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The last-minute appeals through some selected Gurudwaras were also miserably failed to fill the coaches. The general mood in London is now against movements preaching violence and dividing communities …. reports Asian Lite News

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Free Jaggi protest in London – Image from @Twitter

Despite a massive campaign and spending thousands to book coaches to ferry people to London, the Free Jaggi protest march in London failed to create any impact. Just over 100 people attended the event. The organised arranged six buses to ferry people to London.

Londoners were amused to see a small group protesting near Downing Street violating all the Covid-19 protocol.

“Despite pressing in all resources in service including roping in a renowned footballer, not more than 130 people gathered in your so-called int’l campaign for @FreeJaggiNow,” a Londoner Tweeted.

The last-minute appeals through some selected Gurudwaras were also miserably failed to fill the coaches. The general mood in London is now against movements preaching violence and dividing communities.

Lord Rami Ranger, CBE

Meanwhile, Lord Rami Ranger, the most influential Sikh politician in Europe, condemned the protest march in the capital.

“The protesters are going about it the wrong way,” Lord Ranger told Asian Lite.  “No country can be pressurised in such a way that if it gives in, then it becomes a laughing stock of the world and encourages others to follow suit. I urge the protesters not to embarrass Mother India with such protests and pressure tactics. Instead, they should calm down and humbly make their case to the High Commissioner of India. No more threats or ultimatums, instead of reconciliation and cooperation.

“If a person is innocent, then he has nothing to worry and if he was involved in anti India activities, then the best course will be to apologise and assure the Govt of India not to reoffend.  It pays to respect the authority responsible for the safety and security of the people.”

Johal was arrested for his alleged involvement in the murders of retired Indian army officer Brigadier Jagdish Gagneja, RSS leader Ravinder Gosain and Pastor Sultan Masih, and for funding of Khalistan Liberation Force, a proscribed terrorist organisation by Government of India.

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Free Jaggi protest in London – Image from @Twitter

KLF is being accused by  Indian agencies for series of terror conspiracies and consequential assassinations in India during 2016-2017.

Meanwhile, Indian officials rejected the Khalistani claim of alleged torture and illegal detention of Johal.

“Jagtar Singh Johal has been arrested on serious charges relating to terrorism,” the Indian officials said in a statement. “It is untrue that he is being held without any charges. The Prosecuting agency, National Investigation Agency (NIA) has already filed chargesheet in the Court of Law and he is presently undergoing judicial proceedings as per the law of the land.

“It is absolutely untrue that he has been subjected to torture. He has been granted Consular Access several times to the UK High Commission in New Delhi. Further, institutional safeguards like the Human Rights Commission exists to investigate any such allegation.

“Unfortunately, Mr. Johal has been instrumentalised into terrorism by those who misguide the youth. These are the same elements who have instigated the march planned for 19 August 2020 to 10 Downing Street. The whole reason for the march is based on fabricated and misinformation campaign directed on the Sikh Community in the UK by these vested elements.

“The Sikh Community is a vibrant element of India’s secular fabric. You all would have witnessed that way Government of India celebrated with grace and honour, in an unprecedented scale, the 550th Birth Anniversary of Shri Guru Nanak Dev Ji all over India and abroad, through the Indian Embassies/High Commission’s last year. Government of India also inaugurated the Kartarpur Corridor in 2019 so as to enable the facilitation of Sikh Pilgrims to visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur in Pakistan. Further, in UK a Sikh Studies Chair has been instituted in the University of Birmingham by Government of India. The High Commission in India has undertaken visits of British Sikh students to India as part of the Know your Roots programme. “

The Khalistani movement is getting support from Pakistan funded organisations and prominent Pakistani leaders like Lord Nazir, who is on bail over historical sex offences.

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Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh

Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Amarinder Singh rejected the torture of Johal at Punjab prison.

“These allegations are totally baseless, with not an iota of proof to support them,” the Chief Minister said.

He also urged other democratic countries to stay away from encouraging separatists movements in their land.

“India has never interfered in other countries’ policing and legal matters, even if an Indian citizen was involved, and expect the same respect and diplomatic propriety to be followed by other nations as well,” he added.

“Radical elements based in Britain and other countries have orchestrated a false and slanderous media campaign against the Punjab government and state police,” he said.

The chief minister said the police officers involved in the probe against Johal are getting threats.

“Police officers are receiving death threats targeted at them and their family members from such elements over phone, WhatsApp and social media platforms,” the Chief Minister added.

“From permission to talk to his family to consular access, medical examinations to timely production in court, the due process of law had been followed at every step from the moment he was arrested,” Amarinder Singh said.

The Chief Minister said his government was more concerned about maintaining Punjab’s peace and stability rather than worrying about perceived embarrassment at the hands of foreign forces that have no stake in India’s security or development.

 

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