Shillong, September 19: In a reciprocal move, India expelled a high-ranking Canadian diplomat, mirroring Canada’s expulsion of an Indian counterpart.
As per India Today, this development unfolded shortly after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau publicly asserted a potential connection between the Indian government and the assassination of Khalistani extremist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) summoned the Canadian High Commissioner on the same day, conveying India’s decision to expel the Canadian diplomat stationed in India. The departing senior diplomat is required to vacate India within the next five days.
In a significant development, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed the Canadian Parliament, revealing that Canadian security agencies were actively investigating a potential link between the Indian government and the earlier assassination of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar. Trudeau explicitly stated, “Canadian security agencies have been diligently pursuing credible allegations of a potential link between agents of the Government of India and the killing of a Canadian citizen, Hardeep Singh Nijjar.” He also disclosed raising this matter during discussions with Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G20 Summit.
In response to Trudeau’s allegations, Canada expelled a top-ranking Indian diplomat, specifically the head of Indian intelligence in Canada, as announced by Canadian Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly.
India vehemently rejected Canada’s accusations, characterizing them as “absurd and motivated.” The central government emphasized its unwavering commitment to the rule of law, firmly denying any involvement in acts of violence in Canada. The MEA issued a statement stating, “We have observed and reject the Canadian Prime Minister’s statement in their Parliament, as well as the statement by their Foreign Minister. Allegations of the Government of India’s involvement in any act of violence in Canada are unfounded and driven by ulterior motives.”
Shortly after India’s unequivocal rejection of the allegations, the central government expelled a senior Canadian diplomat. The Minister of External Affairs summoned the High Commissioner of Canada to India, notifying them of the decision to expel the diplomat stationed in India. The MEA cited concerns about Canadian diplomats interfering in India’s internal affairs and engaging in activities detrimental to India’s interests, labeling them as “anti-India activities.”
In response to the escalating tensions between India and Canada, the United States expressed deep concern about the allegations made by Trudeau. The White House National Security Council spokesperson, Adrienne Watson, issued a statement emphasizing the necessity for Canada’s investigation to proceed and for the individuals responsible to be held accountable. The U.S. pledged to maintain regular contact with its Canadian counterparts to monitor the situation closely.