The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has identified 15 individuals out of the 45 people allegedly involved in the violence at the Indian High Commission in London during a protest on 19 March.
After releasing their photos more than two months ago, the NIA is now preparing to send their details to the immigration department in order to issue a Look Out Circular (LOC) against them.
In another related development, the NIA has also identified four Khalistan supporters, who allegedly targeted the Indian Consulate in San Francisco on 2 July.
As part of the investigation into this Khalistani attack on Indian High Commission, a separate NIA team is scheduled to visit Canada next month to gather more information.
While the NIA has successfully identified 15 people involved in the London protests, the next challenge lies in persuading the UK government to take action against them.
Unlike India's UAPA (under which the NIA registered an FIR in this case), there is no similar law in the UK that allows for legal action against protesters.
In April, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs directed the NIA to file a fresh case regarding the London protests.
This decision came after preliminary investigations suggested a potential terror link involving Pakistan's ISI.
Furthermore, the ministry instructed the Delhi Police, which initially registered an FIR under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, to hand over the probe to the NIA for further investigation.
In May, the NIA team visited the UK to gather evidence related to the incident. Upon their return to India, they released five videos of the incident and appealed to the public for help in identifying the suspects involved in the attempted vandalism of the High Commission.
The agency received over 500 calls in response to its appeal.
The Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) also assisted the NIA probe team in identifying the suspects, Indian Express reported citing a source in the Ministry of Home Affairs.
“With the help of crowdsourcing of information and other agencies, the NIA has identified 15 attackers and after identifying them, they are in process to issue a LOC against them soon,” an official was quoted as saying in the IE report.
The FIR lodged by Kiran Kumar Vasant Bhosale, the assistant personnel and welfare officer at the High Commission, mentioned the names of three individuals - Avtar Singh alias Khanda, Gurcharan Singh, and Jasvir Singh.
Khanda had passed away in Birmingham in June.
The NIA is coordinating with the relevant department to obtain his death certificate for their case file.
During the course of the investigation, the NIA interrogated Amritpal Singh, the chief of Waris Punjab De, and nine of his associates who were incarcerated in Assam's Dibrugarh jail after it was found that they were in touch with Khanda, who instigated the protesters by shouting anti-India and pro-Khalistan slogans.
Raids were carried out on 1 August by the NIA in Punjab and Haryana to apprehend some of the attackers.
During the raids, a significant amount of digital data containing information about the suspects was seized, according to an NIA official.
In relation to the protest at the Indian Consulate in San Francisco, an NIA team traveled to the US last month.
During their visit, they conducted interviews with security personnel and senior officials from the Indian Consulate.
Additionally, they collected evidence such as CCTV footage and shattered glass windows. The NIA is currently reviewing the CCTV footage to identify more attackers and has also sought assistance from the Bureau of Civil Aviation.
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