The assassination of Amar Chamkila


The truth behind the assassination of Punjab’s explicit singer, Amar Chamkila and his co-singer, Amarjot. Recently, Punjabi singer Surinder Shinda gave an interview, in which he touched on the death of Amar Chamkila and made some very untruthful comments which painted a very distorted picture of what actually happened. He went as far as making fabricated claims to malign the Khalistan Freedom movement and the Jhujaru Singhs.


Many years ago, I had already written about this very encounter and how the story into Amar Chamkila’s assassination actually unfolded. Unfortunately, you will always get individuals such as Surinder Shinda causing controversy and misinforming the people of the actual truth. It was back in 1987, that a prominent Chief General of the Sikh nation and the leader of Khalistan Commando Force General Labh Singh and the President of Sikh Student Federation, Bhai Gurjit Singh Harihar Jhok mutually agreed to set up a Smaj Sudhar Lehar (a social reform/restore movement).


The Smaj Sudhar would encourage/implement the following:


  • A ban of dowry at weddings.
  • Keep the guests to a minimum at weddings (Bharat).
  • To not serve non-veg food and alcohol at weddings. This would prevent disgraceful behaviour at weddings, and stop the groom side creating a havoc at the bride’s house.
  • The brides that were sent back to their parents home due to not giving groom certain dowry, were rehoused back with their husbands abolishing any kind of demands from the groom’s family.
  • There was also the added influence of singers who had begun to use sexual content in their lyrics which went against Punjabi community and cultural ethos, poisoning the psyche of the next generations and causing a negative influence.
  • Barbers were asked to stop the cutting the beards and hair of the Sikh youth.


There were eleven branches of the Smaj Sudhar Lehar under the umbrella of the Khalistan Commando Force, General Labh Singh and Lieutenant General Bhai Harjinder Singh Jinda. This initiative was spread across the whole of Punjab and all the Jhujaru groups were in support.


One such culprit who was polluting Punjab with his vulgar music was Amar Chamkila and his team. He was the most popular of his time and succeeded in leading the youth astray with his vulgar and derogatory music. The Singhs had warned him three times to back-track from singing such damaging songs and promote clean music. However, these warnings did not deter him. Rather, whilst on a tour in Canada, he claimed that he had paid-off the Jhujaru Singhs, who in turn said he could sing whatever he wants, however much he wants.


This baseless rumour led him straight into the path of the Jhujaru Singhs who had now run out of mercy. This information was shared by Bhai Gurjit Singh Harihar Jhok at Guru Nanak Engineering College Ludhiana hostels, Room number 62. A total of 7 of Jhujaru Singhs were gathered for this meeting. Bhai Gurjit Singh then said he has connections and friends in Canada, who he could ask for more background information to prove these claims.


A follow up meeting was held four days later in which a total of 19 Jhujaru Singhs were present. Bhai Gurjit Singh had carried out his full enquiries and confirmed that Amar Chamkila did in fact make those false claims and rumours. So, on this day the Jhujaru Singha made the decision that justice will be served on him. Three days later, Bhai Lovshinder Singh Dalewal, Bhai Gurdeep Singh Deepa had made full preparations and went to Amar Chamkila’s office in Ludhiana. But he was not there to. There was just one clerk sat at the desk of the office.


It is also worth mentioning that it had only been 2 weeks since Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal had escaped from Goraya police station where he was kept for one month without charges.


Bhai Satpal Singh suggested that the Jhujaru Singhs go together to a conference arranged by Sikh Student Federation in Moga. At the end of the conference, approximately 10/12 singers such as Kuldeep Manak, Mohammad Sadiq, brought along their newly written lyrics/songs and requested the Jhujaru Singhs to censor and approve them.


Prior to any conversation or dialogue, Bhai Satpal Singh Dhillon said the following:

“It is simple and straight forward, if you can sit amongst your mothers and sisters and sing these lyrics without repercussion then these songs are justified. Those songs which you cannot sing in front of family members, well, those are prohibited and should not be allowed. It is not plausible nor do we have time to sit here and read your lyrics every time.” With this said, the Jhujaru Singhs went on their way and so did the singers.


