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SOURCE: ANI

The White House on Monday (local time) refrained from commenting on the question of the plot to kill pro-Khalistani terrorist, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun came up in National Security Adviser (NSA) Jake Sullivan’s meetings in India and if it will be part of the discussions. In a White House press briefing, National Security Spokesperson John Kirby said, “I don’t have more to add on the conversations that Jake Sullivan is having.

He is still over there having these conversations” Kirby said that the main focus of his visit was to look for ways to deepen the US-India bilateral relationship, particularly when it comes to emerging technology. “He is still over there having these conversations. But the main focus of his visit, as I said, was to look for ways to deepen the US-India bilateral relationship, particularly when it comes to emerging technology. I don’t have anything more to add to the conversations….” said John Kirby.

Sullivan’s visit to Delhi, from June 17 to 18, marks the first trip to India by a senior Biden Administration official after the Modi government came to power for the third term. Earlier in the day, US NSA Sullivan and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval attended the annual meeting of the Initiative on Critical and Emerging Technology (iCET) between the two countries. The delegation-level talks were held in the national capital.

This was the second iCET meeting between the two countries and is being held over two days on June 17 and 18. Following the Critical and Emerging Technology initiative talks in New Delhi, India and the US released a joint fact sheet which highlighted the progress on MQ-9B acquisition, and on other defence cooperation sectors between the two nations. The key points that were highlighted in the fact sheet were Significant Funding Commitments, NASA-ISRO Collaboration, Defence Space Technology, Telecommunications Advances, Semiconductor Partnership, Quantum and AI Cooperation amongst many others.

Meanwhile, Indian national Nikhil Gupta is suspected by the US of involvement in an unsuccessful plot to kill the India-designated pro-Khalistani terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on American soil. Gupta has been extradited to the United States from the Czech Republic late last week. He will be produced at the Federal courthouse in New York on Monday (local time). The discovery of alleged assassination plots against Pannun in the US has brought the India-US relationship under the spotlight.

New Delhi has firmly dissociated itself from the plot against Pannun, saying it is against the Indian government’s policy. It has said it would formally investigate security concerns raised by Washington. The US Justice Department has alleged that Gupta (52) is an associate of the Indian government and that together they and others helped plot the assassination of Pannun in New York City. In November last year, US Justice Department officials announced charges against Gupta after he was arrested in June 2023 in the Czech Republic.

They said Gupta would face extradition to New York. Pannun is an India-designated terrorist who holds American and Canadian citizenship. Earlier in November, the US Justice Department unsealed an indictment against an Indian national for his alleged involvement in a foiled plot to assassinate a US-based leader of the Sikh Separatist Movement and a citizen in New York.