The Ahmedabad Police have registered a first information report against Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, the chief of banned outfit Sikhs for Justice, for allegedly issuing terror threats to the cricket World Cup, scheduled to start at the city’s Narendra Modi Stadium on October 5, PTI reported.
The cyber crime branch of the Ahmedabad Police have stated in the FIR that several people across India have received a pre-recorded message on their phones where Pannu allegedly says that he would turn the World Cup into “World Terror Cup”.
The purported voice messages had been sent from a phone number with a country code of the United Kingdom, the FIR mentioned, according to PTI. The threats were allegedly issued in response to the killing of Khalistan separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar which has sparked off a diplomatic crisis between India and Canada.
“We are going to take revenge of Shaheed Nijjar’s assassination,” Pannu allegedly said in the message, according to the FIR. “We are going to use ballots against your bullets. We are going to use vote against your violence. Remember 5th October, it will not be World Cricket Cup it will be beginning of World Terror Cup... message from Gurpatwant Singh Pannu.”
The police have booked Pannu on charges of conspiracy and spreading hatred under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Information Technology Act.
Pannu has already been designated a terrorist by India in 2020 and faces 22 criminal cases in Punjab. His organisation, Sikhs For Justice, was banned by the Indian government in 2019.
Last week, after Hindi channel ABP News aired an interview of Pannu, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had issued an advisory asking TV channels not to provide platform to persons who have been charged with serious crimes such as terrorism or have links to banned organisations.