Chandigarh (IANS): Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday hailed the Central government’s decision to declare the foreign-based Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) as an unlawful association, describing it as the first step towards protecting the nation from secessionists.
Though the outfit deserved to be treated as a terrorist organisation, the Centre had at least taken a long-overdue stand against the SFJ, which had unleashed a wave of terror in Punjab in recent years, he said in a statement here.
With this step, the Centre had finally shown its much-needed intent to crack down on the organisation, which was overtly being backed by Pakistan’s [intelligence agency] ISI in its conspiratorial campaign over ‘Sikh Referendum 2020’, launched in 2014, he added.
Amarinder Singh, however, asserted the Central government would have to take more proactive measures to aggressively crackdown on the SFJ and its affiliate operatives in the interest of national security.
The SFJ’s activities went beyond being “unlawful” and posed a major threat to the very existence of the nation, he said, calling for an all-out war against the organisation.
Recent years had seen blatant attempts by the SFJ to radicalise, fund and motivate some poor and gullible youth of Punjab into committing acts of arson and violence, Amarinder Singh pointed out, adding that the outfit had also been making efforts to enlist the support of gangsters and radicals in the state.
Punjab Police in the last three years had registered several criminal cases against such youth as well as SFJ leaders and operatives based in various countries and working under the command of SFJ promoters, operating from the US, Canada, Britain and Malaysia.