New Delhi [India], December 7 (ANI): India has raised the matter of threats issued by Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on the Indian Parliament, with the United States and Canadian authorities, the Ministry of External Affairs said on Thursday.
Pannun, who is a designated terrorist by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), in a recent video, threatened to attack Parliament on or before December 13. Pannun holds the dual citizenship of both the US and Canada.
Notably, on December 13, 2001, a terrorist attack took place at the Indian Parliament and the main convict Mohammed Afzal Guru was hanged at the Tihar Jail in 2013.
Addressing the weekly press briefing, Arindam Bagchi said, "We do take threats seriously. We are caught in a bind here. I don't want to amplify too much credence to such extremists who make threats and get a lot of coverage. We have taken up this matter with the US and Canadian authorities. Extremists and terrorists have the tendency to want media coverage on an issue.
Regarding reports of threats on Air India flights by Khalistani extremists, the MEA said that the Indian security agencies will take appropriate action if any criminal activity takes place.
"Last month, they had threatened on a particular date...Of course, we would condemn any such threat and our security agencies will take appropriate actions...if there are incidents of criminal activity, or we feel there is a threat, we will take appropriate action," Bagchi said.
On being asked if India has demanded the US to prosecute Pannun, the MEA spokesperson said that New Delhi seeks assistance through the proper procedure and has flagged its concerns to its partners multiple times.
"He (Pannun) is wanted by our agencies for violation of the law and there is a process under which we seek assistance and that they are prosecuted. It depends on whether the crime is committed. In our case, I think requests have gone through detailing the kind of crimes that he is responsible for, in India," Bagchi said.
He added, "We have also flagged concerns to our partners regarding any threats made by extremists or terrorists against India or Indian diplomats...We do take it from time to time, there is ongoing conversation, security cooperation, it's an ongoing process".
MEA stated that Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray's upcoming visit to India is part of the bilateral cooperation between New Delhi and Washington.
However, Bagchi didn't comment on what exact issues that will be discussed during his visit.
"We have robust security, cyber security, counter-terrorism and counter-narcotics terrorism with the US agencies. We also engage in capacity building programs...as part of this ongoing bilateral cooperation visit by the FBI director is in the works," Bagchi said.
Regarding the reports of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorists being killed by unknown gunmen in Pakistan, the MEA said that India would like the terrorists to face the legal system in India.
"...Those who are wanted in India to face justice for criminal and terrorist activities, we would like them to come to India and face our legal system but I cannot comment on developments that are taking place in Pakistan," Bagchi further said. (ANI)