The City of Surrey unveiled the new Komagata Maru Way signs July 31 that will be installed on 75A Avenue between 120th Street and 121A Street. From left: Raj Toor, who’s been pushing the city to commemorate the victims, Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum and councillors Laurie Guerra and Mandeep Nagra. (Photo: City of Surrey)

The City of Surrey unveiled the new Komagata Maru Way signs July 31 that will be installed on 75A Avenue between 120th Street and 121A Street. From left: Raj Toor, who’s been pushing the city to commemorate the victims, Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum and councillors Laurie Guerra and Mandeep Nagra. (Photo: City of Surrey)

Surrey unveils Komagata Maru Way signs

Street sign will honour the victims of the 1914 incident

New commemorative street signs in Surrey will honour the victims of the 1914 Komagata Maru incident.

The city unveiled the new signs Wednesday (July 31) that are to be installed on 75A Avenue between 120th Street and 121A Street.

“Today, council put into action what we approved a little over three weeks ago to name a Surrey street to remember the victims of the Komagata Maru incident,” said Mayor Doug McCallum at the unveiling.

“Komagata Maru Way is proof that the citizens of Surrey will not forget the injustices of the past and that we are a city that welcomes and embraces people from all over the world.”

READ ALSO: Surrey council approves renaming a street to commemorate Komagata Maru victims, July 6, 2019

Surrey council voted in favour of installing the commemorative street name signs during its July 8 meeting.

As well, city council voted in favour of other staff recommendations – identified by the Surrey Heritage Advisory Commission during its May meeting – which called for a research project on South Asians in Surrey, a heritage storyboard and for the city continue to offer programming that “shares the culture, history and contributions of South Asian residents in Surrey.”

Raj Toor, whose grandfather came to Canada on the Komagata Maru, along with the Descendants of the Komagata Maru Society, had been pushing for the City of Surrey to rename a street in honour of the passengers.

READ ALSO: Descendants of Komagata Maru Society looks to have Surrey street renamed, Jan. 8, 2019

Toor previously told the Now-Leader he thought Surrey would be a good fit to memorialize the passengers because the city has such a large South Asian community.

Toor was part of the unveiling on Wednesday and he said while the past can’t be undone, people can now move forward and “leave a legacy for the future generation by educating them about the past.”

“Places like this Komagata Maru Way and storyboard in Nicholson Park will educate the entire community and make us all richer in awareness of how special a place Canada is to have so many different ethnic communities living together. And with this knowledge we can build a better world free from racism.”

The research project, according to a city report, would include hiring a researcher to “provide an in-depth research service to produce a legacy document, which thoroughly documents South Asian history in Surrey” and will “fill a significant gap in the existing historical record.”

The heritage storyboard would provide an overview of the Komagata Maru incident and the reverberations the event has for many Surrey residents today. It would be installed at R.A. Nicholson Park, which is just east of an existing Komagata Maru mural.

The report says the interpretive panel would be installed following the completion of the research project.

In 1914, the Komagata Maru arrived in Vancouver from Hong Kong, carrying 376 passengers. Most of the passengers were immigrants from the Punjab region in what was then British India.

The hundreds of passengers were not allowed on shore.

For two months, they remained in the waters outside of Vancouver before being forced to return to India.

But upon their return, some of the passengers were shot and killed “in an encounter with British Indian police,” according to the canadianencyclopedia.ca.



lauren.collins@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Lauren on Twitter

 

The City of Surrey unveiled the new Komagata Maru Way signs July 31 that will be installed on 75A Avenue between 120th Street and 121A Street. (Photo: City of Surrey)

The City of Surrey unveiled the new Komagata Maru Way signs July 31 that will be installed on 75A Avenue between 120th Street and 121A Street. (Photo: City of Surrey)

Just Posted

Councillor Doug Elford. (File photo: Amy Reid)
Elford to join Surrey Homelessness and Housing Society as a director

Fellow Safe Surrey Coalition Councillors Laurie Guerra, Mandeep Nagra and Allison Patton will be re-appointed to the board

(Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Surrey council moves to reduce parking along rapid transit corridors

This also targets rental housing developments in Rapid Transit Areas

Big Splash water park is located in Tsawwassen. (submitted photo)
Big Splash reopens Canada Day with changes to keep the water park ‘safe for everyone’

Executive Hotels & Resorts has owned and operated the attraction since 2017

A cyclist stops traffic to allow a gaggle of geese cross the road. (Tino Fluckiger photo)
White Rock man asks motorists to be mindful of wildlife after close call

Impatient motorists drives into oncoming traffic

West Coast Duty Free president Gary Holowaychuk stands next to empty shelves inside his store on Tuesday (June 15). (Aaron Hinks photo)
Revenue down 97% at South Surrey duty free as owner waits for U.S. border to reopen

Products approaching best before dates had to be donated, others destroyed

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Most Read