An article in Guernica by Shubh Mathur tells the story behind last year’s murder-suicide in Selma, California, of Avtar Singh, who murdered his wife and three sons before turning his weapon on himself. Prior to his murderous act, Avtar Singh was being confronted about his dubious past as a major in the Indian army:
The story of his crimes and the manner in which he evaded justice for sixteen years is a grim chronicle of Indian crimes against humanity in Kashmir and of the silence of the international community which has abetted these.
From India’s Kashmir, to Canada, to Selma, California, the twists and turns of Avtar Singh’s international evasion from justice is a reflection of the impunity given to officers of the Indian state in committing grievous human rights abuses in Kashmir, Punjab, and other areas of India during 1980s, 1990s and beyond. It is a legacy that Sikhs around the world are still struggling with today.
Ensaaf, an organization dedicated to bringing justice for such state-sponsored crimes, recently held an art contest to bring more awareness to this issue. The winning artwork was unveiled in December, and the finalist art pieces have now also been presented on the Ensaaf Facebook page, which you can view here.