- The Samosa Caucus, a group of Indian-American Congress members, should have done some soul-searching before issuing unwarranted warnings to India regarding Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Pannun.
- Pannun, a designated Khalistani terrorist, is alleged to be a CIA agent, with concerns about his anti-India activities from American soil.
- The Samosa Caucus’s selective approach in addressing Pannun’s case raised questions about their sincerity in safeguarding Indo-American interests.
- The article highlights many instances of Khalistani threats and attacks on Indian interests, with the Samosa Caucus and the U.S. showing little enthusiasm in responding.
- The article suggests that Hindu-Americans might find more representation and support in the newly formed Hindu Caucus, advocating for Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists across various countries.
I have learned the difference between a cactus and a caucus. On a cactus, the pricks are on the outside – Mo Udall, the former US representative
Udall’s wisecrack may seem a bit harsh, but when it comes to the so-called Samosa Caucus, it hits the nail squarely on the head! An informal group of five Indian-American Congressmen plus the Democratic vice-president, Kamala Harris – who are supposed to maintain parity in Indo-American relationships and build a fair opinion in America on all things Indian – the Samosa gang has been found wanting on just about every issue that has plagued India, Indian-Americans, and Hindus at large.
Did the Samosa gang ever question the administration why a notorious terrorist was being shielded and patronized officially by America?
Recently, the members of this body – Amy Bera, Pramila Jayapal, Ro Khanna, Raja Krishnamoorthi, and Shri Thanedar – were briefed by the U.S. administration about the indictment of an Indian national named Nikhil Gupta in connection with the alleged murder plot of a Khalistani terrorist, Gurpatwant Pannun on American soil, and instead of making a fair case for both India and America, they followed the administration’s instructions to the letter and issued an unwarranted warning to the Indian government. In a joint statement, the Samosa Caucus members – all Democrats – have admonished that the inaction from the Indian government can cause “significant damage” to the “very consequential” partnership between the two nations. They have also demanded that India should never repeat such incidents on American soil.
Obviously, India’s hand was forced, and it reacted statutorily and confirmed having received U.S. inputs on the “nexus between organized criminals, gun runners, terrorists, and others” and said that it takes “such inputs seriously since it impinges on our national security interests as well’. However, questions abound: Did the Samosa Caucus do a fair job in the Pannun case, which is largely based on the testimony of an alleged FBI informant who was supposedly recruited to carry out the said assassination? Did they also address the issue of a notorious terrorist being shielded and patronized officially by America? More importantly, what has been the Caucus’ track record on other such purported violations?
Pannun – a CIA Plant?
Pannun being an American-Canadian citizen, it is only fair that the U.S. protects his rights, but does that also include the right to run anti-India terrorist activities from U.S. soil?
If media reports are to be believed, Indian NSA Ajit Doval has already informed his U.S. counterpart, Jake Sullivan, long ago that India was not taking any action against Pannun just because Indian agencies were aware that he was a CIA agent. Now, admittedly, with Pannun being an American-Canadian citizen, it is only fair that the U.S. protects his rights, but does that also include the right to run anti-India terrorist activities from U.S. soil? Gurpatwant Singh Pannun is a designated Khalistani terrorist declared under UAPA by the Indian Home Ministry. His organization, Sikhs For Justice, was also banned by the Indian government in 2019.
Pannun is known for issuing threats and announcing bounties for anti-India activities. Recently, he made a threat to blow up Air India planes, leading to concerns across the aviation industry as the Khalistanis had indeed carried out one of the worst attacks in aviation history, the Air India Kanishka bombing in 1985. He had also warned to attack the Indian Parliament on December 13, 2023, the 22nd anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attack. In a video message, Pannun threatened to “shake the very foundation of Parliament” in the winter session that is currently underway. True to form, a few miscreants did create a ruckus in the Parliament on December 13, and though their connection with any terrorist organs is yet to be established, Pannun unilaterally announced a Rs 10 lakh reward to the miscreants for their legal aid. He had also announced a $10000 reward to an Australian who had run inside the field during the recent World Cup final match in Ahmedabad, wearing a ‘Free Palestine’ T-shirt. And that after threatening to disrupt the World Cup itself by turning it into a ‘World Terror Cup.’
