New Delhi, Jan 27, 2021-
Punjabi actor and singer Deep Sidhu, who is accused of instigating the farmers to hoist a pennant on the Red Fort, did not appear before the National Investigation Agency (NIA) last week after he was summoned in connection with the Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) case, sources said on Wednesday.
Sidhu was seen with a group of agitating farmers while hoisting a pennant on a flagpole at the ramparts of the Red Fort on Tuesday afternoon.
The NIA source said that Sidhu was asked to appear before the agency on January 17 as a witness. “But he did not appear despite a summon issued to him,” the source said.
When asked if the NIA has served any fresh summons to him, the source said, “No fresh summons have been issued to him as of now.”
To a question if the agency will summon him again, the source declined to comment.
The source further said that Sidhu was summoned by the NIA as the probe is based on a suspicious transaction report (STR) compiled by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) highlighting several abnormalities in banking transactions in the last few months which was shared with the anti-terror probe agency.
The NIA had registered a case on December 15 last year after a notification from the government under several sections of the IPC and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). In the FIR, which has been viewed by IANS, the NIA alleged that SFJ, an unlawful association and other Khalistani terrorist outfits including but not limited to Babbar Khalsa International, Khalistan Tiger Force and Khalistan Zindabad Force along with their frontal organisations, have entered into a conspiracy to create an atmosphere of fear and lawlessness and to cause disaffection in people and to incite them towards rising in rebellion against the government.
The FIR also said that huge funds are being collected abroad for on-ground campaign and propaganda against Indian missions in countries like US, UK, Canada, Germany and so forth.
These campaigns are being spearheaded by designated terrorists Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, Paramjit Singh Pamma, Hardeep Singh Nijjar and others.
The NIA FIR also alleged that SFJ and other pro-Khalistan elements involved in this conspiracy, through their incessant social media campaigns and otherwise, are radicalising and recruiting impressionable youth to agitate and undertake terrorist acts for creation of a separate nation of Khalistan after secession from India.
On Tuesday, hundreds of farmers riding on tractors, motorcycles and cars entered into the premises of Red Fort with the tricolour and flags of the farmers’ unions in their hands.
The farmers, who outnumbered the security forces and police personnel, soon climbed on the ramparts of the monument and hoisted their flags there.
Sidhu also did a Facebook Live while hoisting the pennant from the ramparts of the Red Fort. In the video, Sidhu said, “We have only hoisted the Nishan Sahib flag on the Red Fort while exercising our democratic right to protest.”
On Wednesday morning, Sidhu was also chased away from the Haryana-Delhi Singhu border farmer protest site. (Agency)