The Canadian High Commissioner has been summoned by the Ministry of External Affairs today. He was informed that the remarks by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau regarding the farmers’ protest and also the comments of some of the cabinet ministers was unacceptable interference in India’s internal matter.
Canadian High Commissioner summoned to Ministry of External Affairs today & informed that comments by Canadian Prime Minister, some Cabinet Ministers and Members of Parliament on issues relating to Indian farmers constitute, unacceptable interference in our internal affairs: MEA pic.twitter.com/twa2NjB8Mu— ANI (@ANI) December 4, 2020
Releasing a press statement, the MEA said that such actions, if continued, would have a damaging impact on ties between India and Canada. It further said that such comments have increased extremist gatherings in front of India’s High Commissions and Consulates. India said that it expects full security to its diplomats and also expects that Canada will refrain from ‘pronouncements that legitimise extremist activism’.
On the 1st of December, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his ministers had expressed concerns over ongoing farmers’ protests in India. During the virtual Gurpurab 2020 celebration, PM Trudeau, at the beginning of his address, talked about the protests in India. Ministers from the Sikh community, including Navdeep S Bains, Harjit Sajjan, and Bardish Chagger, joined him in the conversation.
While talking about the protests, Trudeau said, “I would be remiss if I didn’t start also by recognizing the news coming out of India about the protests by farmers. The situation is concerning. And we all are very worried about family and friends; I know that’s a reality for many of you. Let me remind you. Canada will always be ready to defend the right to peaceful protest. We believe in the importance of dialogue and that’s why we reached out to multiple means directly to Indian authorities to highlight our concerns.”
Not just Justin Trudeau, there were several other ministers too who had indulged in blatantly interfering in India’s internal affairs by commenting on the farmers protest.
After these comments, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava had called the remarks ill-informed, saying, “We’ve seen some ill-informed comments by Canadian leaders relating to farmers in India. These are unwarranted especially when pertaining to internal affairs of a democratic country.”
Khalistanis hijack farmer protests
It is important to note that the farmer protests in India have been hijacked, to a large extent by Khalistani elements. OpIndia had reported that the Khalistan organisation SFJ, funded by Pakistan, had earlier declared a grant of $1 million for farmers in Punjab and Haryana in lieu of their support for Khalistan. On 23rd September, it was reported that the SFJ had attempted to capitalise on the ongoing protests by farmers and had declared that it would distribute $1 million among farmers who had defaulted on agricultural loans.
“From October 1 to October 8, any farmer — irrespective of his faith — can register 25 votes for the Khalistan Referendum 2020 and get a grant of Rs 5,000 as assistance to repay their agricultural loans,” SJF said. The security agencies have since received inputs on the latest offer by SFJ.
Further, in September itself, the banned pro-Khalistani group Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) had announced a door-to-door campaign for registration of voters supporting its separatist agenda called ‘Referendum 2020’.
The terrorist group had earlier tried to lure farmers of Punjab by offering Rs 3,500 to each farmer as grant ahead of Referendum 2020. The group had announced that it would be providing money on a monthly basis to farmers who could not pay their loans. The MHA had ordered the properties of SFJ leaders to be attached earlier this month on the recommendation of the National Investigating Agency (NIA).
The Ministry of Home Affairs had declared the SFJ an unlawful association under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. Its leaders including, Pannun, Najjar were also declared as terrorists under the Act.
During the ongoing protests, a few Khalistani terror sympathisers disguised as farmers were caught gloating over the assassination of the former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, who also threatened PM Modi with a similar fate if their demands went unfulfilled.
In one of the videos from the protests, one of the demonstrators can be seen threatening PM Modi with dire consequences if the solution is not reached in the upcoming meeting between the farmers and the Centre over the agriculture bills.
Further, the protests, apparently carried out by the farmers, were taken control by the Khalistani supporters, who raised pro-Khalistani slogans hailing the face of Khalistani movement – Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.