Unchallenged so far by the American-Canadian authorities, Pannun has let his bile loose on Hindus in Canada, too. “Indo-Canadian Hindus, you have repudiated your allegiance to Canada and the Canadian constitution. Your destination is India. Leave Canada and go to India. Pro-Khalistan Sikhs have always been loyal to Canada. They have always sided with Canada and uphold the laws and constitution,” Pannun said in a video that went viral on social media.
While none of Pannun’s threats have materialized on the ground, his following amongst his fellow terrorists remains high. And his gall increases by the day, considering now that the entire American security apparatus has thrown its weight around him to mollycoddle and protect him, come what may. Is there a possibility of Pannun inspiring his fellow anarchists to hit Indian and Hindu interests in India and America? Entirely possible… And what’s America and the Samosa Caucus doing to rein in his diatribe? Nothing…
America’s Inaction Plan
In 2001, America reacted ferociusly when its sovereignty was challenged, even if it meant disrespecting other countries’ jurisdictions… yet, when it comes to curbing the activities of India’s enemies on American soil, the rules of engagement seem completely different.
In 2001, the world witnessed how ferociously America reacted when its sovereignty was challenged on 9/11, as it subsequently went around the world hunting down its enemies in distant pockets of other unfriendly countries, even if it meant disrespecting their jurisdiction, authority, and sovereignty. The way America went after Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan and Qasam Soleimani in Iran to protect its interests is the stuff that launched a thousand Hollywood movies. And yet, when it comes to extending the same courtesy to its ally in India by curbing the activities of its enemies on American soil, the rules of engagement are deemed completely different.
Ever since Pannun came up with his mischief of a Referendum voting on Khalistan, his supporters have unleashed a wave of anti-Hindu, anti-India hatred on the streets of Canada and even America. Hindu temples were vandalized. On multiple occasions, even Indian consulates came directly under their vicious attack. The situation got even worse in 2023 when a Khalistani separatist leader, Amritpal Singh, was on the run in India, and central agencies worked with Punjab Police to arrest him. Indian Consular offices and embassies faced threats from the pro-Khalistani elements. Indian flags were desecrated; diplomats were heckled by pro-Khalistani elements, with their photos being pasted on derogatory posters – practically painting a target on the back of their heads. Yet America reacted with zero enthusiasm. Neither did the Samosa Caucus speak against this naked hatred paraded on their streets, nor did they put any pressure on the Biden administration for a quick resolution and arrest of the perps.
Neither the Samosa Caucus nor the American security establishment members have the right to take the moral high ground on the Pannun matter now. Did any of them visit the defaced temples? Nope. Did they take any cognizance and criticize in the strictest terms when Khalistanis desecrated the Indian consulate? Not at all.
Speaking of moral high ground, did the Samosa Caucus draw the attention of the Biden administration towards the two U.S. officials who were recently caught bribing Spain’s secret service officers? Indeed, at least two U.S. agents stationed in the U.S. Embassy in Madrid were directly involved in recruiting spies of Spain’s Secret Service CNI and have been discreetly expelled from Spain. The revelation that U.S. officials were bribing two agents from their NATO ally, Spain’s CNI intelligence service, to provide classified information has led to diplomatic friction between Madrid and Washington. What do they have to say about this openly hostile act? Nothing…
Hence, naturally, the Samosa Caucus’ warnings to India are regarded as nothing beyond regurgitating and parroting the Biden administration’s official lame stance of protecting the Khalistanis and their asset-in-chief, Pannun.
A Clumsy Regime-Change Attempt?
Is the Pannun drama simply a clumsy plot to destabilize and topple a popular government in India?
There are too many coincidences in the Pannun plot. First, the Financial Times writes a convoluted report on India’s plot to kill Pannun. Then, Time magazine gives way too many column inches to Pannun in a lengthy interview. All this is followed by the Justice Department releasing details of an arrested Indian in a plot to kill Pannun. If you plot all these data points – from Nikhil Gupta hiring an undercover FBI agent to kill Pannun to Canada accusing India of killing Nijjar – “everything came to fruition months before the Lok Sabha elections scheduled in 2024“. Is all this drama then simply an elaborate ploy by the global regime-change activists looking to destabilize and topple a popular government in India? After all, similar attempts by the American deep state are also in motion in neighboring Bangladesh.
