Spy companies accused of tip-off that led to Jagtar Singh Johal arrest

Spy companies accused of tip-off that led to Jagtar Singh Johal arrest


I5 and MI6 have been accused of supplying data that led to the kidnapping and alleged torture of a Scottish Sikh.

Jagtar Singh Johal, from Dumbarton, was in Punjab in northern India for his wedding ceremony in 2017 when his household say he was arrested and bundled into an unmarked automotive.

The 35-year-old stated he has been detained and subjected to torture, together with electrical shocks, and faces the demise penalty over his activism and campaigning for Sikh human rights.

The very least we are able to count on of our Authorities is to not share intelligence that results in us being detained and tortured abroad

Now attorneys for Mr Johal have lodged a grievance after human rights group Reprieve recognized his case amongst anonymised particulars revealed within the annual report by the UK’s investigatory powers commissioner.

It units out how MI5 and MI6 handed details about a British nationwide to overseas authorities who then detained and tortured them, which matches particulars in Mr Johal’s case.

This 12 months the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention decided that Mr Johal’s detention “lacks authorized foundation”, was primarily based on “discriminatory grounds” owing to his Sikh religion and his “standing as a human rights defender”.

The opinion stated he was “subjected to torture” and that he was “focused due to his actions as a Sikh practitioner and supporter and due to his activism in writing public posts calling for accountability for alleged actions dedicated towards Sikhs by the authorities”.

The UN concluded that the suitable decision could be to launch Mr Johal instantly and accord him an enforceable proper to compensation and different reparations, in accordance with worldwide legislation.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated he had raised Mr Johal’s case throughout a visit to India in April this 12 months.

Gurpreet Singh Johal, Jagtar’s brother, stated: “I by no means imagined the scenes I’d seen in horror films of individuals being kidnapped by a overseas authorities and violently tortured may develop into a actuality for somebody in my household.

“When it did, I anticipated our Authorities would do every thing in its energy to save lots of my brother. The twist is that not solely has our Authorities deserted considered one of its personal residents, it’s actively betrayed him.”

He stated his brother’s blogs solely uncovered the Indian authorities’s mistreatment of Sikhs, including: “The UK needs to be championing free speech around the globe, not aiding repressive regimes to torture and lock up British nationals who dare to criticise them. We’d like solutions and accountability to ensure no different British household is put by way of this dwelling hell.”

Maya Foa, the director of Reprieve, stated: “It was already a scandal that, when a British nationwide was snatched off the road by Indian authorities whereas on his honeymoon, Boris Johnson left him to rot for 5 years earlier than lastly admitting he was being arbitrarily detained.

“Now it seems the UK Authorities hasn’t simply been negligent, however could have unlawfully enabled his abduction and brutal torture by way of a tip-off to the Indian authorities.

“The very least we are able to count on of our Authorities is to not share intelligence that results in us being detained and tortured abroad.

“We’re speaking a couple of British blogger who United Nations consultants say has been focused as a result of he spoke out towards abuses dedicated towards the Sikh neighborhood in India – the UK Authorities should lastly convey him house.”

The household’s MP, Martin Docherty-Hughes, mentioned Mr Johal’s case on the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland radio programme on Tuesday.

The SNP MP stated: “What I discover extraordinary is the current Prime Minister, just a few weeks in the past earlier than Parliament went into recess, made it clear that he believes that Jagtar’s detention is unfair.”

Mr Docherty-Hughes stated his constituent has by no means confronted any costs, including: “He’s now been languishing in an Indian jail for practically 5 years come November.

“That claims to me that there isn’t a case to reply.”

An FCDO spokesman stated: “It might be inappropriate for us to remark whereas authorized proceedings are energetic.”

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