Gurpatwant Singh Pannun Family, Biography

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Religion: Sikhism
Education: Law
Hometown: New York

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun

Profession(s)Lawyer, Khalistani Terrorist
Notorious forBeing the founder of the militant organisation Sikhs for Justice (SFJ)
Physical Stats & More
Height (approx.)5' 7" (170 cm)
Eye ColourDark Brown
Hair ColourSalt and Pepper
Personal Life
BirthplaceKhankot Village, Amritsar, Punjab, India
SignatureSignature of Gurpatwant Singh Pannun
HometownNew York, USA
SchoolHe completed his schooling in Punjab.
College/UniversityPunjab University
Educational QualificationGraduation in Law
AddressHouse No. 350-05 AVE, 59th Floor Empire State Building, New York, USA
ParentsFather- Mohinder Singh Pannun (deceased; retired Punjab State Agricultural Marketing Board employee)
Mother- Amarjit Kaur (deceased)
SiblingsHe has two siblings. His brother's name is Mangwant Singh who migrated to the US along with Gurpatwant.
Other RelativesPaternal Cousin- Diljit Singh Pannun (deceased; High Commissioner to Ghana from 1992 to 1997, Ambassador to Madagascar from 2005 to 2007)
A photo of Diljit Singh Pannun

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun

Some Lesser Known Facts About Gurpatwant Singh Pannun

  • After completing his college studies, Pannun relocated to the United States of America, where he started his legal career as an attorney.
  • In October 2007, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun established the Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) in New York, USA, assuming the role of its legal advisor. The organization was established to advocate for justice regarding the Sikhs who lost their lives during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in India following the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. A logo of Sikh for Justice (SFJ)
  • Under the leadership of Pannun, SFJ filed a lawsuit against Kamal Nath, a leader of the Indian National Congress (INC), in a US local court in 2011, accusing him of being involved in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in India. However, the court dismissed the litigation, stating that the riots had no impact on the United States.
  • SFJ filed an amended class action complaint against Sonia Gandhi in September 2013, alleging her involvement in protecting individuals linked to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. The complaint was dismissed in June 2014 on the grounds of lacking subject matter jurisdiction and failure to state a valid claim.
  • SFJ submitted a petition in a US court in February 2014, accusing Manmohan Singh, the former Prime Minister of India, of playing a major role in financing the groups responsible for suppressing the Sikh community in India during his tenure as the country’s Finance Minister in the 1990s.
  • SFJ initiated a campaign in November 2015, urging for the release of Jagtar Singh Hawara, who was involved in the assassination of Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh.

    Pannun while giving a speech at a pro-Khalistan rally in the US

    Pannun while giving a speech at a pro-Khalistan rally in the US

  • In 2018, during an announcement in London, Pannun revealed that the SFJ had plans to coordinate Referendum 2020 with the objective of seeking Punjab’s separation from India. The SFJ intended to hold the referendum in Pakistan, Australia, Canada, the USA, and the UK. Additionally, Pannun mentioned the SFJ’s intention to establish a permanent office in Lahore with the intent to streamline the voter registration process and provide crucial information to the Sikh community. He also stated that the banners promoting the referendum near Nankana Sahib in Pakistan would prominently feature images of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

    A poster of Referendum 2020 announcing the initiation of the voter registration process

    A poster of Referendum 2020 announcing the initiation of the voter registration process

  • On 10 July 2019, the Indian government implemented a prohibition on SFJ. The government’s official notification read,

    The outfit was declared outlawed under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention Act), 1967. “[SFJ] is in close touch with the militant outfits and activists and is supporting a violent form of extremism and militancy in Punjab and elsewhere to carve out Khalistan out of the territory of India.”

  • In 2019, reports indicated that the Pakistani government collaborated with Pannun to organize workshops and seminars related to Khalistan for brainwashing the Sikh pilgrims from India who visited the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur in Pakistan.
  • He penned a letter to Xi Jinping, the Chinese President, in June 2020, expressing his support for the Chinese government and criticising the Indian government for the Galwan Valley clashes in Ladakh.

    The letter written by Gurpatwant Singh Pannun to Chinese President Xi Jinping

    The letter written by Gurpatwant Singh Pannun to Chinese President Xi Jinping

  • The Government of India designated him as a terrorist in July 2020 as per the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act of 1967.
  • In September 2020, 46 kanal of land owned by Gurpatwant in his native village in Khankot, Amritsar, was attached by the NIA.
  • SFJ, on the death anniversary of Indira Gandhi in October 2020, announced cash rewards and mobile phones to students in Punjab who voiced slogans against India and Indira Gandhi.
  • Pannun is regarded as the mastermind responsible for the farmers’ protests that escalated into violence in New Delhi in 2021. Subsequently, he offered a cash reward of USD 2.5 lacs to individuals who raised the Khalistani flag on the Red Fort in New Delhi during the 2022 Republic Day. In a video, Pannun talked about it and said,

    26 January is coming and on the Red Fort, there is an Indian tricolour. Remove the tricolour on 26th of January and replace it with the Khalistan flag. Sikhs for Justice will give 2.5 lakh US dollars to those who will remove the Indian tricolour.”

