America was taking allegations against an Indian national over his alleged involvement in orchestrating the attempted murder of Sikh leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said.
“I can say that this is something we take very seriously. A number of us have raised this directly with the Indian government in past weeks,” the top US diplomat told reporters in the Israeli capital Tel Aviv on Thursday.
“The government [of India] announced today that it was conducting an investigation, and that’s good and appropriate, and we look forward to seeing the results.”
Earlier, National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby spoke in the same wavelength, saying that the country takes allegations “very seriously”.
“At the same time, we take this very seriously. These allegations and this investigation, we take very seriously,” he said during a press briefing.
Earlier this week, the US Justice Department said that an Indian government official directed an unsuccessful plot to assassinate a Sikh separatist on US soil.
“The defendant conspired from India to assassinate, right here in New York City, a US citizen of Indian origin who has publicly advocated for the establishment of a sovereign state for Sikhs,” Damian Williams, the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, said in a statement.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan said Nikhil Gupta, 52, worked with the Indian government employee, whose responsibilities included security and intelligence, to assassinate a New York City resident who advocated for a Sikh sovereign state in northern India.
Prosecutors did not name the Indian official or the target. Gupta was arrested by Czech authorities in June and is awaiting extradition. He could not be reached for comment.