India submits 23-page dossier to Pakistan on pro-Khalistan activities on its soil
In the exhaustive 23-page dossier that India handed over to Pakistan on July 14 at a high-level delegation at the Wagah border, the government listed out its concerns about pro-Khalistan elements that are promoting anti-India activities.
While the effort was to iron out differences to ensure that the Kartarpur Sahib corridor opening scheduled for November is on right track, India also brought up the issues of anti-India elements at play.
After the dossier, Pakistan initiated the removal of pro-Khalistan leader Gopal Singh Chawla, but only to end up replacing him with Ameer Singh, another Khalistani hardliner.
India has in its dossier shared a detailed list of events between 2016 and 2019 that were orchestrated by Khalistani elements. India has said that the four annual Indian Sikh Jathas who visit important gurdwaras in Pakistan every year under a bilateral protocol to visit religious shrines (1974), have been regularly subjected to anti-lndia propaganda during their visit against the spirit of the protocol and in complete subversion of the objective of the noble bilateral arrangement.
Unfortunately, a large part of the propaganda is perpetuated during religious functions organised by Evacuee Trust Property Board, Pakistan, and the forum has been exploited to promote the agenda of Khalistan, instead of focusing on religious discourse.
Some blatant instances of such anti-lndia propaganda during the visits of Indian Jathas in the recent years are narrated below:
In 2016, during Guru Nanak's birthday celebrations in November, Sardar Mohammad Yousuf, Pakistan's Federal Minister for Religious Affairs and Harmony, in his address at the main function in Gurdwara Nankana Sahib, eulogised Burhan Wani, a Kashmiri militant and alleged that Sikhs and Kashmiris are treated like 'slaves' by the Indian government.
Anti-India rhetoric was not limited to speeches and India also gave proof of how Khalistani elements in Pakistan were inciting the youth to carry out terror attacks in India.
India cited the example of Jagroop Singh alias Rupa, who visited Pakistan, along with the Jatha in November 2016 where he was imparted arms training arranged by fugitive Sikh militants Lakhbir Singh Rode and Harmeet Singh to carry out terror attacks in India.
In recent times, posters and banners were put up near Nankana Sahib Gurdwara.
Gopal Singh Chawla, former General Secretary of PSGPC, had raised the demand of Khalistan at the same occasion and even advocated violent means to achieve the same.
Besides, he also interfered in domestic issues of India by asking Indian Sikhs to revolt against the decision of the Supreme Court on Interstate Water Agreement involving Punjab. He was also allowed to raise anti-India slogans from the dais.
Ramesh Singh Arora, Member of Provisional Assembly, Punjab Province, in his address on the same occasion, interfered in the domestic issues of India by speaking on Interstate Water Agreement involving Punjab and its drug problem.
In 2018, UK-based pro-Khalistani element Avtar Singh Sanghera and US-based pro-Khalistan element Pritpal Singh were allowed to campaign openly for Khalistan from the dais of the main event on April 14 at the Gurudwara Panja Sahib. At the same function at Gurdwara Panja Sahib, the banner 'Sikh Referendum-2020 Khalistan' with photographs of JS Bhindranwale was allowed to be prominently displayed.
During Nagar Kirtan (November 14) the pro-Khalistan groups (SAD/AUSA) carried banners depicting photographs of Sikh militants JS Bhindranwale and Subheg Singh. Pro-Khalistan and anti-India slogans were raised during the procession and pro-Khalistan literature was openly distributed.
Pro-Khalistan radical Sikhs had set up the usual Khalistan stage at Gurdwara Nankana Sahib (November 14) which was addressed by Avtar Singh Sanghera, Manmohan Singh Bajaj, Tara Singh, Joga Singh, Satinder Pal Singh and Gopal Singh Chawla. The speakers criticised the Indian government and raised the demand for creation of Khalistan.
India is said to have shared evidence on all the above incidents in form of photos and videos.