India today called on the world to act against not only terrorists but also harbourers of terrorism, days after the suicide bombing at a concert arena in Manchester killed 22 people. “The world needs to act not only against terrorists but also supporters, harbourers and apologists for terrorism,” Indian High Commissioner to the UK Yashvardhan Kumar Sinha said after Indian mission staff and hundreds of community leaders and schoolchildren joined in the UK-wide one-minute silence in memory of the victims of Monday night’s terror attack in Manchester.
The suicide bombing in the Arena killed 22 people and injured 119. Sixty four injured still remain hospitalised.
The Indian envoy was addressing an event titled ‘The Unremembered: The Indian Story’ in the city of Leicester to mark the centenary of the Labour Corp and bring a special focus on the courage and contribution of the Indian Labour Corps during World War I.
A simultaneous event was held at the India Gate in New Delhi, where the names of the 1,174 Indian labourers in the war have been engraved. “The architect of the India Gate – India’s memorial to 13,281 dead of World War One – was designed by Edwin Lutyens. It is little known beyond Leicester that Lutyens built an almost identical monument as a local war memorial to 12,000 Leicestershire men who died in World War I using an almost identical design,” an official statement said.
The memorial, which is called the Arch of Remembrance, is in Leicester’s Victoria Park. The monument was used to evoke the memory of the Indians commemorated at the India Gate, with the high commissioner laying a wreath of marigolds.
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“Thousands of workers supported the war effort from around the world. Many faced racism and discrimination. They served with courage but they have been almost completely forgotten. They are ‘The Unremembered’,” said the UK’s Department for Communities and Local Government backed project team.
Following the commemoration, children from local schools and community groups in Leicester took part in a series of activities, including creative writing, planting marigolds and visits to the 18 British war graves at Welford Road Cemetery, which had served as a World War One field hospital.