Pro-Khalistani supporters heckle Indian envoy Taranjit Sandhu in New York gurudwara

| Updated: 27 November, 2023 4:28 pm IST

NEW DELHI: Indian Ambassador to the US, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, faced a disruption by pro-Khalistani supporters during his visit to a Gurudwara in New York. The incident occurred as Sandhu offered prayers at a Gurudwara in Long Island on the occasion of Gurpurab.

In a video circulating on social media, pro-Khalistani individuals confronted Sandhu with questions about designated terrorists Hardeep Singh Nijjar and Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, leading to their removal from the Gurudwara by other Sikhs.

Earlier, Sandhu had received a warm welcome at the Hicksville Gurudwara, expressing gratitude on Twitter for joining the local Sangat in celebrating Gurpurab. During the event, he assured members of the Sikh community that Indian diplomats would provide support and assistance.

Reacting to the incident, BJP National spokesperson RP Singh stated, “Khalistanis tried to heckle Indian Ambassador @SandhuTaranjitS with baseless questions for his alleged role in the failed plot to assassinate Gurpatwant and the Khalistan Referendum campaign.”

Maninder Gill from Radio India Canada condemned the incident, calling it a “shameful heckling” of India’s Ambassador to the US. He highlighted the Ambassador’s devout Sikh background and denounced the actions of the pro-Khalistani individuals, questioning whether their behaviour aligned with the principles of Sikhi and Guru Nanak’s teachings.

Meanwhile, in Surrey, BC, pro-Khalistani groups faced counter-protests at the gates of the Lakshmi Narayan Temple, with supporters chanting ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai.’ The Indo-Canadian community confronted the pro-Khalistan elements during a consular camp protest, forcing them away from the temple gates.

A UK-based daily reported a foiled conspiracy to assassinate Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on US soil and issued a warning to the Indian government. The Ministry of External Affairs acknowledged the concern, stating that relevant departments were examining the issues raised in the context of security cooperation between India and the US.

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, head of the banned separatist organisation Sikhs for Justice, defiantly announced that despite India’s alleged attempts to assassinate him, the Khalistan Referendum voting would continue.

He declared the American phase of the referendum to commence on January 28, 2024, in San Francisco, California. Pannun had previously released a video on November 4, claiming responsibility for blowing up Air India flights on November 19.

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