Melbourne: Rattled by the hoisting of Khalistani flags at an event by the Indian community in Melbourne, the Indian government has alerted the top brass of the Australian government over the rise of Sikh separatists in Australia.
India’s move comes at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is visiting to Australia for attending the Quad national leaders’ meeting.
The Australian government had funded the event organized by the Indian community in Melbourne on November 19. A large number of Khalistani sympathisers waived separatist flags during the event. Indian officials have reached out to Foreign Minister Penny Wong and Home Affairs Minister Claire O’Neil in recent weeks to express concern over the growing support for the Khalistani movement in Australia, especially Melbourne,
Earlier, India had also expressed its anger against the ‘referendum’ being held in Canada by Sikh separatists demanding a separate state in India. Indian officials told the two Australian ministers that the history of the Khalistani movement is linked to terrorism and there has been a lot of violence over the issue in the past.
Officials said that many of the Sikhs who have been victims of terrorism have migrated to Australia, Canada, the US and the UK, where they are connecting the youth of the community with them to demand a separate state. The event in Melbourne was held under the banner of the Victorian Gurdwara Council, which was funded by the state government.
Indian security officials have enough evidence about the ISI’s hand behind the terror attacks in Punjab. The terrorists are being patronised by banned organisations like Babbar Khalsa International, Khalistan Commando Force, Khalistan Zindabad Force, International Sikh Youth Federation and Sikhs for Justice, officials said.