Bri­tain prob­ing pro-khal­is­tan ac­tiv­i­ties

Asian Journal - - WORLD -

New Delhi: Bri­tish se­cu­rity agen­cies are in­ves­ti­gat­ing pro-khal­is­tan ac­tiv­i­ties fol­low­ing al­le­ga­tions of ter­ror of­fences there, Bri­tish High Com­mis­sioner to In­dia Do­minic Asquith said here on Wed­nes­day.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tion comes af­ter a pro-khal­is­tan rally was held at Trafal­gar Square in Lon­don in Au­gust.

Bri­tish de­tec­tives searched a num­ber of prop­er­ties on Septem­ber 18 as part of a West Mid­lands Counter Ter­ror­ism Unit (WMCTU) in­ves­ti­ga­tion based on in­tel­li­gence gath­ered over a pe­riod of time.

“The searches were in con­nec­tion with al­le­ga­tions of ter­ror­ist of­fences in the UK re­lat­ing to ac­tiv­ity in In­dia, and also fraud of­fences,” Asquith said.

“The in­ves­ti­ga­tion is led by WMCTU and is not di­rected by the UK or In­dian govern­ment.”

Sikhs for Jus­tice (SFJ), a hu­man rights ad­vo­cacy group with rad­i­cal lean­ing, held what it calls a “Lon­don Dec­la­ra­tion” on an in­de­pen­dence ref­er­en­dum for the In­dian state of Pun­jab at Trafal­gar Square on Au­gust 12. Asquith said that though peo­ple in Bri­tain have a right to protest and to demon­strate their views, pro­vided they act within the law, “should a protest con­tra­vene the law, the po­lice have com­pre­hen­sive pow­ers to deal with ac­tiv­i­ties that spread hate or de­lib­er­ately raise ten­sions through vi­o­lence or pub­lic disor­der”. “This does not negate the right to peace­ful protest,” he said

“The use of these pow­ers and the man­age­ment of demon­stra­tions are an op­er­a­tional mat­ter for the po­lice.”

The Bri­tish High Com­mis­sioner said that the cur­rent in­ves­ti­ga­tion is a po­lice mat­ter and is on­go­ing.

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