New Delhi, India: Twenty-five years after thousands of Sikhs lost their lives in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, families of the victims have taken solace in nature. To commemorate the 25th anniversary of the carnage, hundreds of Sikhs planted over 250 saplings around the Karkardooma court complex on Saturday.
Gathered in large numbers outside the court complex, where the hearing of one of the riot-related cases was going one, people planted saplings as a life-affirming gesture to humankind. Amid heavy police presence to avert any tension during the hearing many families quietly planted trees in memory of their loved ones.
Gurdeep Singh, one of the volunteers, said that by going back to nature, he wanted to spread the message of love and harmony. “I lost two members of my family in the carnage and the pain of losing someone you love is immense. By planting a tree in their remembrance, I am also contributing to nature,” he said.
The cause initiated by Gyan Sewa Trust and Sant Baba Sewa Singh Ji, Panjab, witnessed the participation of various other independent Sikh organizations. The tree plantation drive, according to H S Phoolka, senior lawyer and chairman of Gyan Sewa Trust, was a way to connect with people for a common cause. “With increasing global warming and depleting greenery in Delhi, we feel it is absolutely important to undertake such campaigns and to connect with people on issues that have an emotional appeal,” Phoolka said.
Around 1,000 saplings have already been planted in south Delhi in the drive that started on July 27. “We have a target of planting 25,000 trees across the city by November, which will mark 25 years since the tragedy took place,” Phoolka added.
And the drive does not end here. The planted trees will be maintained by the organizations for one year across the city.
Source: Smriti Singh, TOI