Nikhil Gupta is an Indian citizen who is known for being charged by the US Justice Department on 30 June 2023 for being involved in the assassination of a US citizen of Indian origin, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, who is a Sikh separatist leader in New York.
Nikhil Gupta was born in 1971 (age 52 years; as of 2023) in India.
Parents & Siblings
There is not much information about his parents and siblings.
Nikhil follows Hinduism.
Planning of assassination
According to the press release by the US Department, Nikhil was involved in international narcotics and weapons trafficking. Nikhil was recruited by his associate in May 2023 to “orchestrate the assassination.” Nikhil reached out to someone he thought was a criminal partner to get help in hiring a hitman in New York but the person and the supposed hitman worked with the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration). In June, Nikhil got details about the target and shared them with the supposed hitman. The press release also mentioned that Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada was a target and there were many other targets. On 30 June 2023, when Nikhil went from India to the Czech Republic, he was arrested by the Czech authorities following the extradition agreement between the United States and the Czech Republic. Another person from India who was involved in the assassination of an attorney and political activist, a US citizen of Indian origin, Gurpatwant Singh Pannun residing in New York City was working with Nikhil in India and others in different countries.
The aftermath of the case
As of 2023, Nikhil is in a prison in Prague, waiting to be sent to the United States. A petition, filed by a family member known as Mr. X, requested the top court to instruct India to get involved. The petition argued that Gupta’s detention is “illegal” and expressed concerns about his safety as a “law-abiding citizen.” In the petition, he mentioned that he was a Hindu and vegetarian, but was made to consume beef and pork against his will while he was held in Czech custody, going against his religious principles. He also argued that he was not allowed to speak with his family in India, denied consular access, and was not allowed to seek legal representation. The court recognized that it was a highly sensitive issue for the Ministry of External Affairs. Justice Sanjiv Khanna initially advised the petitioner to address the matter in the foreign court, emphasizing that the Supreme Court of India have no authority over arrests in another country.