Carleton University’s Canada-India Centre for Excellence is pleased to announce the opening of an art exhibition to commemorate the events around the Komagata Maru incident. The opening ceremony will be held on May 18, 2016 at 4 p.m.
When: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 4 p.m.
Where: MacOdrum Library, Carleton University, 1125 Colonel By Drive
Komagata Maru was a Japanese ship that arrived in Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet on May 23, 1914. It was chartered from Hong Kong by Indian citizen Gurdit Singh and carried 376 Indian passengers, mostly Punjabi Sikhs.
They expected a warm welcome in Canada, a British colony like India at the time. Instead, they were imprisoned in their ship for two months, deprived of food and water and sent back to India. When they reached the port of Budge Budge Ghat near Calcutta, the British-Indian government suspected they had turned revolutionaries which lead to a struggle with police that killed 19 passengers and injured many more. The incident has become a symbol of struggle against injustice and continues to inspire efforts against racism.
The paintings in this exhibition show a quest for truth and justice by depicting the struggle of Komagata Maru passengers. They are part of a full series of 21 paintings included in the large format book A Journey with the Endless Eye. The book includes stories by Ajmer Rode and paintings by Jarnail Singh.
Members of Indo-Canadian community will attend the event to give interviews to media about their heritage and the significance of the prime minister’s apology to them, especially from the Sikh and Punjabi communities. Centre board member Barj Dhahan, artist Jarnail Singh and author, Ajmer Rode will also be available to speak to media.
More information about this event is available here.