South Asia and Beyond

Pak Deep State More Likely Suspects, Says Indian Expert

NEW DELHI: Sushant Sareen is not known for mincing his words. In this edition of The Gist, the Senior Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation who ranks among the leading Indian experts on Pakistan and India’s place in the world discusses the issues of Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, the Khalistani terrorist living in the US that Indian agents reportedly tried to assassinate, as well as the growing number of Pakistani terrorists linked to attacks on India who are being ‘taken out’, by mysterious “unknown gunmen” across their homeland. Given Pannun’s open threats against Indian diplomats and Hindu places of worship, there are some serious questions that need to be asked of the bona fides of the Americans, he said. If someone were to issue similar threats against Jews or American diplomats in another country, would the US stay quiet, he asks? Describing The Intercept — the US website which claims it has a secret Indian Ministry of External Affairs memo which links it to the plot to kill Pannun and the death of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a Canadian citizen with clear Khalistani links in Surrey, Canada — as being run by a bunch of “jokers, clowns, idiots, ” he asks: “have you seen the language of that memo?” As for the violent deaths of terrorists in Pakistan linked to attacks on Indian interests, he says he would be delighted to know that Indian agencies, or even ‘Agent Vinod or The Phantom’ were behind this. However, given the fact that India is unlikely to have the footprint, or logistics and assets in place to kill these people in the hinterlands of the country, it is far more likely that the Pakistani deep state is indulging in some cleaning up operations. To know why, and what India should do about the US pressure over Pannun and Nijjar, watch the full interview.

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