THE City of Vancouver has proclaimed May 23, 2022 as “Komagata Maru Day of Remembrance.”
On Tuesday, Vancouver City Council invited brothers Raj Singh Toor and Jaswinder Toor of the Descendants of the Komagata Maru to read the proclamation and present it to them.
The proclamation notes that “2022 marks the 108th Anniversary of the Komagata Maru incident, a dark chapter in Canadian history where a ship carrying 376 British subjects from India including 340 Sikhs, 24 Muslims and 12 Hindus arrived in Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet on May 23, 1914, seeking entry into Canada with hopes of a brighter future.”
It points out that on June 29, 1914, Vancouver City Council supported Canada’s “racist and discriminatory laws” by passing a resolution that stated it was “unalterably opposed to the admittance of Hindus and other Asiatic races in this country.”
The proclamation states that “on July 23, 1914, the Komagata Maru was forced to sail back to India where those on board were labelled as political disruptors and 19 passengers were shot and killed by British Indian troops, numerous were injured, and many were jailed for years.”
It notes that “on May 23, 2021, Vancouver City Council officially apologized to the victims, their descendants and all those impacted for Vancouver City Council’s June 29, 1914 resolution and the cruel effects it had on the individuals and the families affected.”
Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart on behalf of the Council proclaimed May 23, 2022, as “Komagata Maru Day of Remembrance.”
The City of Vancouver will also illuminate Vancouver City Hall and Burrard Bridge in orange colour on Monday, May 23.