It was on the 8th March 1988, in the afternoon, when three Jhujaru Singhs who had dedicated their lives to the movement; initiated by the son of Dhan Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji Maharaj, a 20th century revered Shaheed – Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Khalsa Bhindranwale; went on their way to send Amar Chamkila on a one-way ticket to hell. An open-air event was arranged at a village Mehsampur, near Nakodar, district Jalandhar by a family who were celebrating a wedding and had just received blessings from Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj by holding a Sri Akhand Paath Sahib. Amar Chamkila was scheduled to sing here after the religious program.


Once the family had completed all formalities and took Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj back to their local village Gurdwara, Bhai Gurdeep Singh Deepa asked the family, “What was the need to now arrange this and invite Amar Chamkila? it is risky, what if those terrorists (sarcastically referring to Jhujaru Singhs) come here, it could become very dangerous!” The family responded with great surety, “Nothing will happen, do not worry. Amar Chamkila’s team has arrived, you all get ready to enjoy the music.”


At this time, Amar Chamkila and his team were busy having refreshments.  They then proceeded to make their way to the stage out in the open fields, by car. Four of the six-member team sat in the car, Amar Chamkila, female singer Amarjot and two other instrumentalists. The other two went by foot.


Bhai Gurnek Singh Neka alias Baba Hari Singh indicated they would let the two on foot go, in order to execute a successful plan. As the car began its travel out to the stage area down a village road, the Singhs too jumped onto their scooter and followed up towards the car. Bhai Gurdeep Singh Deepa approached one side of the car, while Bhai Sukhdev Singh Sodhi approached the other side. Bhai Gurnek Singh went straight towards the stage area.


As the car approached the stage Amarjot was seen to reach into her handbag for a mirror and began to check her make up. The team then exited the car, upon doing so the two Singhs either side took our their AK47 assault rifles and showered Amar Chamkila and his team with a rainfall of bullets.


At roughly 2pm, Amar Chamkila, Amarjot and two other members of their party were riddled with bullets. Bhai Gurnek Singh Neka had his AK47 assault rifle in one hand and went onto the stage. He sarcastically began telling the crowd not to leave, “Where are you all going? Sit down, get comfortable, we are yet to dance and do Bhangra. Please enjoy yourselves before leaving like this!” Bhai Gurnek Singh Neka’s message was a clear one, that today’s vulgar music was having a negative influence on the youth of Punjab and the Jhujaru Singhs will not sit back and do nothing. On one hand the Indian government is oppressing and strangling Sikhs from their neck. Then on the other hand, our very own Sikhs are encouraging this damage upon our youth and culture. The crowds were in such hysterics trying to find a way out, that no one stayed to listen to what the Jhujaru Singhs had to say. The crowds ran away through nearby wheat fields, damaging the crop.


Bhai Gurdeep Singh Deepa, Bhai Sukhdev Singh Sodhi and Bhai Gurnek Singh Neka calmly made their way out of the village on their scooter. Other Jhujaru Singhs, Bhai Gurdev Singh Dev Rukra and Bhai Paramjit Singh Bir Pind were also present during this entire time with their assault rifles and ready on their scooter, should their assistance had been needed. Such was the smooth execution of the plan that their intervention was not needed. The following day, Bhai Gurnek Singh Neka alias Baba Hari Singh claimed full responsibility for the killing and sent a clear message to the Punjabi singers to refrain from singing damaging and derogatory songs. This had the impact intended and the singers were fearful of not making such a mistake.


Adding a final thought, there was also an episode prior to all this, where a singer mentioned the following line in his song, “Forget all else, as long as you have a clean heart you are good.” In response to this, Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Khalsa Bhindranwale proclaimed, “Oi you who wears earrings, listen here. If I ask you to drink milk from a glass that is smothered with cow dung on the outside, would you drink it? If you have the courage to do so, then feel free to keep singing your song. But until you don’t, do not dare to repeat these words again, for then you must remember the consequences.


Then we have Gurdas Mann who had a clear affiliation with KPS Gill, who murdered thousands upon thousands of Sikhs. Once this association became public, fearing his life, Gurdas Mann fled Punjab and relocated in Mumbai. Today, due to the demise of the Sikh struggle, the level of derogatory songs has surpassed any tolerable standards.


There is now a real need for a rebirth of such Jhujaru Singhs, who served punishment to Amar Chamkila. These lustful singers need to realise that nothing lasts forever and their time will also come if they do not clean up their act.


Information given by Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal