• Tuesday, May 28, 2024


India’s response in Pannun case satisfactory, says Eric Garcetti

Garcetti expressed satisfaction with India’s actions thus far but underscored that many steps remain in addressing the issue. (Photo: X/@USAmbIndia)

By: Vivek Mishra

US Ambassador to India, Eric Garcetti, has said that the US is “satisfied” with India’s response to allegations regarding its officials’ involvement in an alleged plot to assassinate Sikh separatist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on American soil.

Speaking at an event organised by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), a think tank, Garcetti emphasised the significance of this issue in testing the resilience of bilateral relations, saying, “When I was referring to a relationship that might have bumps along the road, this would be potentially the first big fight in a relationship.”

In November last year, US federal prosecutors charged Indian national Nikhil Gupta in connection with the foiled plot.

Pannun, wanted in India on terror charges and holding dual citizenship of the US and Canada, has been designated as a terrorist by India’s home ministry under anti-terror law.

Garcetti highlighted the ongoing nature of the criminal case, stating, “There’s an indictment that’s been brought. And if there is any connection to State actors in that, there has to be accountability.”

Regarding India’s response to the situation, Garcetti said, “So, there’s been a commission of inquiry that India has brought together and that we expect, while we do the criminal case that is about American justice, that there need to be consequences and shared information.”

He expressed satisfaction with India’s actions thus far but underscored that many steps remain in addressing the issue.

Garcetti also addressed concerns about human rights in India, saying, “It is not America’s responsibility to fix India. It is America’s responsibility to engage with India, to promote our interests, and also to reflect our values.”

He emphasised the importance of dialogue and support if requested, stating, “America is here to support and help in any way if asked.”

In discussing India’s progress in certain human rights areas, Garcetti said, “You probably haven’t heard the narrative, like, that India is more advanced than us on human rights. But when it comes to transgender rights, they are.”

He concluded by reaffirming the US commitment to engaging with India while addressing shared concerns and promoting mutual interests.


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