Aftermath and Assassination
In the aftermath of Operation Bluestar, a number of Sikh soldiers resigned from the Indian Army. In some areas, there were actual battles between those resigning and those still loyal to the army.On October 31, 1984, Indira Gandhi walked out to the garden behind her official residence for an interview with a British journalist. As she passed two of her Sikh bodyguards, they drew their service weapons and opened fire. Beant Singh shot her three times with a pistol, while Satwant Singh fired thirty times with a self loading rifle. Both men then calmly dropped their weapons and surrendered.
Indira Gandhi died that afternoon after undergoing surgery. Beant Singh was shot dead while under arrest, Satwant Singh and alleged conspirator Kehar Singh were later hanged.When news of the Prime Ministers death was broadcast, mobs of Hindus across northern India went on a rampage. In the Anti Sikh Riots, which lasted for four days, anywhere from 3,000 to 20,000 Sikhs were murdered, many of them burned alive. The violence was particularly bad in Haryana state. Because the Indian government was slow to respond to the pogrom, support for the Sikh separatist Khalistan movement increased markedly in the months following the massacre.