Small but vocal Sikh groups overseas keep embers of ‘Khalistan’ burning


NEW DELHI: The Khalistan motion continues to evoke a stage of sympathy from some Sikhs, notably in Canada, the UK, and Australia.

The Khalistan motion is outlawed in India and regarded a critical nationwide safety risk by the federal government — quite a lot of teams related to the motion are listed as “terrorist organizations” below India’s Illegal Actions (Prevention) Act.

Indian consulates in the UK and the US have been vandalized by Amritpal Singh’s supporters who tore down the Indian flag, changing it with the Khalistan emblem. Protests additionally broke out in Canada because the police seek for him continues, CNN reported.

Canada, the US, Australia, and the UK are dwelling to sizeable Sikh communities, a lot of whom left Punjab following Independence looking for higher financial alternatives.

A small however influential variety of these Sikhs help the concept of ​​Khalistan, with referendums held periodically to succeed in a consensus to determine a separate homeland inside India, CNN reported.

Vested pursuits, together with from Pakistan and West-based components, notably from US, UK and Canada have been consistently attempting to maintain the Khalistan motion simmering by offering funding/logistic help to such components, as per an article in Indian Defense Overview.

With Jagjit Singh Chohan, the previous Finance Minister of Punjab within the Nineteen Sixties, rising because the founding father of the Khalistan motion, the demand for a separate Khalistan reached its peak throughout the Eighties after originating within the Nineteen Seventies. Jagjit Singh initiated (Nankana Sahib, 1971) the establishing of a Sikh authorities in Pakistan and subsequently visited the US, and picked up thousands and thousands of {dollars} there for forming Khalistan. He supported Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, one other radical in India preventing for an impartial Khalistan. Bhindranwale’s violent marketing campaign, supported by the Pak ISI, posed nationwide safety threats to India within the Eighties, the article mentioned.

Submit-2015 there was an increase in makes an attempt to revive militancy in Punjab, with a lot of the perpetrators based mostly in Pakistan/western international locations. It additionally famous that the diaspora within the US, Canada, UK and different European international locations have been additionally channeling funds and radicalising the youth in Punjab, it added.

Distinguished Khalistan terrorists lively from varied overseas international locations embrace Germany-based Gurmeet Singh Bagga and Bhupinder Singh Bhinda of the Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF); Lahore-based KZF chief Ranjeet Singh Neeta, BKI chief Wadhawa Singh Babbar and KCF chief Paramjit Singh Panjwar, all based mostly in Lahore; Vancouver-based Hardeep Singh Nijjar and New York-based founding father of ‘Sikhs for Justice’ (SFJ)’s Gurpatwant Singh Pannu.

“The year 2023 is proving to be challenging for the Indian political leadership. However, it is about parroting the same old tale. The old money and deep state have begun to systematically strike the stability of an emerging India. A classic pet project of the anti-Indian establishment, the issue of Khalistan has resurfaced”, The Organizer reported.

United Nations (UN)-affiliated organizations, like an NGO named United Sikhs, are additionally deeply entwined on this propaganda in opposition to India. United Sikhs additionally has workplaces in Pakistan and Canada and has the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) as its companion. They’ve said that the Indian state is oppressing and violating the human rights of the Sikhs and questioned the grounds for the arrest of Amritpal Singh.

Canadian politicians like New Democratic Party chief Jagmeet Singh who’s well-known for his pro-Khalistani views, lately drew ire as he sought the intervention of Canadian PM Justin Trudeau on the problem, The Organizer reported.

One other Canadian politician, Tim S Uppal, wrote, “Very concerned about reports coming out of Punjab, India. The government has suspended internet services and restricted gatherings of more than 4 people in some areas. We are closely following the situation”.

The Canada-based ‘World Sikh Organisation’ claimed, “The World Sikh Organization of Canada (WSO) condemns the security operations in Punjab to arrest Sikh leader Bhai Amritpal Singh”, The Organizer reported.

Canada-based poet, Rupi Kaur, claimed, “Mass arrests of Sikh activists are taking place in Punjab. at least 78 people taken. Internet and SMS have been shut down in areas along with crackdowns on gatherings. Sikh media outlets and pages have been Blocked.”

Equally, UK-based politicians like British Sikh Labor MP Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi expressed his views on the continued state of affairs and was slammed for his instigating remarks.

Khalsa Assist (Canada) director, Jindi Singh KA, alleged, “The burden of fighting for Sikh Rights yet again falls at the feet of Sikh Youth Activists, who are now being rounded up by Punjab Police, with the internet cut & gathering of 4 +banned.” “Is this the behavior of a mature democracy? We remember the State Violence of the 80s & 90s,” he added, The Organizer reported.

