Amidst ongoing Khalistani row between India and Canada, High Commissioner to the United Kingdom Vikram Doraiswami, who is touring Scotland, was stopped from entering the Gurdwara on Albert Drive in Glasgow by two men. The video of the incident was posted on the Instagram account of ‘Sikh youth UK’ where a pro Khalistani activist is seen blocking the envoy. The two men approach the car where one tries to unlock it though it was locked from inside. The car then moves away.
“They are hurting Sikhs in Canada and every Sikh should protest against any Indian ambassador like we did across the world. We know what games they are playing, and what’s happening in Canada. The Canadian PM has openly condemned India and expelled Indian diplomats,” the man is heard saying in the video.
#BREAKING: Khalistani radical goons forcibly stop Indian High Commissioner to UK @VDoraiswami from visiting Sikh Gurudwara in Glasgow, UK. Sikh Gurudwara Committee was welcoming Indian High Commissioner but radical Khalistani threatened them as well. UK @metpoliceuk should act. pic.twitter.com/Q0T7kZ48gl
— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) September 30, 2023
The incident has led to a major uproar in the Diplomatic circles and India taking a stern stance has demanded immediate action and additional security for the Indian High Commissioner. The matter was urgently raised with the authorities in London.
Sources in London revealed that Doraiswami had gone to Gurdwara on being invited by the Gurdwara committee but two unidentified men came and stopped him with no intervention from Gurudwara to stop them. Doraiswami has been holding several meetings with the Indian diaspora there. Though no official statement has so far been issued by MEA, the intelligence agencies believe that the isolated incident was aimed at generating some propaganda points and get ongoing Canadian tension to the United Kingdom. The Intelligence agencies claim that Khalistani extremists are just trying to reciprocate Canadian diplomatic stress in the UK. According to them releasing the video online aims at gathering cheap publicity and instigate others,
Meanwhile India is strengthening its stand against any support to anti national extremism like the Khalistan movement. Addressing a press conference in the USA External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar posed a question to other nations on how they would react if they faced the same issues with their diplomats, embassies, and citizens facing intimidation?
“How would you react if you were in my shoes? If it was your diplomats, your embassy, your people, what would be your reaction?” he asked. Jaishankar, hinting at Trudeau’s justification of Khalistani protests and marches in the name of freedom of speech and expression, said that India needed no lessons in the same.
“I flagged here (in US), and I flagged this to the Canadians as well. We are a democracy. We don’t need to learn from other people what freedom of speech is about, but we can tell people this. We don’t think freedom of speech extends to incitement to violence. That to us, is the misuse of freedom, that’s not defence of freedom”, he added.
Meanwhile, Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has virtually justified the same saying some sort of tension could have led to it. “People of England, they are upset with the illegal arrest of Jaggi Johal. That is the reason all of this is happening. We want to ask the Indian Embassy that any kind of tension should not be created. If something like this has happened with an ambassador in a Gurdwara, it affects the reputation of Sikhs”, said SGPC general secretary Gurcharan Singh Grewal.
“Earlier, an ambassador was beaten, we don’t support it. The reputation of Sikhs is affected all over the world. There is no restriction on entering any Gurudwara. But I don’t know what their reasons were. To avoid any tensions created because of his (Vikram Doraiswami) visit, they must have stopped him” he further added.
#WATCH | Patiala, Punjab: On Vikram Doraiswami, Indian High Commissioner to UK, allegedly stopped from entering a gurdwara in Scotland, SGPC General Secretary Gurcharan Singh Grewal says, “People of England, they are upset with the illegal arrest of Jaggi Johal. That is the… pic.twitter.com/AnE00Amw7b
— ANI (@ANI) September 30, 2023