The British MPs demanded action against the “Khalistani hooligans” responsible for the violence and expressed concerns about the safety of India’s diplomatic staff
By: Kimberly Rodrigues
In the House of Commons on Thursday (23), British MPs raised concerns about the recent vandalism carried out by pro-Khalistan extremists at the Indian High Commission. The MPs demanded action against the “Khalistani hooligans” responsible for the violence and expressed concerns about the safety of India’s diplomatic staff.
Conservative Party MP Bob Blackman called for a parliamentary debate to discuss measures to ban the groups behind the violence, while Opposition Labour Party MP Gareth Thomas asked about the steps being taken to prevent any future incidents of this nature.
Responding to these concerns, Cabinet minister Penny Mordaunt, addressing the Business of the House, reiterated foreign secretary James Cleverly’s earlier statement announcing a review of the protection measures around the Indian mission in London.
Mordaunt strongly condemned the vandalism and violent acts, describing them as completely unacceptable and directed towards the High Commission and its staff.
Blackman pointed out that the attack on Sunday (19) was the sixth time in as many years that the Indian High Commission has been attacked in a similar way. “The hooliganism of Khalistani hooligans outside the Indian high commission on Sunday is a disgrace to this country,” he said.
He added, “Khalistani militants are operating across the world; Canada, the US and Australia saw similar attacks over the weekend. We are harbouring Khalistani terrorists in this country right now. Can we have a debate in government time on what action we can take to ensure that these terrorists are held to account and banned in this country.”
Meanwhile, the Indian High Commission in London is countering disinformation on social media alleging that the objects hurled during Wednesday’s pro-Khalistan demonstration came from India House.
The High Commission clarified that only a small minority of protesters threw water bottles, ink balloons, eggs, and flares at the High Commission, and that nothing was thrown by mission staff at their own people.
The Commission tweeted videos as proof and urged people not to believe the disinformation aimed at disrupting harmony. The UK government has condemned the attacks and pledged to “robustly respond” to incidents of violence.
(With inputs from PTI)