The Hudson Institute mentioned in a report final 12 months that though the Khalistan motion has no resonance inside India, teams within the diaspora, particularly in North America and Europe, proceed making an attempt to resuscitate the motion.

4 of the 9 Khalistani activists designated as terrorists by the Indian authorities in 2020 are based mostly in Pakistan, and SFJ’s web sites have been linked to Pakistani addresses. Additionally, SFJ spokespeople within the West have taken half in occasions organized by the Pakistani embassy in the US in collaboration with teams comparable to Mates of Kashmir – a Houston-based group with shut hyperlinks to the Pakistani regime and proscribed jihadist organizations, the report mentioned.

The Hudson Institute report Pakistan’s Destabilization Playbook: Khalistan Separatism inside the US, emphasizes the necessity for legislation enforcement in Western international locations to be vigilant with respect to Pakistan-backed extremist teams. The actions of Khalistani teams situated in North America needs to be investigated, inside the limits prescribed by legislation, to forestall a reoccurrence of the violence orchestrated by the Khalistan motion within the Eighties.

Throughout that interval, together with quite a few assaults on civilians, the Khalistan motion was linked to the 1985 bombing of Air India Flight 182 from Montreal to London, which left 329 useless, and the failed bombing of an Air India jet in Tokyo on the identical day .

Within the Nineties, federal brokers accused a number one Khalistani activist, Bhajan Singh Bhinder, of searching for to obtain explosives, rifles, rocket launchers, and Stinger missiles. In 2006, a New York federal court docket convicted Pakistani-Canadian Khalid Awan of offering help to the Khalistan Commando Force, “a terrorist organization responsible for thousands of deaths in India since its founding in 1986”, the report mentioned.

The statue of Mahatma Gandhi was vandalized in California by a gaggle of miscreants in January 2021 in a nefarious act in opposition to the embodiment of peace. The statue given by the Indian authorities to the Metropolis of Davis in 2016 was put in in a park that fell prey to the anti-India and anti-Gandhi organizations. sA related incident was additionally reported in Washington DC in December 2020, when a gaggle of miscreants defaced Mahatma Gandhi’s statue, which made headlines in each Indian and the US media.

The media reported that the important thing group behind these acts within the US was the Organization for the Minorities of India (OFMI). The group was based by Pieter Friedrich, a self-proclaimed professional on South Asia, and Bhajan Singh Bhinder aka Iqbal Choudhary, a pro-Khalistani operative residing within the US, as per a latest report by The Disinfolab.

Bhajan Singh Bhinder was a member of the Sikh Youth of America (based in 1989), which was the pro-Khalistani group spearheading the Khalistani actions within the US and Canada. The group was below the radar of the Canadian and the US authorities on varied events for his or her hyperlinks with the Worldwide Sikh Youth Federation based mostly in Canada, within the drug trafficking case. Bhinder was named within the notorious Lal Singh vs State of Gujarat case, the place he was named because the financier of the deliberate terrorist assaults in India.

Lal Singh together with 4 others, Mohammad Sharief (ISI agent), Tahir Jamal, Mohammad Saquib Nachan, and Shoaib Mukhtiyar, all labored with the ISI for a conspiracy referred to as Okay-2 (Kashmir-Khalistan) in 1991-92, which was hatched in Lahore below the patronage of Amir ul Azeem, the then Secretary of Jamaat-e-Islami, and was actively supported by a number of Pakistani institution gamers together with Choudhary Altaf Hussain, ultimately the Governor of Punjab (Pakistan) and uncle of the previous S&T Minister of Pakistan, Fawad Choudhary, the report mentioned.

The OFMI adopted various strategies to dent India’s picture of non-violence, Yoga, and chai. The alternate narrative was designed to hit India’s picture as a democracy and deem it as a ‘Fascist state’, with degrading democratic values. A bunch of pseudo-experts was thus created to bolster the alter-narrative, The Information Dislab mentioned.

Pieter Friedrich, who was being promoted within the mainstream as an ‘professional’ wrote books on ‘Fascism in India’, in opposition to Mahatma Gandhi, and even whitewashed Pakistan’s position within the Kabul Gurdwara blast; All of Pieter’s literary masterpieces have been printed below Bhajan Singh Bhinder’s publishing home Sovereign Star Publishing.

The World Sikh Organisation, Canada that got here into being within the Eighties on the plank of ‘Khalistan’ through the years set its footprint as a human rights champion whereas following the agenda of yesteryears.

It began roping in educated and gifted youth into its fold that in the present day has penetrated into your entire system of the governance of Canada, sources mentioned.

Regardless of some lower within the Trudeau Cupboard, the group has elevated its grip over varied arms of the federal government. The group’s major agenda is raking up points in opposition to India.

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