Arson Attempt on Indian Consulate in San Francisco

Date:

Washington, DC – On July 2nd at 1:35 AM, a brazen act of arson took place at the front entrance of the SFO Consulate. Two individuals dressed in full black, seemingly wearing PPE kits, approached the consulate carrying highly inflammable fuel in Jerry cans. In less than two minutes, they sprayed the fuel, painted graffiti, and set the consulate ablaze. The incident was captured on the mobile phone of a third individual associated with the proclaimed Khalistani terrorist group. This report outlines the details of the attack, the response from authorities, and the subsequent diplomatic actions taken by the Indian Embassy.

Attack Details: At 1:35 AM, two unidentified individuals approached the SFO Consulate in black attire resembling PPE kits. They carried jerry cans filled with highly flammable fuel and swiftly sprayed it at the front entrance. Following the act, they painted graffiti on the consulate’s walls before igniting the fuel, causing a significant fire outbreak. The entire incident lasted less than two minutes and was recorded by a member of a Khalistani terrorist group.

Upon the activation of the alarm system, local firefighters were promptly dispatched to the scene. Their swift action resulted in the fire being brought under control within ten minutes, minimizing the damage caused by the arson attack. However, the gravity of the incident raises concerns regarding the security of Indian diplomatic premises within the United States.

In an attempt to gain attention, the Khalistani supporters uploaded the video of the attack on Twitter. Failing to generate traction, they reached out to a local TV station, Diya TV, to publicize their act of terrorism. Prompt media coverage of such incidents is crucial to raise awareness and gather support for appropriate actions against such criminal activities.

Diplomatic Actions: Upon learning of the attack, the Indian Embassy immediately contacted the highest levels of the U.S. government. Assurances were given that investigations are underway and that appropriate actions will be taken at the federal, state, and city levels. Subsequent meetings between embassy officials and senior U.S. government officials stressed the need to enhance security measures for all five Indian consulates, the Permanent Mission in New York, and the Embassy in Washington, D.C. Additionally, the Indian side requested increased security for its diplomats and officials working in the United States.

State Department Response: In response to the incident, State Department Spokesperson, Miller, issued a statement on Twitter. The State Department expressed its concern over the attack and reaffirmed its commitment to ensuring the safety and security of diplomatic missions within the country. The Tweet said, “The U.S. strongly condemns the reported vandalism and attempted arson against the Indian Consulate in San Francisco on Saturday. Vandalism or violence against diplomatic facilities or foreign diplomats in the U.S. is a criminal offense.”

The arson attack on the SFO Consulate has raised serious concerns about the security of Indian diplomatic premises in the United States. The swift response from local firefighters and the immediate engagement of the Indian Embassy with U.S. government officials is commendable. However, this incident necessitates urgent action to bolster security measures at all Indian consulates, the Permanent Mission in New York, and the Embassy in Washington, D.C. It is imperative that the safety of Indian diplomats and officials working in the United States is ensured to prevent any further acts of violence or terrorism on diplomatic grounds.

Rohit Sharma
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Rohit Sharma is a Senior Journalist who has lived in Washington DC since 2007. He currently is a contributor to Dainik Bhaskar, the world's third largest newspaper by readership. His opinion pieces feature on News 9 and The Quint. He has been invited as guest on the BBC, NDTV, India Today, AajTak, Times Now, Republic, Zee news and others. His work has featured in six Indian Languages.

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