With deep sadness, the Central Committee of the Communist\ Ghadar Party of India mourns the passing away of Comrade Tarlochan Singh on April 22, 2014 in Calgary, Canada. He was 65 years of age.
Born in Punjab, Comrade Tarlochan immigrated to Canada in 1969 at the young age of 21. The town of Quesnel in British Columbia became his first Karam bhoomi. As Indian youth like Tarlochan migrated to Canada in the late sixties and early seventies in search of livelihood, they faced an extremely hostile, racist atmosphere wherever they lived or worked. `
The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) headed by Comrade Hardial Bains, led the struggle of the Canadian working class and people against the state organized racist attacks. In many cities and towns in Canada, inspired by the party and its leadership, the people boldly began to fight the racists, who had the full backing of the Canadian state. In Quesnel, Comrade Tarlochan, along with other comrades, boldly participated in the struggle against the racists from 1971 onwards. In those days, the racist gangs would insult and humiliate Indian women and men, physically attack them on the streets, and threaten them in all public places. The struggle waged by the comrades against the racists, inspired and united the entire community. Such struggles all across Canada created the conditions for the formation of the mass organization of the community, the East Indian Defence Committee (EIDC).
Comrade Tarlochan’s home was the center of the activity of the comrades leading the struggle against racist attacks in that area. In the winter, late November of 1973, one night, Comrades Tarlochan and Jasvir were sleeping after a hard day’s work in the saw mills. Suddenly they realized that they were unable to breathe. They went to check the thermostat but could not reach it, nor make it to the door, because of bilious clouds of smoke that engulfed the apartment. They had to make a quick getaway as the house was on fire. They broke the window glass and jumped out into the deep snow and bitter cold in the nick of time. There was a loud explosion, and the house went up in flames and was destroyed. The comrades saw a police car parked a little away. The police rather than coming forward to assist quietly made a U-turn and left the place. It was clear that the state had deliberately organized this fire.
Comrade Tarlochan’s house was targeted because the Canadian state knew that he was one of the many fighters who boldly fought back against all forms of racist attacks plotted and implemented with the full support of the Canadian state and which thought that it could quell the resistance of the East Indians abroad. The entire community met and condemned this attack in Quesnel and vowed to resolutely unite and fight the state organized racist attacks by strengthening their own defence organization, the EIDC.
We who had the privilege of working with him in those times recall how he was fully involved, whether it was against racist attacks, or taking widely the politics through distribution of party literature, or fighting against reactionary forces within the community. The main aim was to unite the community, and fight against racial attacks. It was not an easy task, and Cde. Tarlochan was one of those who was there ready always. He was full of life and energy and gave himself to the community and came to be known as a fighter for the cause of justice, against any form of discrimination.
Till his last breath, Comrade Tarlochan was a staunch defender of our Party, the Communist Ghadar Party of India. We will always cherish his memory. On this sad occasion, the CC of the CGPI sends it heartfelt condolences to his dear wife, to his children, to his brothers and all his extended family and friends.
General Secretary, CGPI