US foils plot to kill Sikh separatist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on American soil, warns India over alleged links

US authorities have thwarted a plot to kill a Sikh separatist in the United States and issued a warning to India over concerns the government in New Delhi was involved, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday, citing unnamed sources.

There was no immediate response from India’s foreign ministry, or from the US embassy in New Delhi, to requests for comment on the report.

The Financial Times said that the sources did not say if the protest to India resulted in the plot being abandoned by the plotters, or if it was foiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

The protest to New Delhi was registered after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was welcomed on a state visit by President Joe Biden in June, the report said.

The report comes two months after Canada said there were “credible” allegations linking Indian agents to the June murder of a Sikh separatist leader, Hardeep Singh Nijjar, in a Vancouver suburb.

India has rejected Canada’s accusations.

‘Watch your back’: Sikh diaspora fears for safety after killing of separatist

Apart from the diplomatic warning to India, US federal prosecutors have also filed a sealed indictment against at least one suspect in a New York District Court, the FT report said.

The paper identified Gurpatwant Singh Pannun as the target of the foiled plot.

The FT report said Pannun had declined to say whether US authorities had warned him about the plot, but quoted him as saying he would “let the US government respond to the issue of threats to my life on American soil from the Indian operatives”.

Pannun, like Nijjar, is a proponent of a decades-long, but now a fringe demand to carve out an independent Sikh homeland from India named Khalistan.

Canada worked very closely with the United States on intelligence that Indian agents had been potentially involved in Nijjar’s murder, a senior Canadian government source said in September.


India’s Sikhs worry about the future as row with Canada escalates

India’s Sikhs worry about the future as row with Canada escalates

The FT report mentioned that the US shared details of the thwarted plot with a wider group of allies after Canada’s public accusation.

Also on Wednesday, India resumed issuing e-visas for Canadian tourists and business travellers two months after it suspended such services following the row over Nijjar’s killing.

Though the move is likely to ease tensions slightly, relations between the two countries are not expected to significantly improve in the near future.

“E-visa services to Canadian nationals have resumed,” an Indian government official aware of the decision said on the condition of anonymity, as he was not authorised to speak on the subject.

Canada warns India to treat Sikh slaying allegation seriously

The official did not say if the decision will lead to a significant thaw in the relationship with Ottawa.

India issues e-visas only for tourism and business for Canadian nationals.

It comes a month after New Delhi had resumed visas under four of the 13 categories that had been suspended in September.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button