Sat. May 18th, 2024

New Delhi: The Indian government has raised concerns with the UK’s foreign office and police regarding an incident in which India’s High Commissioner Vikram Doraiswami was reportedly stopped from entering a gurdwara in Scotland, government sources have said.

According to a government source quoted by news agency ANI, “Doraiswami was on Friday stopped by a few radicals from entering a gurdwara in Glasgow. The Indian High Commissioner decided to leave instead of getting into an argument.”

A video posted on the Instagram channel of ‘Sikh Youth UK’ allegedly shows a man, believed to be a pro-Khalistani activist, blocking Mr Doraiswami from entering the gurdwara on Albert Drive in Glasgow.

In the video, a protestor can be heard saying, “They are hurting Sikhs in Canada and other places, every Sikh should protest against any Indian ambassador like we did here in Glasgow.”

The video also shows two men near the High Commissioner’s car in the parking area. One of them attempts to open the locked car door from the inside. The video then shows the High Commissioner’s car leaving the gurdwara premises.

Another man in the video states that this is how any Indian ambassador or government official visiting the gurdwara will be treated.

‘Sikh Youth UK’ claims that there is an ongoing ban on Indian officials visiting gurdwaras in their official capacities. The video includes a statement from a man saying, “We know what games they are playing, what’s happening in Canada. The Canadian PM has openly condemned India and expelled Indian diplomats.”

The incident in the UK comes at a time of increasing strain in India-Canada relations, following Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s allegations of India’s involvement in the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

India has categorically denied the allegations, calling them “absurd” and “motivated.” Canada has not provided any public evidence to support their claim of an Indian link to Nijjar’s killing.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has condemned the incident, with BJP leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa stating, “I strongly condemn this (that Vikram Doraiswami was allegedly stopped from entering a gurdwara in Scotland). Anyone from any religion or community can come here (gurdwara).”

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has also condemned the incident, with SGPC general secretary Grewal stating that the UK envoy should not have been stopped from entering the gurdwara, as gurdwaras are open to people of all religions.

With inputs from ANI

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