Responding to a question on whether the National Investigation Agency (NIA) summoned farmers protesting against the new agriculture law, the Centre on Wednesday, 10 February, told the Rajya Sabha.
The response came from Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy.
The question on was asked by Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, GC Chandrashekhar and Phulo Dev Netam in the Rajya Sabha.
The NIA, however, is reported to have issued notices to several individuals in Punjab in connection with an FIR against US-based outfit Sikhs For Justice.
One of them is farm union leader Baldev Singh Sirsa. In response to the summons, he said that this is part of the government’s attempts to derail the protests.
The other people, whose notices The Quint has accessed, include a tourist bus operator, a nut bolt manufacturer and a cable TV operator. However, notices have been sent to other people as well, including a journalist and a few people working for NGOs.
The NIA, on 19 January, clarified that the seven people associated with the farmers’ protests, were questioned as “witnesses” and not suspects. They were questioned in connection with a case related to the Sikhs for Justice (SFJ).
In its summons sent to around 40 people, NIA said that the organisation and its affiliates “appear they are acquainted with the circumstances of this case”.
NIA had filed a case on 15 December, probing the funding of alleged Khalistani terrorist groups. NIA alleged that large amounts of funds being collected by alleged Khalistani terrorist outfits are being sent through NGOs to pro-Khalistani elements based in India.
(With inputs from PTI.)
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