Extra barricades outside British High Commission in Delhi removed
The move comes days after the tricolour at the Indian High Commission in London was pulled down by Khalistani activists.
NEW DELHI: In what was seen as a tit-for-tat by India, the Delhi Police on Wednesday removed cement blocks that served as barricades outside the British High Commission and its Commissioner Alex Ellis’ residence here, days after lax security at the Indian mission in London emboldened miscreants to vandalise it. Also, sandbags and police control room (PCR) vehicles parked outside the UK mission as part of security were withdrawn.
For the record, the Delhi Police claimed that there was no reduction in security, adding the cement barricades were cleared to provide relief to the commuters. As for the British High Commission, it chose silence with its spokesperson saying, “We don’t comment on security matters.’’
Hours after the Indian retaliation, authorities in Britain reinstated policemen and barricades outside the Indian High Commission in London to manage a planned demonstration by pro-Khalistan protesters.
The protests were held across London to not just express solidarity with separatist leader Amritpal Singh, who is on the run in India, but also to urge the BBC to release a documentary that had controversial segments against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They were joined by Kashmiri separatist supporters.
Anti-India sloganeering was also heard outside a gurdwara in Southall where a fellow Indian who objected was heckled.
In his pushback, Indian High Commissioner to the UK Vikram Doraiswami sought to dispel rumours about the situation in Punjab. “The situation in India is normal and is safe for travel from the UK. There is no truth to sensational lies and the situation back home is safe,’’ he said. The Indian High Commission also hoisted a large flag over the raised Indian flag.
About a decade ago, a similar showdown happened when India had removed its visible security — cement blocks and barricades – outside the US embassy in Delhi following the arrest of its deputy consul general in New York, Devyani Khobragade, over alleged visa fraud.