• Friday, March 01, 2024

HEADLINE STORY

Khalistani activists heckle Indian ambassador during visit to US Gurdwara

Taranjit Singh Sandhu attended the Gurunanak Darbar Gurdwara in Long Island, New York for Gurpurab celebrations, a significant festival for Sikh followers

Taranjit Singh Sandhu joins the local Sangat at Guru Nanak Darbar of Long Island – Image Credit: Twitter@SandhuTaranjitS

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

Pro-Khalistan activists heckled the Indian ambassador to the United States, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, during his visit to a gurdwara in New York on Sunday (26), forcing him to leave the premises.

Videos circulated widely depicted the activists shouting and accusing Ambassador Sandhu of plotting the assassination of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar and planning to murder another terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, leader of the Khalistani organisation Sikhs for Justice.

Ambassador Sandhu attended the Gurunanak Darbar Gurdwara in Long Island, New York for Gurpurab celebrations, a significant festival for Sikh followers.

The incident comes after Nijjar was assassinated at a Sikh temple in British Columbia in June 2023, with Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau alleging the role of Indian agents in the killing.

Additionally, reports surfaced of a thwarted Indian plan to assassinate Pannun in the US.

On Wednesday, the White House declared its serious concern about the reported assassination attempt on American soil and emphasised that it had brought the matter to the attention of the Indian government at the highest levels.


During the ambassador’s visit, protesters voiced opposition to India’s suppression of the Sikh movement, displaying Khalistani flags as Sandhu left the Gurdwara in haste.

Responding to the incident, Pannun, a Sikh leader, criticised Sandhu for leaving without addressing their concerns, alleging India’s interference in preventing the Khalistan referendum.

The activists pressed the ambassador about his role in suppressing the Khalistan referendum, while Himmat Singh, representing pro-Khalistan Sikhs, accused New Delhi of assassinating Nijjar who was the president of Surrey Gurdwara in Canada and the coordinator for the Canadian chapter of Khalistan Referendum.

A viral video captured the exchange, where Sandhu acknowledged his visit for service (seva) at the gurdwara amid protesters’ accusations.

Sandhu later shared his gurdwara visit on social media, emphasising unity and togetherness but made no mention of the heckling he faced.

The killing of Khalistani Nijjar and Trudeau’s accusations against India have led to diplomatic tensions. India has refuted these claims as “absurd” and “motivated” and has called for evidence to support the allegations.

Eastern Eye

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