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Pacific Punjab Cops Mount Pressure On Suspected Sikh Militants In Malaysia


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Punjab Cops Mount Pressure On Suspected Sikh Militants In Malaysia
<!--By: Ramjit
<!-- You are not an authorised user. Please contact us 03-20504478 immediately so we may assist you.-->By P. Vijian

NEW DELHI, Aug 18 (Bernama) -- Suspected Sikh militants, believed to be in hiding in Malaysia, are allegedly involved in firearms smuggling and dispatching militants to carry out violent attacks in Punjab.

This is based on incriminating evidence -- linking at least four militants said to have set up base in Malaysia -- which is in possession of the Punjab police.

Punjab director-general of police P. S. Gill has initiated moves through the Indian Home Ministry to step up a probe into the alleged Khalistan Liberation Front (KLF) terror operators suspected to be lodged in Malaysia.

"Punjab police have shared evidences with the Government of India on whatever information we have, following various interrogations (of a suspected Sikh militant) from Malaysia.

"We have compiled a dossier which will be sent to the home ministry...now, it is up to the Government of India to take up the matter," a Chandigarh-based senior intelligence officer familiar with the ongoing investigation, told Bernama today.

The dossier, containing details of the four militants, their modus operandi and funding mechanism -- will be submitted to the Delhi-based ministry later today, requesting the Indian Government to pursue action through diplomatic channels with the Malaysian police.

Compounding the sensitive exposure, just days ahead of the mega October Commonwealth Games, India's Minister of State for Home Affairs Ajay Maken warned parliament on Tuesday that several overseas-based Sikh militant outfits were attempting to revive militancy in Punjab.

"Available reports suggest that Sikh militant groups, especially those based abroad, are continuing their efforts to revive militancy in Punjab.

"A close watch is maintained on the activities of various groups known to have been engaged in trying to foment terrorist activities in Punjab," he told Indian legislators.

Indian intelligence agencies are now piecing inputs that could likely unfurl an international terror network -- linking Sikh militants operating from Germany, United Kingdom and Malaysia -- involved in plotting terror strikes in India, ahead of the international games.

Patiala police in Punjab told Bernama last month that at least four KLF members were suspected to be operating from Seremban, after one of the militants was detained in the state, upon his return from Kuala Lumpur (last month).

Young suspected Sikh militants were alleged to be travelling to Malaysia to touch base with one of their key leaders, named Harminder Singh @ Mintu, to orchestrate terror activities on Indian soil.

The group was believed to be preying on illegal workers largely from Punjab, to recruit them for their clandestine operations, according to police sources.

The once-lethal KLF had carried out a violent secessionist war in Punjab, since the 1980s, to create a separate homeland for the majority Sikh community in the state. Punjab police vanquished them in 1993.

But, the broken-up organisation later regrouped under several splinter groups, like the Khalistan Zindabad Force and the Khalistan Commando Force (KCF) -- overtly backed by some South Asia-based extremist movements to continue their 'Khalistan' (homeland) struggle -- despite eroding support in the state itself.

The Indian Home Ministry has proscribed over 30 organisations as terror outfits under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention Act, 1967), which includes the Babbar Khlsa International, KCF and International Sikh Youth Federation -- all emanating from Punjab.

In Punjab alone, there are about a dozen militant outfits.

At least, 1,300 people were reported killed in terror attacks across India from January to August 2010, and half of the fatalities were civilians -- making India a vulnerable state to homegrown and international terrorism.


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