Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau urges India to look closely and take the murder of a Sikh leader, Nijjar, seriously after New Delhi rejected all the accusations of its involvement in the June 18 killing. Muslim and Sikh leaders demanded the Canadian government take action to prevent potential threats to their communities. The Ottawa government announced an investigation to find the possible involvement of Indian authorities in the murder of the Sikh leader in Canada’s westernmost province in June. Mukhbir Singh, a member of the World Sikh Organization of Canada board, said the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar has shocked many Canadians.
Mukhbir Singh expressed his remarks in a joint news conference in Ottawa with the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) advocacy group and said killing Nijjar was not surprising to the Sikh community but also the Canadian people. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told the parliament they were investigating any possible links to India behind the Murder of Nijjar, who was killed outside a Sikh temple in British Columbia. New Delhi rejected all the allegations and declared them as absurd. India has also accused Canada of giving refuge to Sikh terrorists and extremists.
India Declared Nijjar “A Terrorist”
According to media reports, New Delhi declared Nijjar “a terrorist” who was involved in movements for a separate Sikh state in India. But Mukhtar Singh said India has been targeting Sikhs in Canada for a long time with accusations of espionage. He added they were aware of some more potential threats to Canadian Sikhs, and they have changed their lifestyle for better safety, but he did not disclose more details. Head of NCCM, Stephen Brown, also added his remarks alongside Mukhtar and said the killing of Nijjar was an attack on Canadian sovereignty.
Stephen added they were all together in that matter, as when a Canadian citizen with the right to speak freely on human rights was attacked, all were under a potential threat. Canada has not directly accused India of having links with the murder of Nijjar, and it has to show some evidence to prove its claims. On Tuesday, the Ottowa Prime Minister said the investigation findings would be shared publically and said the authorities worked for months to analyze the matter. He also advised New Delhi to take the issue seriously. Justin Trudeau expressed they did not want to raise the tensions between the countries and were trying to make things clear according to facts.
Canada Investigating The Matter In Coordination Of US
Senior Canadian government sources claimed on Tuesday that Ottawa had worked in coordination with the United States. Both countries’ intelligence have worked closely on the matter that India was involved in killing Nijjar in June this year. Trudeau said their agencies were working to find the facts that if New Delhi was involved in the shooting of Nijjar. Canada expelled New Delhi’s top intelligence official. India refused all Trudeau’s accusations and expelled a Canadian diplomat on Monday, saying as tit for tat.
The severe concerns between India and Canada are not new but have been going on for a long time as New Delhi is angry with the movement of a separate state active in Canada by Sikhs. The current situation results from a decades-long campaign by Indian Sikhs to have an independent state inside Punjab as the name of Khalistan. This movement stretches back to 1947, the creation of two sovereign states, Pakistan and India. The supporters of this motive have been with it for a long time, but it touched its peak in the 1980s.
Khalistan Movement Not Getting Slow
The movement for Khalistan caught fire after the Indian forces attacked the Golden Palace, a prominent and holy site for the Sikh community, and then the assassination of the Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by two of her Sikh guards. This series of misfortunes between the Indian federal government and Sikhs laid the foundation for Sikh-led bombings inside the country and then what Sikh leaders call the continuous persecution of their people inside and outside of India. For quite some time, New Delhi has been blaming the Ottowa for having a relaxed approach to Sikh activists in Canada, which is the most prominent residence for Sikhs after India.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently talked to Justin Trudeau on the occasion of the G20 Summit conducted in New Delhi. A statement was released in which Canadian Sikh protestors were accused of promoting violence against the Indian community in Canada and Indian diplomats and damaging diplomatic properties. PM Trudeau said he had shared the information on the connections of Indian agencies in the killing of Nijjar with PM Modi. He urged New Delhi for greater cooperation to get to the depth of the matter, and he said the killing of any Canadian citizen on its territory was unacceptable and violated their sovereignty. Nijjar was a famous and one of the most followed Sikh leaders, and his murder triggered anger among Sikhs inside and outside of India, especially in Canada.