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Canada essentially wants everyone to believe India killed Nijjar based on nothing more than ‘trust me bro’: Here is what the FT report indicates

Like most of the other Western publications, the Financial Times has shifted the burden of proving India’s involvement in the killing of Nijjar from Ontario to New Delhi, blaming India for being responsible for not comprehensively denying the allegations and Trudeau’s failure to furnish evidence that buttress his claims.

On Tuesday, 3 October, India directed Canada to withdraw dozens of ambassadors from the country, escalating a crisis sparked by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s remarks that New Delhi may have been involved in the murder of a Canadian Sikh who was a wanted terrorist in India. 

According to the Financial Times reports, Ottawa has been advised by New Delhi that it must repatriate approximately 40 diplomats by October 10. India also is planning to strip diplomatic immunity for diplomats who continue to stay after that date. Canada has 62 diplomats in India and India had said the total should be reduced by 41, the report said.

After Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently claimed that the Indian government was behind the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar, the diplomatic relationship between New Delhi and Ottawa reached a low point. Nijjar, a terrorist in India, was shot down outside a Gurdwara parking lot in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, on 18 June this year. 

During a discussion in the Canadian Parliament, Trudeau said that Canada’s national security officials had cause to think that “agents of the Indian government” killed Nijjar, who was also the president of Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara. However, India has categorically denied the charges, calling them “absurd” and “motivated.”

Meanwhile, the report by Financial Times indicated that India though rejected the claims, didn’t completely deny its involvement in the case. “India did not admit involvement in the murder but did not deny the claim, according to people familiar with the meetings. The Indian government said it had rejected the allegations,” the report quoted.

It said that Trudeau’s assertion in the Parliament came after weeks of secret diplomacy with India failed to win India’s cooperation in the police investigation into Nijjar’s murder. “The murder was also the focus of Trudeau’s meeting with India’s prime minister Narendra Modi at the G20 when the Indian side flatly refused a request for cooperation. In earlier meetings, India had even urged Canada to halt the inquiry,” it said.

Like most of the other Western publications, the Financial Times has shifted the burden of proving India’s involvement in the killing of Nijjar from Ontario to New Delhi, blaming India for being responsible for not denying the allegations convincingly enough for the West’s liking and Trudeau’s failure to furnish evidence that buttress his claims. It, nevertheless, reflects the innate racism of the West toward the Oriental world, especially toward India, as it continues to be governed by one of the most powerful governments that the country has seen in over three decades, catapulting it towards the milestone of becoming the third largest economy while being among the fastest growing nation in the present.

Notably, last week, India’s EAM S Jaishankar said that the said incident was not consistent with India’s policy. The EAM had accused Canada of extending support to the Sikh separatists and targeting India over the case.

Addressing a press conference in Washington DC, Jaishankar said freedom of expression should not extend to incitement of violence. He was hinting at the Khalistani terror activities that have often targeted Indian embassies in Canada.

“I flagged here (in the US), and I flagged this to the Canadians as well. We are a democracy. We don’t need to learn from other people what freedom of speech is about, but we can tell people this, we don’t think freedom of speech extends to incitement to violence. That to us, is the misuse of freedom, that’s not defence of freedom,” the EAM reportedly said.

Nijjar, one of India’s most wanted terrorists, with a Rs 10 lakh cash reward on his head, was shot dead on June 18 by two unidentified shooters outside a gurudwara in Surrey. He was the Khalistan Tiger Force’s (KTF) commander.

In a strongly worded statement, India said that Canada’s claims appeared to be “politically motivated” and urged the Trudeau government to crack down hard on terrorists and anti-India elements operating on its soil. As a result of the diplomatic blockade over Nijjar’s murder, India has now suspended visa services for Canadians.

Recently, on September 25, the Indian Government also announced that it was in the process of cancelling the registration of over a dozen Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) card holders for carrying out pro-Khalistan activities and anti-India propaganda.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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Siddhi Somani
Siddhi Somani
Siddhi Somani is known for her satirical and factual hand in Economic, Social and Political writing. Having completed her post graduation in Journalism, she is pursuing her Masters in Politics. The author meanwhile is also exploring her hand in analytics and statistics. (Twitter- @sidis28)

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