NIA team in Canada to investigate pro-Khalistan groups, their funding

Besides Canada, the probe agency is also looking to dig out funding routes in UK, US, Australia, France and Germany

NIA team in Canada to investigate pro-Khalistan groups, their funding

A three-member team of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) reached Canada on Friday to probe the funding routes for pro-Khalistan groups trying to create unrest in India. - File photo

Mukesh Ranjan

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 6

A three-member team of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) reached Canada on Friday to probe the funding routes for pro-Khalistan groups trying to create unrest in India.

During its four-day visit, the team, led by an Inspector General-rank officer, would discuss with the Canadian authorities the findings of its probe against such groups, including Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), Babbar Khalsa International (BKI), Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF) and Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF).

The team is likely to press for execution of the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty for faster sharing of information related to anti-India activities, said sources. Besides Canada, the probe agency is learnt to be equipped with details of funding routes from the UK, the US, Australia, France and Germany.

Earlier this year, when the farmers protesting the Central farm laws organised a march to Delhi on the Republic Day, the SFJ is learnt to have announced a $2.5 lakh (approx Rs 1.85 crore) reward for anyone hoisting a Khalistani flag atop the Red Fort. The SFJ’s Gurpatwant Singh Pannu had, in a purported video, tried to link the protests with the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

In December last year, the government had included Pannu, KTF’s Paramjit Singh Pamma and Hardeep Singh Nijjar as “designated terrorists” under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, following which the NIA registered an FIR against them.

“The SFJ and other Khalistani terrorist organisations, including but not limited to BKI, KTF and KZF, along with their frontal outfits are conspiring to create an atmosphere of fear and lawlessness and cause disaffection among people to incite them against the government of India,” the NIA mentioned in the FIR.

In furtherance of the conspiracy, massive funds were being collected abroad for on-ground campaign and propaganda against missions in countries like the US, UK, Canada, France, Germany and Australia, it added.

The NIA had then filed a chargesheet against 10 Khalistani terrorists, including Pannu (a resident of New York), Pargat Singh, Sukhraj Singh, Bikramjit Singh, Manjeet Singh, Jatinder Singh, Gurwinder Singh, Harpreet Singh, Kuldeep Singh and Harmeet Singh.

Invoking treaty

  • The NIA will press for execution of Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty for sharing info
  • It’s also looking to dig out funding routes in UK, US, Australia, France and Germany
  • Pro-Khalistan groups have been trying to create unrest in India, says the agency

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