July 23, 2024
Pro-Khalistan protest in London subdued

Pro-Khalistan protest in London subdued

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A pro-Khalistan protest outside the Indian High Commission in London was relatively subdued and passed off without incident on July 8. 

A pro-Khalistan protest outside the Indian High Commission in London was relatively subdued and passed off without incident on July 8. 
| Photo Credit: Sriram Lakshman

A pro-Khalistan protest outside the Indian High Commission in London was relatively subdued and passed off without incident on Saturday. The duration of Saturday’s demonstration was less than the scheduled duration of about 3-3.5 hours. Only a handful of people gathered in the rain to attend the protest (The Hindu estimated 35-40 were in attendance at one point ), in sharp contrast with protests at the same location earlier this year.

The protest was part of a series of demonstrations organised in several cities across the world, such as Melbourne, San Francisco and Toronto to protest the killing of Khalistani activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in British Columbia on June 18. Mr Nijjar was wanted in India on terrorism charges .

The protesters in London displayed banners with the images of India’s High Commissioner to the UK and its Consul General in Birmingham, blaming them for the killing of Mr Nijjar . Similar posters with the heads of various Indian missions around the world have been circulating on social media in recent days.

There were also posters supportive of Pakistan and Kashmir on Saturday .

U.K. Foreign Secretary James Cleverly had, on Thursday , announced on Twitter that he had provided assurances about the safety of the High Commission and its staff. A lack of adequate security has been a source of tension in the India UK relationship , especially after the national flag from the High Commission building was take down during a protest in March this year.

On Friday India called for strict action — such as deportation — against those threatening Indian officials. This was conveyed during bilateral discussions between National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and his British Counterpart Tim Barrow who was in New Delhi on Friday. .

The Metropolitan Police were present at the protest site on Saturday.

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