India reportedly withdraws 3 out of 15 lookout notices in 2023 London embassy attack News
Paul the Archivist, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
India reportedly withdraws 3 out of 15 lookout notices in 2023 London embassy attack

India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) reportedly withdrew Friday three out of 15 lookout notices against suspects of the attack on the Indian High Commission in London in March 2023, according to Indian national newspaper Indian Express. The alleged attack took place on March 19, 2023, during protests outside the Indian High Commission by alleged separatists called “Khalistanis.” A lookout notice is a formal request issued by Indian law enforcement agencies to monitor and track the movements of a person of interest. It is typically used to prevent a suspect’s escape from the country or to aid in their apprehension.

According to Indian Express, three out of 15 suspects detained in connection to the March 19 attack were handed over to the NIA, but after an extensive investigation, no evidence linking them to the incident was found. Consequently, their lookout notices were withdrawn following discussions with the legal team and NIA Director-General Dinkar Gupta.

NIA’s press release from August 2023 stated that NIA conducted raids at 31 locations in the Indian states of Punjab and Haryana to uncover the conspiracy behind the March 19 attack on the Indian High Commission in London. The aim was to apprehend the attackers as well as their supporters in India and abroad to prevent similar security breaches or threats to Indian interests. The raids reportedly resulted in the seizure of digital data, incriminating documents and evidence related to the attack. The attackers, including Gurcharan Singh, Dal Khalsa, UK; Avtar Singh Khanda of KLF, Jasvir Singh, and their associates—both Indian and foreign nationals—were identified during the investigation. The NIA team also reportedly visited the UK in May 2023 to probe the attack and conducted crowdsourcing to gather information about UK-based entities and individuals involved.

The protest on March 19 was allegedly against India’s operation on an alleged Khalistani leader Amrit Pal Singh, which prompted protestors to remove the national flag of India at the High Commission in London, causing uproar among political leaders and citizens in India. In response, the government of India reduced security at the British High Commission and the envoy’s residence in New Delhi; subsequently, during a follow-up protest, water bottles and smoke flares were thrown at the High Commission in London.

Khalistanis are individuals or groups advocating for an independent Sikh state called Khalistan, primarily in the Punjab region of India.