AS the 100th anniversary of the Komagata Maru tragedy approaches, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair rose in the House on Thursday and opened question period by demanding that the government apologize in the House of Commons on behalf of the Government of Canada.
Mulcair said: “Mr. Speaker, 100 years ago, 340 Sikhs, 24 Muslims and 12 Hindus from India set across the Pacific looking to build a better life in Canada. After seven weeks of arduous journey, they arrived in Vancouver. After two months of near starvation in harbor, they were forced to return at gunpoint.
“When they arrived back in India, many were arrested, imprisoned, or killed. The Komagata Maru stands as a severe stain on Canada’s history. Why, 100 years later, does the Government of Canada still refuse to apologize for the Komagata Maru?
“May 23 will mark the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the Komagata Maru into Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet. Due to the discriminatory continuous journey regulation, passengers were prevented from disembarking and were denied basic necessities such as food and water.”
Mr. Mulcair’s question may be viewed at: