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Jallianwala Bagh massacre a 'shameful' act in British-Indian history: UK Envoy

Saturday marks 100 years of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, in which hundreds of Indians were killed after the British army opened fire during a protest.

Jallianwala Bagh massacre a 'shameful' act in British-Indian history: UK Envoy
Image Courtesy: Twitter/@ANI

Amritsar: British High Commissioner to India Sir Dominic Asquith, who laid a wreath at the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial in Amritsar on Saturday, said that the massacre is a "shameful act" in British-Indian history.

Saturday marks 100 years of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, in which hundreds of Indians were killed after the British army opened fire during a protest held there.

"The events of Jallianwala Bagh 100 years ago today reflects a shameful act in the British-Indian history. We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused. I am pleased today that the UK and India have and remain committed to developing further a thriving 21st century partnership," Asquith wrote in the visitors’ book at the memorial.

His statement comes days after British Prime Minister Theresa May described the massacre as a "shameful scar."

"The tragedy of Jallianwala Bagh of 1919 is a shameful scar on British Indian history. As Her Majesty the Queen (Elizabeth II) said before visiting Jallianwala Bagh in 1997, it is a distressing example of our past history with India," she said in her statement.

"We deeply regret what happened and the suffering caused. I am pleased that today the UK-India relationship is one of collaboration, partnership, prosperity and security. Indian diaspora make an enormous contribution to British society and I am sure the whole House wishes to see the UK's relationship with India continue to flourish," she added.

Hundreds of people holding candles and the national flag marched through Amritsar on the eve of the centenary.

President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also paid their tributes to the victims.

Rahul Gandhi, along with Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, reached Amritsar to pay tribute.

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu will attend the main function to commemorate the 100 years of the massacre.