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US Indictment Supports Trudeau’s Claims of Sikh Activist Killing

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The unveiling of a U.S. indictment is shedding light on the alleged assassination of a prominent Canadian Sikh activist, according to Trudeau’s claims.

Back when Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau claimed that India orchestrated the killing on Canadian soil, few of his allies defended him amid the immediate backlash.

According to the document, the U.S. is now accusing an Indian agent of directing the attempted assassination of an American citizen just days after Nijjar’s death. The indictment highlights concerns about the safety of the Sikh diaspora.

And it points to an aggressive campaign by Indian intelligence to silence overseas criticism.

With new evidence emerging and a suspect detained, one big question hangs in the air: could the prosecution expose the full extent of India’s alleged efforts to permanently silence its critics abroad?

According to Trudeau’s claims, Canada’s parliament that he had “credible allegations” that India was behind the assassination of a well-known Sikh activist, his dramatic accusation was met with silence. 

Few allies came to Trudeau’s defense on the world stage, as he stood alone accusing the major power of carrying out the assassination. 

But a recent U.S. indictment lends weight to Trudeau’s claims, suggesting he may not have been so isolated after all in pointing the finger at India for the killing on Canadian soil. And now, many are wondering what this reveals about India’s plans.

On Wednesday, an unsealed indictment in the U.S. cast new light on a killing that has frayed diplomatic ties between Canada and India, after Trudeau’s accusations. It also gives credibility to claims that India is aggressively seeking to silence outspoken Sikh critics abroad.

The indictment states that in June 2023, an Indian government agent directed the attempted assassination of an American Sikh activist on U.S. soil. 

The document also provides information about events leading up to the e murder of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, the well-known Canadian Sikh activist who was shot dead outside a Sikh temple in British Columbia.

Regarding the indictment, Trudeau said: “The news coming out of the United States further underscores what we’ve been saying from the beginning, which is that India needs to take this seriously.”

The indictment provides specifics about the alleged plot. 

It states that in June, an Indian national by the name of Nikhil Gupta, told an associate that there was a “big target” in Canada. And just days later, Gupta informed an undercover officer that “we will be needing one good team in Canada.” He indicated he would share more details about the targeting plot at a later time.

The indictment alleges these discussions took place in the lead up to activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar’s assassination in Canada. 

Gupta’s reported statements about needing a “good team” in Canada imply he was linked to coordinated plans to take out a high-profile opponent of the Indian government abroad. The document portrays Gupta as a key player in an apparent broader operation to permanently silence vocal Sikh critics overseas.

The indictment goes on to describe events on June 18th when activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar was fatally shot in Canada, which support Trudeau’s claims. Nijjar was surrounded by at least six gunmen who fired around 50 bullets, killing him. 

Later that same day, an Indian agent referred to as CC-1 sent Gupta a graphic video clip showing Nijjar’s bloodied body slumped over in his car.

Gupta apparently told the officer that Nijjar “was also a target” and “we have so many targets,” implying Nijjar was just one name on a lengthy list of Sikh activists abroad that India sought to eliminate.

Gupta allegedly added that in light of Nijjar’s successful killing in Canada, there was now no need to delay in taking out the next target in New York City.

As a result of the recent news, several activists in Canada are voicing their concerns regarding the safety of the Sikh community.

Gurkeerat Singh, a volunteer at the Sikh temple where Hardeep Singh Nijjar preached before being gunned down, said this indictment confirms what many in the community have long suspected.

“Nothing surprises us because we believed from day one that Hardeep Singh Nijjar was openly saying, from the stage of the Sikh temple, that lives are in danger.”

“From day one, word spread that the Indian state was hiring local gangsters to eliminate Sikh activists. And this indictment confirms that we’ve long said: India is engaged in transnational terrorism, without respect for the sovereignty of other countries like Canada and America,” he said.

Singh expressed a sense of tragic vindication that the charges seem to confirm India systematically targeted Nijjar and other vocal dissidents across borders. This lends credence to fears within the Sikh diaspora that speaking out against the Indian government could make them victims of state-sponsored assassination no matter their country of residence.

Singh also expressed that the arrest of Nikhil Gupta, who is implicated in the plots against Sikh activists, marked some progress towards justice even though no arrests have been made yet in Nijjar’s death.

The indictment also reveals that Nikhil Gupta has ties to international drug and weapons trafficking. This further implies the suspected government assassination plot had links to criminal enterprises.

Gupta was apprehended and detained on June 30th in the Czech Republic, merely weeks after Nijjar’s killing in Canada. 

The quick time-frame of his capture indicates law enforcement swiftly tracked down Gupta based on evidence connecting him to the transnational assassination efforts.

He is now being extradited to the U.S. under an established bilateral treaty between the Czech Republic and America. This treaty allowed for a smooth process to bring Gupta to the U.S. to face charges, reflecting cooperation between multiple countries to hold him accountable.

The depths of Gupta’s alleged criminal connections alongside his purported involvement in the plots against Sikh activists suggest far-reaching networks may be supporting or enabling India’s campaign against activists abroad. His prosecution could potentially unravel those networks.

“We don’t know what other information that we’re going to learn from the trial of Mr Gupta,” 

“But hopefully there’s more information that’s going to come out in the future specifically to do with Nijjar’s assassination and who was involved and how this was orchestrated.” Singh said regarding the recent escalations.

This U.S. indictment contributes to a growing body of evidence indicating India’s intelligence agencies are working up efforts to crush dissent among diaspora groups abroad.

Stephanie Carvin, who is a professor of international relations at Carleton university in Ottawa, Canada, gave her two-cents on the matter.

“It seems clear that these two plots were connected. Mr Gupta had knowledge of what is alleged to have happened in British Columbia. And that’s significant because it means these weren’t ‘one-offs’ or inter communal fighting.” 

“The evidence is starting to point to a coordinated plot to attack Sikh activists in several countries,” she said.

Carvin explained that attempting a hit within the very country known for aggressively investigating such plots indicates the Indian agents felt a sense of impunity. They appeared unconcerned about potential consequences, consequences which Carvin noted could entail serving justice through America’s robust law enforcement system.

After Prime Minister Trudeau’s shocking public accusations against India, he faced some criticism back home in Canada for his blunt approach. Some said the sensitive situation could have been handled more discreetly rather than publicly calling out a major world power for assassinating a Canadian citizen.

Critics suggested Trudeau could have used more subdued diplomatic channels to address these allegations with India behind closed doors. Others felt publicly leveling such a bold claim without irrefutable evidence put Canada in an awkward spot diplomatically.

Carvin also addressed Trudeau’s claims, and whether she believes that there is some kind of truth behind it.

“I don’t think any prime minister would come out and make a statement so dramatic like that without some inkling of truth to it.”

“This indictment definitely lends credence to the Canadian case. It will be interesting to see what the international response is going to be to these charges. Maybe, in light of this, Canada won’t feel as isolated as perhaps it did back in September,” she said.

The unveiling of this indictment prompts more questions than answers about India’s alleged global efforts to silence critics. What was the full extent of the assassination campaign? Has the Indian government truly approved of these operations?

With a suspect now detained, India’s activities could face renewed scrutiny. But will other nations actually hold it accountable for violating international law and sovereignty? Or will diplomatic and economic considerations trump justice?

And if, as alleged, Indian agents aggressively pursued targets in Western democracies like Canada and the U.S., what lengths might they go to in order to muzzle dissent within India and other regions under its influence?

Hardeep Singh Nijjar’s assassination shook Canada’s Sikh community. 

But this indictment implies he may have been just one name on a lengthy hit-list. How many other dissidents and activists has this transnational web marked for elimination?

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