Glasgow Gurdwara general secretary condemns Indian envoy's denial of entry: ‘Disoderly behaviour’
Indian High Commissioner to the UK, Vikram Doraiswami at the Glasgow Gurdwara was disrupted by three people from areas outside Scotland on Saturday.
Prabhjot Kaur, General Secretary, Glasgow Gurdwara, has condemned the incident, where Indian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Vikram Doraiswami was stopped from attending a planned interaction at the religious site and termed it "disorderly behaviour."
Kaur said that Police Scotland arrived at the site and took cognizance of the matter after the incident occurred at the Glasgow Gurdwara. She stressed that Gurdwara is open to people from all communities and they welcome everyone openly according to the principles of their faith.
Speaking to ANI, Prabhjot Kaur said, “An incident occurred on September 29, 2023, at Glasgow Gurdwara where the Indian High Commissioner was on a personal visit facilitated by a member of the Scottish Parliament. Certain unknown individuals from outside the Glasgow area attempted to disrupt this visit, following which the visiting party decided to leave the premises after the departure of the visitors.”
She further said, “These unruly individuals continued to disturb the Gurdwara congregation. Police Scotland was in attendance thereafter and have taken cognizance of the matter. Glasgow Gurdwara strongly condemns such disorderly behaviour to disrupt the peaceful proceedings of the Sikh place of worship. The Gurdwara is open to people from all communities and backgrounds and we welcome everyone openly as per our principles of faith.”
This comes after a planned interaction of the Indian High Commissioner to the UK, Vikram Doraiswami at the Glasgow Gurdwara was disrupted by three people from areas outside Scotland. Police Scotland has responded to the incident and said that an inquiry is ongoing to establish the full circumstances around the incident.
“On September 29, 2023, three persons- all from areas outside Scotland-deliberately disrupted a planned interaction organised by the Gurudwara Committee for the community, the High Commissioner and the Consul General of India. This interaction was to discuss community and consular issues," the Indian High Commission in London said in a statement on Saturday.
"The organizers included senior community leaders, ladies and Committee members, and a member of the Scottish Parliament. They were threatened and abused by these elements. In an effort to prevent any potential altercation, the HC and CG decided to leave the premises shortly upon their arrival," it added.
The Indian High Commission said it reported the incident to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the Metropolitan Police. Multiple community organisations, including the organisers, have formally regretted the incident and have urged the authorities to take action against the culprits, according to the statement.
"One of the non-local extremist elements attempted to violently force open the HC's car door - a matter that will require suitable police consideration. It is due to the quick reaction of one of the organizers, who physically intervened at the car door, that a bigger incident was avoided," the Indian High Commission in London said in the statement.
The statement was released after social media videos showed Doraiswami being accosted near the parking area of the gurudwara located on Albert Drive in Glasgow by pro-Khalistani elements, who blocked the Indian envoy from entering the gurudwara. In the video, some of the men are heard saying, “All Indian envoys must be subjected to this as India was targeting them".
Meanwhile, Police Scotland said it responded to a report of a disturbance in the Albert Drive area of Glasgow around 1:05 pm (local time) on Friday, adding that an inquiry is ongoing to establish the full circumstances around the incident.
In an email statement to ANI, Police Scotland spokesperson said, “We were called around 1.05 pm on Friday, 29 September, to a report of a disturbance that happened in the Albert Drive area of Glasgow."
The spokesperson added, "There were no reports of any injuries and enquiries are ongoing to establish the full circumstances."
Meanwhile, United Kingdom Minister of State for the Indo-Pacific Anne-Marie Trevelyan said that she was "concerned" to see that the Indian High Commissioner Vikram Doraiswami was stopped from meeting the Gurudwara Committee in Glasgow.
Taking to X, formerly known as Twitter, Anne-Marie Trevelyan stated, "Concerned to see that the Indian High Commissioner @VDoraiswami was stopped from meeting with the Gurudwara Committee at the Gurudwara in Glasgow. The safety and security of foreign diplomats is of utmost importance and our places of worship in the UK must be open to all." (ANI)