governments have already offered generous support to the families of the slain martyrs.
Slogans of Jai Hind & Hindustan Zindabad were raised with fervour and patriotism.
Dr Yadu Singh
President, Federation of Indian Associations of NSW