In her role as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on British Sikhs, Preet has written to the Prime Minister with the support of over 70 MPs raising serious concerns of British citizen, Jagtar Singh Johal’s testimony of torture. Mr Johal was seized by Indian security forces on 4 November 2017 whilst in India to get married. Seven months later, he remains in detention and has still not been provided with an independent medical examination despite repeated requests by his lawyers. In December, human rights organisation Redress filed an urgent appeal to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture on Mr Johal’s case. As a result, on 29 January this year, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture; the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, and the Vice-Chair of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention wrote to the Government of India concerning the case. Unfortunately, the Government of India has failed to respond.
Mr Johal alleges he has been subjected to torture at the hands of the Indian security forces. In a recent handwritten account detailing his treatment that has just become available, Mr Johal alleges “The torture took place intermittently, numerous times each day. Electric shocks were administered by placing the crocodile clips on my ear lobes, nipples and private parts. Multiple shocks were given each day” and that “Threats of taking me to a remote location where I would be shot dead were also given. At one point, petrol was brought into the room and I was threatened with being burnt”.
Preet has been working closely with Mr Johal’s local MP, Martin Docherty-Hughes, on this issue, and she has been in communication with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office since Mr Johal was first arrested. Preet has also written to the Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh, but to no avail.
In light of these shocking new allegations, Preet has called on the Prime Minister to use all the diplomatic means at your disposal to ensure that the Government of India abides by the rule of law and ensures that Mr Johal is not subjected to torture. She has also asked the Prime Minister to call on the Government of India to respond to the joint appeal by the three UN special rapporteurs.