Let’s also not forget the pathetic attempts of the current U.S. administration to embarrass PM Modi during his last visit to the U.S. by fielding a Pakistani-origin reporter “to pose the cleverly manufactured question echoing the claims of Islamists and left-liberals, alleging persecution of Muslims in India.”
When evaluating the veracity of this Pannun-Gupta plot, one should start by first looking at the not-so-stellar record of the American security agencies when it comes to protecting Indian interests from Khalistani terrorism.
Let’s go back to the hazy security mishmash of the Air India Kanishka bombing of 1985 and its prime suspect Lal Singh who was then a member of the radical Khalistani outfit International Sikh Youth Federation (ISYF) and operating out of the U.S. and Canada before coming to India. Remember, the 1985 Air India Jumbo Kanishka bombing killed 329 passengers on board and remains one of the worst-investigated aviation disasters in the world. That same year, Lal Singh was also instrumental in hatching another plot to assassinate the then-Indian PM Rajiv Gandhi during his visit to the U.S.
For this assassination attempt, Lal Singh and his bunch of terrorists received training in arms and explosives at a ‘Mercenary School’ run in Birmingham, Alabama, by a U.S. Army Veteran, Frank Camper, who incidentally was also an ‘FBI Informant.’ Eventually, the plan to kill the PM was scuttled by the FBI, and the PM’s visit was called off. Rajiv Gandhi said he found it incredible that the U.S. permitted such training to Sikh terrorists on its soil, while India’s foreign ministry found America’s attitude as “deplorable & disappointing.” In diplomatic-speak, Indians had accused the U.S. of harboring terrorists in 1985.
The 1985 Khalistani terrorist case was just as bewildering as the current Panun case. While the FBI did thwart the attack on the Indian PM, some of the terrorists, including Lal Singh, miraculously disappeared, only to surface in Pakistan a few years later. He reached India in 1991 to carry out more terror attacks and assassinations with the same kind of weapons and explosives in which he was trained in the U.S. but was caught by the local police, and more mayhem was averted.
But there is much more to this story.
The arms and explosives that were to be used by Lal Singh for the terror attacks were routed to India via Pakistan, ostensibly funded by Khalistanis from Canada, US, and the U.K. – most notably by Bhajan Singh Bhinder aka Iqbal Choudhary of the U.S. While searching for the weapons, Bhinder fell into the trap of a U.S. Customs undercover operation, while they were investigating the drug cartels being run by truckers between the U.S. & Canada. Mysteriously, just before the border agents, posing as weapons dealers, were to arrest Bhinder, he was tipped off by some ‘insider.’ Bhinder quickly aborted the deal, saying he got a ‘funny feeling.’ One can only guess as to which agency might have done the tipping off!
It’s an altogether different story that when Lal Singh got arrested, Bhinder pivoted to become a human rights activist by forming the ‘Organizations for Minorities of India’ (OFMI), which has subsequently spawned a hydra-headed web of disinformation outlets and hate peddlers working against India and Hindus, including the IAMC, JFA and Equality Labs.
The point is that FBI Informants and American Undercover Agents have been a source of labyrinthine plots, tangled webs, and fallacious chain of events whenever it has involved Khalistani terror plots against Indian interests. Surely, the Samosa Caucus could have done more by weighing in all the previous evidence in such matters rather than unilaterally holding the Indian government to task. Meanwhile, PM Modi has publicly assured that all the allegations on the Indian diplomatic and security apparatus will be thoroughly investigated.
Frankly, Hindu Americans might be better off ditching the Samosa gang altogether and instead, putting their faith in the newly formed Hindu Caucus spearheaded by the Democratic congressman from Michigan, Shri Thanedar, and formally inaugurated by Republican lawmakers Pete Sessions and Elise Stefanik, a body that aims to represent Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists from various countries including India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, the UK, and the Netherlands.
 Singh, Vikrant. 2023. “’Investigate Pannun plot or…’, USA’s ‘Samosa Caucus’ issues warning to India.” WION. https://www.wionews.com/world/investigate-pannun-plot-or-usas-samosa-caucas-issues-warning-to-india-670160.
 Kakar, Harsha. 2023. “Canada may have bitten off more than it can chew.” The Statesman. https://www.thestatesman.com/opinion/canada-may-have-bitten-off-more-than-it-can-chew-1503225711.html.
