Sikh gang jailed over attack on retired Indian army general Kuldip Singh Brar

Retired officer was attacked in retaliation for his leadership of a military operation against the Golden Temple of Amritsar

Crime Correspondent

A retired Indian army general welcomed long prison sentences handed to four Sikh extremists on Tuesday who attacked him in central London in retaliation for his leadership of a military operation against the Golden Temple of Amritsar 29 years ago.

Lieutenant General Kuldip Singh Brar, 78, had his throat slashed by a group of four in a carefully planned attack during his annual visit to London last year. Two of the attackers were jailed for 14 years on Tuesday, while two others involved in the plot received sentences of 11 and 10 years.

Lt Gen Brar has lived under tight security in India, for the last 30 years but was unprotected while on holiday in Britain. The attack was not thought to be an indication of a rising threat from Sikh extremism and was directed at continuing resentment against Lt Gen Brar.

“They got what they deserved,” Lt Gen Brar told The Independent from his protected compound in Mumbai. “I’m sure the threat will increase with these sentences. The UK has demonstrated very clearly that it’s not prepared to tolerate terrorism on its soil.”

The retired officer said that extremist websites indicated that he had been the target of eight assassination attempts because of his leadership of the operation against militants holed up in the holiest Sikh shrine in 1984. The militants were seeking to separate from Indian rule and establish an independent state of Khalistan.

The military assault, which left at least 500 people dead, led to the revenge assassinations of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards, the head of the Indian army and anti-Sikh riots in that left thousands of people dead.

Commander Richard Walton, head of the Metropolitan Police counter terrorism command, said: “This was a pre-planned and organised attempt to assassinate General Brar for his military involvement in the siege of the Golden temple in India in 1984. It was ultimately unsuccessful and we are pleased that the sentencing reflects the seriousness of this attack.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
film
News
i100
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
News
Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
peopleHe has shaped British politics 'for good or ill'
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015