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Monday, March 08, 2021

NIA files third chargesheet against SFJ, 6 booked under UAPA

In the two chargesheets filed earlier, NIA had alleged that the SFJ was instigating Sikhs in the Indian Army and the police to rise in mutiny against the Indian State.

Written by Deeptiman Tiwary | New Delhi |
Updated: February 11, 2021 9:27:29 pm
Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, fir against Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, gurgaon police files fir against Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, who is Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, Gurpatwant Singh Pannu caseThe six named in the chargesheet include US-based SFJ chief Gurpatwant Singh Pannun. (File)

The National Investigation Agency has filed a chargesheet against six members of the Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) — its third against the banned pro-Khalistan outfit — in a case of hoisting of the Khalistan flag and tearing of the Indian Tricolour on the premises of the deputy commissioner’s office in Punjab’s Moga in August last year.

Filed in a Mohali court on Thursday, the chargesheet has been filed against six people, including US-based SFJ chief Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, under various sections of the IPC and the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).

In the two chargesheets filed earlier, NIA had alleged that the SFJ was instigating Sikhs in the Indian Army and the police to rise in mutiny against the Indian State. It had also claimed that SFJ cadres in India had engaged in a series of acts of violence and propaganda for the cause of Khalistan.

“Investigation has revealed that accused Inderjit Singh, Jaspal Singh and Akashdeep Singh were radicalised members of SFJ… and conspired with Gurpatwant Singh Pannun and Rana Singh of SFJ. In furtherance of conspiracy, accused Inderjit Singh, Jaspal Singh and Akashdeep Singh were involved in hoisting Khalistani flag at DC Office Complex, Moga on August 14, 2020, and also tearing of Indian National Flag,” the chargesheet filed on Thursday stated.

According to NIA, following the hoisting of the flag, the accused made a video of the incident and sent it to Pannun and Rana Singh, who broadcast the same on social media platforms such as YouTube, US Media International and SFJ Channel “to propagate the secessionist agenda of SFJ and in support of Referendum-2020 for making separate State of Khalistan”.

It alleged that Pannun and Rana Singh also sent funds through money transfer services to Inderjit Singh and Jaspal Singh after the crime.

“During investigation various electronic devices like laptop, hard disc, mobile phones containing incriminating material were seized from the accused persons establishing their strong involvement,” the agency alleged.

In its first chargesheet filed against Pannun and 15 others in December last year, NIA had alleged, “SFJ has been attempting to undermine the security of the Indian State by instigating Sikh personnel in the Indian Army to rise up in mutiny against India. SFJ is also trying to radicalise youth of Kashmir and openly extending support for secession of Kashmir from India.”

In the second chargesheet in the same month, it accused Pannun and others of a “series of acts of violence, including acts of arson in Punjab during the year 2017-18, carrying out propaganda activities both online and on ground campaigns in support of SFJ and Referendum- 2020”.

Referendum 2020 is a reference to an online campaign launched by SFJ in support of formation of Khalistan.

“These acts were committed by a gang of radicalised Sikh youth under direction and financial assistance from SFJ handlers located abroad as part of an organized conspiracy by the accused for launching a concerted secessionist campaign for creation of Khalistan,” the NIA had said.

The agency has claimed that its probe revealed that SFJ has launched an incessant campaign using numerous social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, YouTube and a number of websites to propagate sedition and disturb peace and harmony in India.

“These social media accounts are being used to radicalise impressionable youth and breed enmity on the grounds of region and religion. Investigation has also clearly established that Gurpatwant Singh Pannun radicalised and recruited the other accused persons into SFJ…. The accused persons had received funding from their handlers located abroad through various MTSS platforms to further the conspiracy,” it said.

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