  • SFJ took credit for the RPG assault on Mohali’s Intelligence Headquarters of the Punjab Police in May 2022.
  • The Punjab Police obtained audio recordings of Pannun in July 2022 from two SFJ members, which unveiled the group’s endeavours to shelter those accountable for singer Sidhu Moose Wala’s demise. The audio recordings further revealed that SFJ had strategized assaults on the Ambala Cantonment Junction railway station and Ambala City railway station. The group also had intentions of creating disturbances during Independence Day celebrations in Delhi and Punjab.
  • In October 2022, the Government of India made a formal request to Interpol for issuing a Red Corner Notice (RCN) against Pannun. Interpol, however, declined the request, stating insufficient evidence as the reason.
  • In December 2022, the SFJ asserted its involvement in attacking a police station in Tarn Taran with a Russian-made RPG-28 through an audio recording. However, Pannun rebutted the allegations and maintained that the SFJ was engaged in a “peaceful” movement. Additionally, he extended financial aid to individuals apprehended by the police following the assault.
  • As part of the Har Ghar Tiranga Abhiyan, Congress leader Gursimram Singh Mand raised the Indian flag at Gurpatwant Singh Pannun’s residence in Chandigarh in August 2022.

    Members of the Indian National Congress (INC) holding the Indian flag outside Pannun's house in Chandigarh

    Members of the Indian National Congress (INC) holding the Indian flag outside Pannun’s house in Chandigarh

  • He issued a threat to Assam CM Sarma in April 2023, following the imprisonment of Amritpal Singh’s close aides. Additionally, he claimed responsibility for the assault on the Indian Army’s camp in Bhatinda, Punjab, resulting in the demise of four soldiers. The Punjab Police, however, dismissed the SFJ’s assertions of attacking the army base.
  • Gurpatwant Singh Pannun was reported missing for 48 hours on 20 June 2023. Several sources claimed that Pannun decided to go into hiding due to concerns about being targeted following the death of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a Khalistani separatist based in Canada. Pannun was reportedly very close to Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

    A photo of Gurpatwant Singh Pannun with Hardeep Singh Nijjar

    A photo of Gurpatwant Singh Pannun with Hardeep Singh Nijjar

  • In September 2023, the NIA confiscated his house in Sector – 15 in Chandigarh as well as his land in Khankot.
    Notice board erected by the NIA outside Pannun's house in Chandigarh

    Notice board erected by the NIA outside Pannun’s house in Chandigarh

    NIA and Punjab Police officials standing next to the notice erected at Pannun's land in Khankot

    NIA and Punjab Police officials standing next to the notice erected at Pannun’s land in Khankot

  • In September 2023, the Gujarat police registered an FIR against Pannun for issuing threats to disrupt the 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup. As per the FIR, many people across the country had received threats through a pre-recorded message. [1]India Today According to reports, Pannun, in the voice message, said,

    It will not be the start of the World Cup Cricket but this will be the beginning of the world terror cup. We are going to take revenge for Shaheed Nijar’s assassination.

    The Sikhs For Justice (SFJ) announced a reward of US $10,000 for a boy named Wen Johnson, who breached security and entered the pitch during the India vs Australia World Cup final at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on 19 November 2023. Johnson, a Palestine supporter, was later taken to the Chandkheda Police Station after his arrest. Some agencies later speculated that Johnson’s move might have been a plan by SFJ; however, during an interrogation, Johnson mentioned that he just wanted to hug Virat Kohli and express his support for Palestine. [2]News 18

    Wen Johnson after making his way into the field during the 2023 ICC Men's World Cup final

    Wen Johnson after making his way into the field during the 2023 ICC Men’s World Cup final

  • In 2023, the United States Department of Justice indicted Nikhil Gupta, an Indian citizen, for planning Gurpatwant Singh’s assassination in association with an Indian agent referred to as CC-1 in New York.
  • According to the document, Nikhil Gupta, who had been involved in international narcotics, trafficking, and weapons, was hired by CC-1 to arrange the murder in exchange for help in dismissing a criminal case in India.
  • Nikhil Gupta was arrested by Czech authorities under the US-Czech extradition agreement on 30 June 2023. The document revealed that Nikhil once told a ‘hitman,’ who later turned out to be an undercover US law enforcement officer, that Hardeep Singh Nijjar was also a target. [3]The Guardian
  • In April 2024, the US media reported that the man referred to as CC-1 was a RAW agent named Vikram Yadav who was involved in the plot to kill Pannun. The report claimed that it was Vikram Yadav who forwarded details about Pannun, including his New York address, hired a hit team, and plotted an attack on Pannun on American soil. [4]The Washington Post