New Delhi, March 26
American security services foiled an attempt by aggressive and abusive pro-Khalistan demonstrators to target the Indian Embassy in Washington days after the MEA had summoned its senior-most diplomat and strongly taken up the vandalising of its consulate in San Francisco by a similar mob.
As the demonstrators raised the pitch of their sloganeering, which was also directed at Indian Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu, the US Secret Service and the local police quickly brought in reinforcements that included more personnel and the deployment of three additional police vans in front of the embassy.
The security services were also quick to intercept a group of protesters who had crossed the road separating them from the embassy and asked them to return to a marked designated protest area. The modus operandi appeared to be the same as in San Francisco, where a mob had suddenly rushed past temporary security barriers into the consulate where it tried to bring down the Tricolour. In their speeches, most of the protesters were seen trying to incite violence. Some of the speakers were seen inciting fellow protesters to indulge in violence and break windows and glasses of the embassy building across the road, reported agencies.
While there were strict instructions for the protesters to remain confined to a designated spot and there was presence of enough police and plainclothes security personnel, the demonstrators targeted PTI correspondent Lalit K Jha, who was roughed up.
The Indian embassy condemned the attack on the reporter. “We have seen disturbing visuals of a senior Indian journalist being abused, threatened and assaulted physically while covering the so-called ‘Khalistan protest’ in Washington DC,” the Indian mission said in a statement.
“Such activities only underscore the violent and anti-social tendencies of the so-called Khalistani protesters and their supporters, who routinely engage in wanton violence and vandalism,” said the Indian Embassy while thanking the law-enforcement agencies for their prompt response in the matter. “This violence against Jha is outrageous and an assault on journalism,” tweeted Indian-American Congressman Ro Khanna.
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