A report in the Indian newspaper The Times of India claims that India’s intelligence agencies have reportedly told Canada that pro-Khalistan “terrorists”are running a camp near Mission in B.C. with a mission to carry out strikes in Punjab.
Punjab intelligence agents have alleged that Hardeep Nijjar, a Canadian, has taken over as the operational head of Khalistan Terror Force (KTF) and formed a unit of Sikh youths to carry out the attacks. The Punjab government has already submitted the report to India’s Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs to seek Nijjar’s extradition, The Times of India report says. However, Nijjar has strongly denied the allegations to Canadian media, noting that he has been running his own plumbing business.
The Punjab government’s report alleges that Nijjar “was to arrange weapons from Pakistan but due to high alert on the border in the wake of Pathankot incident [the January 2 terrorist attack on India’s Pathankot airbase, it could not materialize”. The newspaper report says that Nijjar, a baptized Sikh who has been staying in Surrey since 1995, is a proclaimed terrorist in Punjab and wanted in connection with the 2007 Shingaar cinema blast in Ludhiana in which six people were killed.
“Nijjar has been imparting arms training to his group in Canada after the arrest of former KTF chief Jagtar Tara in Thailand by Interpol last year. He took Mandeep Singh and three more Sikh youths recently for AK-47 training in a range near Mission where they were made to fire for four hours daily,” according to the intelligence report. The report claims that Nijjar was even detained by Thai authorities when he took a flight from Lahore to Vancouver via Bangkok last year. It also alleges that Mandeep and Nijjar have made frequent visits to Pakistan for arms training with the Pakistani intelligence agency ISI and attached recent photographs showing them brandishing AK-47s outside Nankana Sahib Gurdwara in Pakistan. Meanwhile Federal authorities have refused to comment upon the report.
Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale would say only that he doesn’t comment on specific security allegations, and that the government follows closely any activity that could threaten the safety of Canadians.
If there is information that needs to be acted upon, Canadian police and security agencies respond, he added. The Mounties said they were aware of the media report. “The RCMP monitors all potential threats but we are not in a position to speak to specific allegations, threats or ongoing investigations,” said Staff Sgt. Rob Vermeulen, a force spokesman in B.C. “As always we encourage the public to remain vigilant and report any suspicious behaviour to their local police agency for assessment and followup.” – CINEWS