Amidst escalating concerns over the escalating activities of pro-Khalistani elements in the United Kingdom, the UK’s Security Minister, Tom Tugendhat, has revealed a new funding initiative of £95,000 (approximately ₹1 crore) to enhance the country’s capabilities in countering “pro-Khalistan extremism”. This significant announcement comes against the backdrop of attacks on the Indian High Commission in London earlier this year.
The British high commission shared this development during Tugendhat’s three-day visit to India, which commenced on Thursday. The new funding underscores the UK government’s commitment to addressing the issue and strengthening its cooperation with India in this regard.
Tugendhat’s visit to India aims to fortify bilateral collaboration on security initiatives and participate in the G20 anti-corruption ministerial meeting in Kolkata. During his visit to Delhi, he engaged in discussions with India’s External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval.
According to the British high commission’s statement, Tugendhat, during his meeting with Minister Jaishankar, unveiled the new funding initiative to bolster the UK’s capabilities in tackling “pro-Khalistan extremism”. The £95,000 investment will augment the government’s understanding of the threat posed by such extremism, working in tandem with ongoing efforts between the UK and India through their joint extremism task force.
Highlighting the significance of the India-UK partnership, Tugendhat emphasized, “A deeper partnership between our two nations means we can more effectively tackle the security threats we both face. I’m committed to working together to enhance our understanding of and capabilities against extremism—whatever form it takes.”
India’s External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson, Arindam Bagchi, commented on the British minister’s announcement, noting that it’s the UK’s internal matter and refrained from further comment. However, he reiterated India’s stance on the importance of addressing extremists and radicals to ensure security.
Tugendhat’s visit and the announced funding reaffirm the shared commitment of both nations to address security challenges collaboratively. This move also reflects the gravity of the situation, underscoring the UK’s dedication to safeguarding the security and interests of its diplomatic missions.
The joint efforts to counter “pro-Khalistan extremism” reflect the ongoing conversation between India and the UK regarding the security of the Indian High Commission in London, a matter of paramount importance to both countries. As the partnership between these nations strengthens, the focus remains on addressing security threats, ensuring diplomatic safety, and fortifying the comprehensive strategic partnership between India and the UK.
Sources By Agencies