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India rejects Canada's allegations after expulsion of top Indian diplomat

MEA's statement comes after Canada expelled an Indian diplomat on Monday as it investigates credible allegations that India's government may have had links to the assassination in Canada

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for his daily press conference on COVID-19, in front of his residence at Rideau Cottage in Ottawa. Photo: PTI

Trudeau said in Parliament that Canadian intelligence agencies have been looking into the allegations after Nijjar, a strong supporter of an independent Sikh homeland known as Khalistan, was gunned down on June 18 outside a Sikh cultural center in Su

BS Web Team New Delhi

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The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Tuesday issued a statement rejecting the claims made by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and foreign minister in their Parliament.

MEA's statement comes after Canada expelled an Indian diplomat on Monday as it investigates allegations that India's government may have had links to the assassination Sikh activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada.
 

Trudeau said in Parliament that Canadian intelligence agencies have been looking into the allegations after Nijjar, a strong supporter of an independent Sikh homeland known as Khalistan, was gunned down on June 18 outside a Sikh cultural center in Surrey, British Columbia.

MEA, in its statement, said, "We have seen and reject the statement of the Canadian prime minister". It further said that any allegations of the involvement of the government of India in any act of violence in Canada were absurd and motivated.

The ministry also stated that similar allegations were made to Prime Minister Narendra Modi when the Canadian prime minister was in India during the G20 Summit and were completely rejected.

In a strongly-worded statement, the ministry also added, "Such unsubstantiated allegations seek to shift the focus from Khalistani terrorists and extremists, who have been provided shelter in Canada and continue to threaten India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The inaction of the Canadian government on this matter has been a long-standing and continuing concern."  

It further said that Canadian political figures openly expressing sympathy for such elements remains a matter of deep concern and the space given in Canada to a range of illegal activities including murders, human trafficking, and organised crime is not new.

Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said the head of Indian intelligence in Canada has been expelled as a consequence."If proven true this would be a great violation of our sovereignty and of the most basic rule of how countries deal with each other," Joly said. "As a consequence, we have expelled a top Indian diplomat."

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First Published: Sep 19 2023 | 8:34 AM IST

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