India mustn't let its ties with the US fray

New Delhi has constituted a high-level inquiry panel to probe charges related to the alleged Pannun conspiracy.  (HT_PRINT)
New Delhi has constituted a high-level inquiry panel to probe charges related to the alleged Pannun conspiracy. (HT_PRINT)

Summary

  • First Canada and then the US. New Delhi has set up a panel to probe insinuations reportedly made by the US over a plot to kill a Khalistan separatist. We must get to the bottom of this at the earliest.

Weeks after Canada’s charge of a suspected Indian state link to this June’s killing on its soil of a Khalistan activist wanted as a terrorist back in India was met with disbelief and demands for proof, a report appeared in London’s Financial Times of US authorities having foiled a plot in America to assassinate Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, another separatist in the same bracket. Not just that, citing unnamed sources, the report added that the US had apprised India’s government of concerns the latter was involved. 

This might seem like a second instance of such an insinuation, and thus less easy to dismiss. But the more pressing reason that New Delhi has constituted a high-level inquiry panel to probe charges related to the alleged Pannun conspiracy, as announced by the external affairs ministry on Wednesday, seems to be the power of the country that’s levelling them. 

The ministry took care to say the issue arose as part of talks on bilateral security cooperation and that the US “shared some inputs" on a “nexus between organized criminals, gun runners, terrorists and others", but the matter is clearly more sensitive than it let on. Let’s hope it is resolved soon.

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