• Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Diaspora

Sikh separatist leader uploads video against India’s Modi, top ministers ahead of polls

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun’s video targeted the Indian defence minister, foreign minister and a former secretary of India’s intelligence agency RAW and accused the Modi government of ‘transnational terrorism’.

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun (Picture: Twitter/@SortedEagle)

By: Twinkle Roy

KHALISTAN separatist leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannu has made the headlines again, this time for uploading an intimidating video targeting Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and a few of his top ministers and a former intelligence official, saying his group Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) will challenge them “right in their own backyard”.

Speaking against Indian defence minister Rajnath Singh, external affairs minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and Samant Goel, former secretary of Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), India’s foreign intelligence agency, besides Modi, the US-based Sikh leader accused the Indian government of “transnational terrorism”. 

He said the SFJ will continue to strive for Khalistan referendum. He also remarked on India’s upcoming elections beginning April 19, saying people can “embarrass Modi” by showing shoes and shouting shame at him.

He can also be seen unabashedly claiming that his outfit, the banned Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) will continue to mobilise Sikhs for the so-called Khalistan referendum.

Pannun also said that the general elections is the right opportunity for Indian voters to “embarrass Modi” by “showing shoes” at him.

Read: India’s ‘targeted killings’ in Pakistan: US refuses to ‘get in the middle’

The video, lasting nearly three minutes, showed clips from Singh’s recent interview to a TV channel in which he says the government will give a befitting reply to any terrorist who tries to disturb India’s peace.

It also showed a clip of Modi saying at a recent election rally in Jamui in the eastern state of Bihar that “aaj ka bharat ghar mein ghus kar maarta hai” (today’s India gets into your territory to hit you). He also launched a scathing attack on the opposition Indian National Congress claiming that during the rule of the latter’s United Progressive Alliance, India was considered a weak country.

“You remember 10 years ago, what was the opinion of India in the world? During the rule of Congress, India was considered a weak and poor country. Terrorists from small countries, used to launch attacks in India and Congress used to complain about it to other countries. But today India can strike inside enemy’s home,” Modi said.

Read: ‘Will enter Pakistan to kill terrorists’: Islamabad slams India defence minister’s remark

In the video, Pannun also urged the governments of countries such as US, Canada and Pakistan to follow ‘Lex talionis’ which implies an equal punishment approach.

It is not the first time that the separatist leader has released a video on social media targeting India.

In November last year, the man, designated a terrorist by India, released a video asking Sikhs not to fly in Air India aircraft after November 19, as their lives can be under threat. He claimed that Air India would not be allowed to operate on November 19, the day when the final of the 50-over World Cup was held in Ahmedabad in the western state of Gujarat.

Ties between India and the US, which otherwise have flourished in recent times, witnessed a turbulence over an alleged plot hatched by an Indian agent to eliminate Pannun, an American citizen, on that country’s soil. The government of Canada had in September last year also accused India of being involved in the killing of Sikh independence advocate, Hardeep Singh Nijjar, on its soil.

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