New Delhi: India on Thursday said that Canada provides a “safe haven to terrorists, extremists” and those involved in organised crime.
MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, “If you’re talking about reputational issues and reputational damage, if there’s any country that needs to look at this, I think it is Canada and its growing reputation as a place, as a safe haven for terrorists, for extremists, and for organized crime. And I think that’s a country that needs to worry about its international reputation.”
Earlier, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau informed the House of Commons that his government had “credible allegations” linking Indian government agents to the assassination of Sikh leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar on Canadian soil in June.
In response to Trudeau’s accusations, both India and Canada have expelled a senior diplomat from each other’s countries. India denied the allegations, labeling them as “absurd” and “motivated.”
Nijjar, aged 45, was the leader of the banned Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF). He was assassinated outside a gurdwara in Surrey, British Columbia, on June 18. Nijjar had Rs10 lakh cash reward on his head.
Recent developments have led to India issuing a travel advisory for its citizens in Canada, following Canada’s own advisory update for India. India’s advisory raised concerns about the increasing anti-India activities and “politically condoned hate crimes” in Canada, urging Indian nationals in Canada and those planning to travel there to exercise caution.
The Canadian government, however, rejected India’s travel advisory, asserting that Canada is one of the safest countries in the world.
In the midst of this diplomatic standoff, the Punjab Police has initiated a statewide crackdown on associates of gangster Goldy Brar, who is accused of the murder of singer Sidhu Moosewala.