On Saturday, during a meeting of the Standing Committee on Health in light of the second wave of Coronavirus pandemic in Canada, Conservative Party MP Michelle Rempel Garner quizzed the Minister of Public Services and Procurement Anita Anand about the state of the vaccination programme in the country.
“Has the Minister or the Prime Minister (Justin Trudeau) phoned PM Modi to get vaccines from India?” the Conservative MP put forth a direct question. While trying to evade it, MP Anita Anand replied, “I am in regular communication with organisations and countries around the world to secure doses of additional vaccines.”
MP Garner further prodded, “Have you phoned Prime Minister Modi?” MP Anand replied, “I personally have not phoned PM Modi and I cannot speak for anyone else in the government.”MP Garner inquired, “Does the Minister know if the Prime Minister (Justin Trudeau) has reached out to the Indian government?” MP Anita Anand replied, “I do not know. Thank you.”
It is notable here that India, as the largest vaccine producer in the world, has been sending consignments of millions of doses of coronavirus vaccines to friendly nations. Several nations worldwide have also shown interest to commercially procure the cheap and easy to store vaccines produced by Indian companies.
Justin Trudeau and his support for the anti-farm law protests
The Trudeau government in Canada is known for pandering to Khalistani elements to keep its vote bank of pro-Khalistani Sikh Canadians happy. Time and again, Trudeau himself has extended support to causes that are espoused by the Khalistani elements, the latest being the protests by certain farmer leaders of Punjab.
In a statement, Trudeau had 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.”
Canada updates 2018 report on terror to remove reference of Khalistanis
In April 2019, the Canadian government modified the 2018 Public Report on the Terrorist Threat to Canada and removed the mention of Sikh extremism from the report. Giving in to the pressure from the Sikh community in Canada, the Canadian government removed the reference to the Sikh religion and changed it to “extremists who support violent means to establish an independent state within India”. The report which was earlier released in December last year had mentioned the Sikh extremism as a threat to Canada.
In the 2018 report, the terminology Sikh (Khalistani) terrorism was used for the first time and it was referred to as a “concern”. The had listed two terrorist organisations in the 2018 report namely, Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) and International Sikh Youth Federation (ISYF).
Canadian MP Jagmeet Singh, Rihanna’s tweet and dessert for Playboy model and porn star
The Liberal Party’s support for the Khalistan movement has intensified ever since the rise of Canadian MP Khalistan supporter Jagmeet Singh to national politics. Singh, who formed his own New Democratic Party, posed a threat to Justin Trudeau’s Sikh vote bank.
Jagmeet Singh has been under the radar of Indian Intelligence agencies for not only sheltering pro-Khalistani sympathisers in Canada but also for leading an anti-Indian movement more vociferously in the Americas, especially after the abrogation of Article 370. According to a dossier prepared by the Indian intelligence officials in October 2019, Jagmeet Singh, the Leader of Canada’s second-largest party, remains a ”pro-Khalistani and a pro-Pakistani” ringleader in the country despite his deep Punjabi roots.
It is being suspected that Canadian top politician Jagmeet Singh, who is notoriously known for supporting Khalistan separatism, could be behind Rihanna’s anti-Indian propaganda. Hours after Rihanna posted a tweet intervening in India’s affairs, controversial Canadian lawmaker Jagmeet Singh took to Twitter to hail Rihanna for consistently ‘uplifting and empowering the voices of the oppressed.’
In an interview just before Canadian elections in 2019, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh had boasted about how Rihanna had followed him on Instagram. Speaking on the same, the controversial lawmaker had claimed that he had received a text from the pop-singer on Instagram too. Social media users are now pointing out that Jagmeet Singh may have used his political clout to convince Rihanna to put a tweet in support of the alleged ‘farmer’ protests, which have been hijacked by the pro-Khalistan elements. He has also offered to pay for the desserts of Amanda Cerny and Mia Khalifa for their support to anti-farm law protests.
Justin Trudeau, Khalistan and the endangering the lives of Canadian citizens
The decision of the Justin Trudeau-led-Liberal Party government in Canada, to not approach the Indian government for procuring vaccines, is concerning. This is despite the fact that the country has witnessed 8.04 Coronavirus cases and 20,767 fatalities (as of February 8, 2020).
Although Sikhs constitute about 1% population in Canada, they wield political influence in several key constituencies. With the growing support for the Khalistan movement in the country, Justin Trudeau and his party have often encouraged the radical Sikh extremists vowing to secede Punjab from the Indian territory. His party had been harbouring prominent Khalistan supporters, including the former Minister of Innovation, Science, and Industry Navdeep Bhains.
Despite India being the largest vaccine producer currently producing the cheapest and most easy-to-store vaccines for a large number of population, the reluctance of Justin Trudeau to not approach the Indian government speaks a lot about the priorities of the Canadian government. While Trudeau emerges as the poster boy for the Canadian Khalistanis, the lives of common Canadians remain threatened especially in the second wave of the pandemic in the country.