Govt deploys multi-pronged strategy as Pak piggy-backs on pro-Khalistan entities to trigger unrest

According to sources in the ministry of home affairs, the pro-Khalistan extremists abroad backed by Pak, have been engaging and reaching forging alliances with criminals and gangsters.

Published: 13th February 2023 11:04 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th February 2023 12:33 PM   |  A+A-

Punjab, Pakistan Punjab, Khalistan

Representational image (Express Illustration| Soumyadip Sinha)

Express News Service

While the UK has recently warned India about the growing instances of “potentially toxic" pro-Khalistan extremism which is leading to the mobilisation of funds and sympathisers to trigger disruptive and terror activities in India remotely, the Government has already deployed multi-pronged counter strategies in place to counter the menace.   

According to sources in the ministry of home affairs, the pro-Khalistan extremists abroad backed by Pak, have been engaging and reaching forging alliances with criminals and gangsters. “An ecosystem of partnership based on mutual interest has developed between Khalistan extremists, criminals, and drug-traffickers,” says an officer adding “It is quite a dangerous trend as though most of these local gangsters and petty criminals do not subscribe to the interest and radical ideology of Khalistan, they are being used to providing logistic support to the extremists including foot soldiers, arms-ammunition, shelter etc.”

The officer said that most of these local associates of the foreign-based pro-Khalistan operatives and handlers “are petty criminals who pull triggers and indulge in criminal activities just for money and they eventually end up main perpetrators and conspirators of terror plots.”

The local associates involved in narco-trade and even gangsters meanwhile have been a cause of serious concern says an officer. But the major breakthrough happened with the arrested four sharpshooters of the Pakistan-backed Khalistani syndicates of Harvinder Singh alias Rinda and the Canada-based gangster turned terrorist Lakhbir Singh alias Landa in October 2022 .

“Investigations revealed, that Rinda and Landa were supplying arms and weapons to three infamous groups -- Lawrence Bishnoi syndicate, its rival gang Davinder Bambiha syndicate and other local criminals of Punjab who largely work independently or within small networks, " an official of the counter-terror unit said.

Sources said both Rinda and Landa were working with the objective to revive terrorism in Punjab, for which ISI is backing them with sophisticated weapons, ammunition and funding. Sources said that in fact ISI and Pak-based groups wanted a joint collaboration between Khalistani and Kashmiri terrorists (K2 Terrorists) as the common objective is to destabilise India.

The formation of the terrorist group “Lashkar[1]e-Khalsa” or SFJ offshoot of Kashmir Khalistan Referendum Front (KKRF) are an effort in this direction. Joint protests of Khalistani and Kashmiri separatists have also been organised in foreign locations.

Khalistan propaganda outside India are  being run by a network of NGOs, lobby groups etc as their activities are protected  as freedom of expression and motives being portrayed as a political movement, an MHA official said adding that “they have been indulging in fund-raising, run social media propaganda networks, claim asylum and exemption from extradition in case of criminal prosecution at home.”

“Though funds are being pumped in the form of drugs and weapons, often delivered through drones, we have identified the local peddlers and the design; the focus is now to block the funding while being ruthless with cleansing and crackdowns,” the MHA official asserted.


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