 FP. 2023. “K-terrorist Gurpatwant Pannun, whose wellbeing is prime concern for US & Canada , wants to blow India’s Parliament.” Firstpost. https://www.firstpost.com/world/k-terrorist-gurpatwant-pannun-whose-wellbeing-is-prime-concern-for-us-canada-wants-to-blow-indias-parliament-13471442.html.
 ET. 2023. “India’s stern warning to Khalistani Pannun on Air India threat: ‘Will certainly take measures….’” The Economic Times. https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/india/indias-stern-warning-to-khalistani-pannun-on-air-india-threat-will-certainly-take-measures/videoshow/105121289.cms?from=mdr.
 FP. 2023. “Did US foil bid to kill Gurpatwant Singh Pannun? Was India involved?” Firstpost. https://www.firstpost.com/explainers/us-foil-assassination-attempt-gurpatwant-singh-pannun-india-involvement-hardeep-singh-nijjar-canada-13419832.html.
 Opindia. 2023. “Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun announces legal aid of Rs 10 lakh for Parliament attack accused.” OpIndia. https://www.opindia.com/2023/12/khalistani-terrorist-gurpatwant-singh-pannun-announces-legal-aidof-rs-10-lakh-for-parliament-attack-accused/.
 Opindia. 2023. “SFJ’s Pannun declares $10000 reward to arrested Australian man who ran inside playing field wearing ‘Free Palestine’ T-shirt.” OpIndia. https://www.opindia.com/2023/11/sfj-pannun-10000-reward-to-arrested-australian-who-ran-inside-field-during-world-cup-final-match-wearing-free-palestine-t-shirt/.
 Opindia. 2023. “Gurpatwant Singh Pannun issues threats to ICC Cricket World Cup.” OpIndia. https://www.opindia.com/2023/09/gurpatwant-singh-pannun-issues-threats-to-icc-cricket-world-cup/.
 Sharma, Heena. 2023. “Nijjar death: Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun threatens Hindus in Canada.” WION. https://www.wionews.com/india-news/banned-separatist-group-sfj-threatens-to-shut-down-indian-consulates-next-week-637580.
 Gonzalez, Miguel. 2023. “Spain expels two US spies for infiltrating secret service.” EL PAÍS English. https://english.elpais.com/spain/2023-12-08/spain-expels-two-us-spies-for-infiltrating-secret-service.html.
 Anurag. 2023. “The USA is protecting anti-India terrorists like Gurpatwant Pannun: How does that reflect on India-US relations.” OpIndia. https://www.opindia.com/2023/11/pannun-kill-plot-us-govt-confirms-they-are-actively-protecting-khalistani-terrorists-and-allowing-them-to-threaten-india/.
 Kumar, Utpal. 2023. “Regime change in Bangladesh? Biden’s Arab Spring desire in Dhaka no better than Obama’s Middle Eastern nightmare.” Firstpost. https://www.firstpost.com/opinion/regime-change-in-bangladesh-bidens-arab-spring-desire-in-dhaka-no-better-than-obamas-middle-eastern-nightmare-13501462.html.
 Mohta, Jhankar. 2023. “Meet Sabrina Siddiqui, ‘journalist’ who got a befitting reply from PM Modi about ‘minorities’ in India.” OpIndia. https://www.opindia.com/2023/06/meet-sabrina-siddiqui-journalist-who-got-a-befitting-reply-from-pm-modi-about-minorities-in-india/.
 Disinfo Labs. 2019. “Twitter thread on Khalistan.” Twitter. https://twitter.com/DisinfoLab/status/1735161562183458861.
 The Seattle Times, July 9, 1995; Secret Agent Man: Trainer Of Guerrillas Was An FBI Informant — That Career Ended With Conviction In Bomb Plot: https://archive.seattletimes.com/archive/?date=19950709&slug=2130375
 HT. 2023. “’Intimidation…’: PM Modi’s Bold Response To U.S. Claims About Pannun’s Assassination Plot.” Hindustan Times. https://www.hindustantimes.com/videos/news/intimidation-pm-modis-bold-response-to-u-s-claims-about-pannuns-assassination-plot-101703066512334.html.
 Chakraborty, Prateek. 2023. “US Congresspeople announces creation of Hindu caucus.” India Today. https://www.indiatoday.in/world/story/republican-congresspeople-hindu-caucus-us-house-creation-2478134-2023-12-20.