Insurgency in Punjab
The Insurgency in Punjab that started in the early 1980s, was an armed campaign against the government of India by a Sikh nationalist movement called the Khalistan movement. In the 1980s, the movement had developed into a secessionist movement. The Green Revolution brought several social and economic changes which, along with factionalism of the politics, in the Punjab state increased tension between rural Sikhs in Punjab with the union Government of India. Pakistani strategists then began supporting the militant dimension of the Khalistan movement.In the 1972 Punjab state elections, Congress won and Akali Dal was defeated. In 1973, Akali Dal put forward the Anandpur Sahib Resolution to demand more autonomic powers to the state of Punjab. The Congress government considered the resolution a secessionist document and rejected it. Bhindranwale then joined the Akali Dal to launch the Dharam Yudh Morcha in 1982, to implement Anandpur Sahib resolution. Bhindranwale had risen to prominence in the Sikh political circle with his policy of getting the Anandpur Resolution passed, failing which he wanted to declare a autonomous reigion of Punjab as a homeland for Sikhs.Bhindranwale symbolized the heroism and patriotism in the 1980s in Punjab. He is credited with launching the Sikh militancy in Punjab, with training and support from the spy agency ISI of Pakistan. Under Bhindranwale, the number of people initiating into the Khalsa increased. He also increased the level of rhetoric on the perceived "assault" on Sikh values from the Hindu community as the Brahmins want to influence Sikhism and remove its individuality. Bhindranwale and his followers started carrying firearms at all times. Although, they only used them for self defense. In 1983, to escape arrest, he along with his militant followers occupied and fortified the Sikh shrine Akal Takht. He made the Sikh religious building his headquarters and led a campaign for autonomy in Punjab with the strong backing of Major General Shabeg Singh. They then took refuge in the Golden Temple.On the 1st of June 1984, Operation Blue Star was launched to remove him and the armed militants from the Golden Temple complex. On 6th June, on Guru Arjan Dev ji's Martyrdom Day, Bhindranwale was killed by the Indian military in the operation. The operation carried out in the Gurudwara caused outrage among the Sikhs and increased the support for Khalistan Movement. Four months after the operation, on 31 October 1984, Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi was assassinated in vengeance by her two bodyguards, Satwant Singh and Beant Singh. Public outcry over Gandhi's death led to the slaughter of Sikhs in the ensuing 1984 Sikh Massacre. These events played a major role in the violence by Sikh militant groups supported by Pakistan and consumed Punjab until the early 1990s when the Khalistan movement eventually slowed down.The extremist violence had started with targeting of the Nirankaris and followed by attack on the government machinery and the Indians. Ultimately the Sikh militants also targeted other Sikhs with opposing viewpoints. This led to further loss of public support and the militants were eventually brought under control of law enforcement agencies by 1993. Some group are still around.