The Indian Government has lodged a strong protest with Canada over the presence of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at a Khalistan event in Toronto, where separatist elements were felicitated.
“We have taken up such issues in the past with the government of Canada, and in this particular instance, without getting into details, I can tell you the practice has not been discontinued,” said Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Gopal Baglay.
Two legislators, who had authored a motion in the Ontario assembly terming the 1984 anti-Sikh riots “Genocide”, were felicitated at the Khalistan event.
On April 30, Trudeau addressed a parade for ‘Khalsa Day’, which included floats glorifying Sikh militant leaders Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, Amreek Singh and former General Shahbeg Singh who were killed in the siege of the Golden Temple and Operation Bluestar in June 1984.
The procession, organised by the Ontario Sikhs and Gurdwara Council, also felicitated the legislator from Mr. Trudeau’s Liberal Party, Harinder Kaur Malhi who had moved a resolution on “genocide” against India for the anti-Sikh riots of November 1984, that was passed by the Ontario Assembly on April 6 this year.
India had raised a strong protest after the vote (34-5), calling it a “misguided motion based on a limited understanding of India, its constitution, society, ethos, rule of law and its judicial process,”, with the government expressing its unhappiness both with the High Commission in Delhi, and with the Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan when he met with Defence Minister Arun Jaitley in Delhi on April 18.