OTTAWA: A powerful and visually engaging exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of the voyage of the Komagata Maru and exploring the contributions of Sikh immigrants to Canada will soon be displayed across the country, thanks to support from the Government of Canada.
Tim Uppal, Minister of State (Multiculturalism), announced Inter-Action funding of up to $89,500 (around Rs 45 lakh) for the Sikh Heritage Museum of Canada (SHMC) to create the “Lions of the Sea” exhibit.
The national exhibition with original artifacts made available by the SHMC will travel across Canada, bringing the story of the Komagata Maru to life and allowing Canadians from coast to coast to learn about its historical significance.
Once completed, this exhibition will be made available to schools, libraries and places of worship across Canada.
The Komagata Maru arrived in Vancouver harbour in 1914 carrying 376 passengers of Indian descent, most of whom were not allowed to land. This was because the ship did not make a direct journey to Canada, as prescribed by Canada’s Continuous Journeys clause, which was in place at the time. After two months under difficult conditions, the ship and most of its passengers were forced to return to India where, in a subsequent clash with British soldiers, 19 passengers died.