India is likely to push the United States to acknowledge evidence against Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun during FBI director Christopher Wray's visit to the country next week.
This comes as US federal prosecutors had earlier last month accused an Indian citizen and an unnamed Indian official of being involved in a foiled plot to assassinate Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on American soil.
FBI Director Christopher Wray, who will be in India on 11-12 December, is expected to discuss some key issues with National Investigation Agency (NIA) chief Dinkar Gupta.
The issues include Khalistani terrorism, gangster nexus, and Pakistan-sponsored terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.
Since assuming his role in 2017, this is Wray's inaugural trip to India, marking the first time an FBI director has visited the country in 12 years.
The NIA had reportedly started preparations and will discuss a range of issues including "cases and evidence" against designated 'individual terrorist' Pannun, founder of the banned Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) outfit; US-based gangster Darmanjot Singh Kahlon, who supplied weapons to eliminate popular Punjabi singer Sidhu Moosewala; and Khalistan supporters who vandalised the Indian Consulate in San Francisco in March, Indian Express reported citing sources.
Wray is also expected to meet with high-ranking representatives from the central intelligence agencies and the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Normally, representatives from the NIA and central intelligence agencies liaise with the FBI's legal attache to discuss criminal cases.
However, this marks the first occasion where they will be presenting the full scope of their evidence and cases directly to the FBI director, according to the sources cited in the IE report.
Wray will be accompanied by the FBI legal attache team, US Embassy personnel, and national security and law enforcement officials.
The White House had confirmed earlier this week that the alleged foiled assassination plot against Pannun was a topic of conversation in meetings held between its visiting Principal Deputy National Security Advisor, Jonathan Finer, and high-ranking officials from India.
On Monday, Finer had discussions with India's National Security Advisor, Ajit Doval, and External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar.
Nikhil Gupta, a 52-year-old Indian citizen, was charged by US federal prosecutors on 29 November for allegedly conspiring with an unidentified Indian government employee to assassinate Pannun.
The US prosecutors informed a Manhattan court that authorities in the Czech Republic had arrested Gupta.
Gupta was transferred from a high-security prison in Prague to the jurisdiction of the United States in mid-November, just days prior to the filing of the indictment.
Describing it as a “matter of concern”, India had announced a high-level probe. Pannun is wanted by Indian probe agencies on various terror charges.
The Financial Times, citing unnamed sources, first reported last month that US authorities foiled a plot to assassinate Pannun, and issued a warning to the Indian government over concerns it was involved in the plot.
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