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Did The Parliament Security Breach Have a ‘Khalistani Connection'?

While several social media posts made that claim, primary investigation shows there was no Khalistan connection.

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WebQoof
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On 13 December, several intruders jumped into the Lok Sabha from the visitors' gallery and set off coloured smoke canisters during the Winter Session proceedings.

Shortly after the news broke, several social media users started linking the attack to the founder of Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) and separatist leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun.

What are the claims?: There are three versions of the claims going viral on social media platforms.

  • Some have suspected a Khalistani connection to the attack by pointing out that "yellow colour gas bombs" were used.

  • The second version of the claim points out that the most important clue is the resemblance of colour of the smoke and the Khalistani flag.

  • Several users have said that that since Pannun had warned about attacking the Parliament on or before 13 December, he must be behind the breach.

  • An archive of the post can be found here.

    (Source: X(formerly Twitter)/Screenshot)

(More archives of similar claims can be found here and here.)

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What is the truth?: As of when this report was being written, no links between those involved in the security breach and Pannun had been established.

  • Sources in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) confirmed that no such links had been established at of the time of publication.

About the Investigation

According to police sources, the accused stayed in Gurugram's Sector 6. All the accused wanted to enter the Lok Sabha but only two of them had passes.

  • Five people have been nabbed so far, and the sixth person remains at large at this point.

  • The six accused reportedly knew each other for around six years and were connected on social media.

  • The security agencies are trying to establish if the accused were "instructed" by any person or organisation to breach the security.

  • As per initial interrogation by the Delhi Police, the four accused were unhappy about the state of the country and were upset over issues like price rise, and unemployment, sources told The Quint.

Who Were Involved in the Breach?

Neelam: She was a civil services aspirant and was arrested from outside the Parliament. Neelam belongs to Haryana and her father owns a sweet shop. According to her brother, Neelam has several degrees such as BA, MA, BEd, MEd, CTET, and MPhil, but was still unemployed.

  • Neelam told the media that "they are not associated with any organisation and took the step since the government is committing atrocities against citizens."

Sagar Sharma: He is one of the accused whose visitors' pass carried the signature of Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Mysuru, Pratap Simha. Sharma belongs to Lucknow and is an e-rickshaw driver. Sharma identifies himself as a writer and poet on his social media handles.

Manoranjan: Hailing from Karnataka's Mysuru, he is said to be one of the two people who jumped into the Parliament. Manoranjan's father Devaraj Gowda said that his son was an engineer by training.

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Amol Shinde: Shinde, who is 25-years-old, was arrested from outside the Parliament. He is from Maharashtra's Latur and was seen setting off smoke canisters and raising slogans while the security personnel dragged him. Shinde was reportedly preparing for police and army recruitment exams.

Lalit Jha: According to sources, Jha was also present at the spot where Neelam and Anmol were arrested. Jha, who hails from Bihar, is still absconding.

Apart from these, two more people have been identified as Vishal Sharma and his wife. Both of them have been detained. All the four other accused who have been arrested were staying at Sharma's Gurugram residence.

Conclusion: As of publication of this report, no link with the Khalistan movement or Pannun had been established in any investigation. The copy will be updated as more information comes out.

(Not convinced of a post or information you came across online and want it verified? Send us the details on WhatsApp at 9540511818, or e-mail it to us at webqoof@thequint.com and we'll fact-check it for you. You can also read all our fact-checked stories here.)

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Topics:  Indian Parliament   Fact Check   Webqoof 

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