Justin Trudeau says “credible allegations” hyperlink India to the killing of a Sikh chief in Canada

The Canadian Prime Minister mentioned there are “credible allegations” that the Indian authorities was concerned within the killing of a outstanding Sikh chief in British Columbia, citing intelligence from nationwide safety companies.

Justin Trudeau instructed MPs on Monday that Canadian authorities are investigating whether or not New Delhi “brokers” had been behind the June killing of Hardeep Singh Nigar, who was shot to dying in Surrey, a Vancouver suburb with a big Sikh group.

“Canadian safety providers are actively pursuing credible allegations of a attainable hyperlink between Indian authorities brokers and the killing of a Canadian citizen,” Trudeau mentioned. He added: “Any international authorities involvement within the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil is an unacceptable violation of our sovereignty.”

Canada expelled a senior Indian diplomat from Canada on Monday, Indian Overseas Minister Melanie Jolie mentioned. “We are going to shield Canadians always,” Jolie instructed reporters. “We count on India’s full cooperation to unravel this matter.”

Trudeau instructed Parliament that he raised the allegations with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi throughout a gathering in New Delhi final week through the G20 summit.

The Indian authorities on Tuesday rejected Trudeau’s assertion within the Canadian Parliament, in addition to Jolie’s statements, calling them “ridiculous and motivated.”

“The Canadian Prime Minister made comparable allegations in opposition to our Prime Minister, which had been fully rejected,” the Indian Ministry of Exterior Affairs mentioned in an announcement. “We’re a democracy with a powerful dedication to the rule of legislation.”

Mourners carry the coffin of Sikh chief Hardeep Singh Nigar throughout a funeral procession in Surrey, Canada, in June. © Darryl Dyke/The Canadian Press/AFP

Relations between India and Canada have been tense for a very long time. New Delhi accused Ottawa in 2020 of interfering after Trudeau spoke out in favor of protesting farmers who pressured Modi to desert a deliberate sweeping overhaul of the farm legislation. The 2 nations halted talks on a deliberate free commerce settlement final week.

Canada is dwelling to roughly 800,000 Sikhs, a lot of whom dwell in Surrey and Brampton, a suburb of Toronto. Some Sikh Canadians help the Khalistan independence motion, which seeks to create a sovereign state within the northern Indian state of Punjab.

The Indian authorities condemns the motion and has lengthy accused Canada of harboring Sikh separatists, whom it described on Tuesday as “Khalistani terrorists and extremists” who “proceed to threaten India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

“The truth that Canadian political figures have publicly expressed sympathy for such components stays deeply regarding,” New Delhi mentioned.

The Indian authorities had accused Nigar, a Sikh nationalist, of terrorism and supplied rewards for his arrest. In 2016, Najjar wrote a letter to Trudeau during which he known as New Delhi’s allegations baseless and mentioned his activism was “peaceable, democratic and guarded below the Canadian Constitution of Rights and Freedoms.”

The World Sikh Group of Canada known as Nigar’s killing on the grounds of the gurdwara — a Sikh home of worship, the place he was president — an “assassination” and urged Ottawa to analyze India’s position. British Columbia police mentioned final month they’d recognized three suspects, however didn’t establish them. No arrests have been made.

Jagmeet Singh, the Sikh chief of the New Democratic Celebration of Canada, mentioned on X, beforehand on Twitter, that he would go away “no stone unturned within the pursuit of justice, together with holding Narendra Modi accountable.”

Professional-Khalistan protests in Canada and elsewhere this yr have angered Modi’s Hindu nationalist authorities, with supporters of the motion attacking New Delhi’s diplomatic missions in San Francisco and London.

In July, India summoned Canada’s Excessive Commissioner in New Delhi after protesters held a “Khalistan Freedom March” in Toronto and accused Indian diplomats of involvement in Najjar’s dying.