On Friday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson during his India visit said that the United Kingdom would not welcome people who planned to use the UK’s legal systems to evade the law in India. Johnson was speaking about the Khalistani extremists living in the UK along with financial criminals like Nirav Modi and Vijay Mallya. The British Prime Minister added that his country had set up an anti-extremist task force to help India.
“The UK is sensitive to India’s concerns and there will be zero tolerance to the issue of Khalistanis. We’ve set up an anti-extremist task force to help India. UK govt ordered extradition”, he said on April 22 during his visit to India. India has been repeatedly seeking action against pro-Pakistan Sikh radicals operating from the UK.
#WATCH| On being asked about Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya &Khalistani extremists,British PM Boris Johnson said,”We’ve set up an anti-extremist task force to help India…UK govt ordered extradition…We don’t welcome people who want to use our legal system to evade the law in India.” pic.twitter.com/rK3nV9xRG2— ANI (@ANI) April 22, 2022
Along with Canada, United Kingdom is one of the biggest hubs of Khalistani extremists. Khalistani outfits, including the banned Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) led by extremist Gurpatwant Singh Pannu have regularly held protests outside the Indian High Commission in London, some of them violent. Khalistanis had even planned voting for an independent Khalistan in England on October 31 last year, but very few people turned up to vote. These activities of Khalistanis in the UK may no longer be possible now with Boris Johnson promising to crack down on these activities using the newly created task force.
Speaking further on the issue of economic offenders, Johnson stated that the country’s objective is to bring back those economic fugitives who are wanted in India to face justice in the country. “We don’t welcome people who want to use our legal system to evade the law in India”, he added as he indicated that he was very sensitive to Indian concerns in this regard and that he would see what he could do.
Meanwhile, the two countries also exchanged views on several key issues, including the India-UK defence partnership and a free trade agreement (FTA) that is expected to be finalized by Diwali this year. “The agreement could double our trade and investment by the end of the decade”, he noted. According to the reports, the duo exchanged a total of two Government-to-Government MoUs and four non-governmental MoUs.
The issue of the Russia-Ukraine war was also raised on the occasion. The UK Prime Minister did not pressure India and stated that India’s position on Russia was well known and was not going to change. He also said that the whole world is obliged to do more with all that is happening around the world and in Ukraine. “India has a historic relationship with Russia and everybody respects it”, he added. However, India reiterated its appeal for an immediate ceasefire and resolution of the problem through dialogue.
Earlier today, Johnson had appreciated the depth of friendship between the UK and India and had said, “As India celebrates its 75th year of independence, I’m hugely optimistic about the depth of the friendship between our countries, and the security and prosperity it can deliver for our peoples for generations to come”.
As India celebrates its 75th year of independence, I’m hugely optimistic about the depth of the friendship between our countries, and the security and prosperity it can deliver for our peoples for generations to come.— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) April 22, 2022
UK PM Boris Johnson arrived in India on Thursday on his two-day state visit. Yesterday he spent his time in Gujarat, visited JCB’s Bulldozer manufacturing plant, MK Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram and traveled to Delhi in the evening. The meeting between the two leaders in Delhi came on the final day of Johnson’s two-day trip to India, which had been delayed due to COVID.