India Canada Row:India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Friday said Canada’s allegations regarding the death of a Khalistani separatist were discussed during his meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken a day earlier. He said that after the meeting both the delegations shared better information. Jaishankar was asked at think-tank Hudson Institute whether the issue of Canadian allegations had come up during his meeting with Blinken at the Foggy Bottom headquarters of the State Department. In response he said, yes, I did that.
India’s concerns explained to America
Jaishankar said that the American side shared its assessment of the entire situation and he explained to the Americans the gist of India’s concerns. He said, I think hopefully we will both come away with better information. Tension between India and Canada had increased after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s allegations regarding the possible involvement of Indian agents in the killing of Khalistani separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18 in British Columbia. India had declared Nijjar a terrorist in 2020.
First privately then publicly Trudeau accused India
India rejected the allegations as absurd and motivated and expelled a senior Canadian diplomat in retaliation for the expulsion of an Indian official in Ottawa over the matter. Jaishankar said that the Canadian Prime Minister had made some allegations first privately and then publicly. Jaishankar said, our response to him privately and publicly was that his allegation was not in accordance with our policy. If he, his government has some relevant specifics, we will look into it.
Canadian land is being used against India
Jaishankar said that for India, Canada has become a country where organized crime from India has got mixed with people smuggling, got mixed with separatism and violence. He acknowledged that before the Canadian Prime Minister’s comments, there had been a lot of (discussion) between India and Canada on this issue. The minister alleged that the security situation in Canada is not good. He said that Indian diplomats have been given open threats and they do not feel safe.
Jaishankar said, I don’t think most Americans, maybe Canadians, look much different. For us, it has certainly been a country where there is a mix of organized crime, people smuggling as well as violence, terrorism from India. He said, due to this, visa operations in Canada were also forced to be temporarily suspended. So, as I said, you know, often countries look very different, depending on how you look at them, but there is a problem with Canada.