Thursday, December 3, 2020

How the UAE Helped India when Khalistani Terrorists, with ISI Support, carried Out a Hijacking before Operation Bluestar

//On August 24, 1984, a Chandigarh-Srinagar IAC A 300 flight was hijacked by six Khalistani militants and taken to Lahore. From there, it was flown to Karachi and finally to Dubai. This was the second hijacking incident in 1984, following the one in July 5, 1984, also by Sikh militants. The magnitude of this incident could be gauged by the fact that this and other similar incidents had led to a crescendo of serious security breaches culminating in the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on 31 October 1984.

This incident was perhaps the first to provide solid proof of Pakistan’s active complicity in encouraging separatist Sikh militancy in Punjab. At Lahore, a Pakistani intelligence official handed over a German-made pistol to Kamaljit Singh Sandhu, leader of the hijackers. Till then, they possessed no arms. Our intelligence agencies worked silently and obtained proof by liaising with the BND, their counterpart in West Germany, to prove that this was part of the 75 pistols sent by their country to Pakistan. The most difficult part was getting the custody of the six Khalistani hijackers. Pakistan’s leadership felt that it would be difficult for India to get their custody from Dubai, where, they felt, they had better clout than India. But they had underestimated the personal contacts and quiet diplomacy of the late Romesh Bhandari, then the secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs Ministry (MEA). Bhandari, who had befriended most of the heads of the oil producing states, in a dramatic breakthrough obtained extradition of these hijackers although there was no extradition treaty between the countries. They were all flown in to India on September 3, 1984 and later sentenced to life imprisonment.//

-Vappala Balachandran on The Wire (

And here's an excerpt from an India Today report ( dating to 1984, referring to how the UAE authorities managed the situation when the plane landed in Dubai-

//Unlike the reception at Lahore and Karachi, the UAE Government extended all possible help to the Indian government even allowing another Indian Airlines aircraft that had been following IC 421 from Karachi to land and park where they could observe the scene and also monitor the conversation between the cockpit and the control tower. Says Indian Ambassador to the UAE, Ishrat Aziz: "We received the fullest cooperation from the UAE Government and were kept fully in the picture right through." Much of the eventual credit will go to UAE Defence Minister, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who flew back to Dubai from Europe in his private aircraft to personally handle the situation, something he did with enviable aplomb and tact.//

The terrorists were convicted on extradition to India -



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