|Gadar means mutiny, or revolution. In 1913, when the Gadar Party was formed in Oregon, it was intended as an armed struggle to overthrow the British who were ruling India. Through their mouthpiece, the Gadar newspaper, they made their intentions clear. The British was their enemy and their goal was a United States of India.
But it was never going to be easy to take on the force of an empire on which, it was said, the sun never set. Yet, daring and conviction can make ordinary men attempt the extraordinary. That is what happened during the brief Gadar movement. Nearly 8,000 overseas Indians, mostly living in the USA and Canada, but also drawn from British Army units around the world, joined the movement.
The majority were Sikhs who had migrated to Canada and to the USA against heavy odds and after defying unfavorable immigration policies. Although discriminated by white Americans, the Sikhs had built up a reputation for hard, unmitigated labor. Through the money they earned, they bought up large tracts of farmland and other business which they were later able to sell and fund the Gadar movement. They were true heroes, their patriotism unmatched. They staked their lives so that India could break free, breath the sweet air of freedom.
|Every diaspora is connected by the proverbial umbilical cord with its motherland. So too is the Indian Diaspora that has, in the 21st century, intensified its engagements with India. Spread over a 100 nations globally, and connecting regularly with its roots in one form or another, the Indian Diaspora, 28 million strong, is largely responsible for India’s growing clout in the world scene. In many ways, the men and women of the Indian diaspora are unofficial ambassadors of India, for what they showcase becomes a cornerstone for opinion building on India. This book talks about how the diaspora has fared, and the key issues it has raised, through the eyes of one of the most respected diaspora organizations in the world—the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO). The book also profiles some leading GOPIO members, and the chapters that the organization has established worldwide. Also featured are some Little Indias across the world.