Canada Parliament holds moment of silence for Nijjar, India responds with ‘Kanishka bombing’ reminder

India-Canada Relations: The Indian Embassy in Vancouver responded to Canada House of Commons' moment of silence for Hardeep Singh Nijjar, classified as a ‘Khalistani Terrorist’ by the Indian government and reiterated India's stance against terrorism.

Livemint
Updated19 Jun 2024, 12:20 PM IST
File image of pro-independence supporters holding Khalistan flags during a protest outside India's consulate in Vancouver, Canada in September 2023.
File image of pro-independence supporters holding Khalistan flags during a protest outside India’s consulate in Vancouver, Canada in September 2023. (Reuters / Jennifer Gauthier )

India-Canada Relations: The Indian Embassy in Vancouver responded on June 19 to Canada's tribute the previous day commemorating the late Sikh separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar, who was allegedly assassinated last year.

In a thread post on the social networking site X (formerly known as Twitter), the embassy wrote: “India stands at the forefront of countering the menace of terrorism and works closely with all nations to tackle this global threat.”

“23 June 2024 marks the 39th Anniversary of the cowardly terrorist bombing of Air India flight 182 (Kanishka), in which 329 innocent victims, including 86 children, lost their lives in one of the most heinous terror-related air disasters in the history of civil aviation,” it said.

"A Memorial Service is scheduled at 1830 hrs on June 23, 2024 at the Air India Memorial at Stanley Park's Ceperley Playground area. @cgivancouver encourages members of the Indian Diaspora to join the event in a show of solidarity against terrorism,” the embassy added.

 

Also Read | Watch: Canada Parliament observes silence remembering terrorist Nijjar

Canada House of Commons Commemorates Nijjar's Death

India's response comes after the Canadian House of Commons on June 18 observed a moment of silence to commemorate the first anniversary of Singh's death. Singh has been termed a “Khalistani terrorist” by the Indian government.

Greg Fergus, Speaker of the House of Commons, urged Members of Parliament to observe a moment of silence, as decided by the House, to honour Nijjar.

Relations between India and Canada have been strained since the alleged assassination of Nijjar in June 2023 in British Columbia, Canada.

Also Read | Hindujas: A look at the billionaire family and their companies

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told CBC News that Narendra Modi's continuation as prime minister of India is an “opportunity” to engage on various significant matters. “Now that he's been re-elected, I believe there's an opportunity for us to engage, particularly on critical issues related to national security, ensuring the safety of Canadians, and upholding the rule of law,” he said.

India-Canada relations

45-year-old Nijjar, identified as a terrorist by India's National Investigation Agency (NIA) since 2020, was killed outside Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara in British Columbia on June 18, 2023. He has been included in the Indian government's list of "designated terrorists," alongside 40 other individuals.

Four Indian nationals — Karan Brar, 22, Kamalpreet Singh, 22, Karanpreet Singh, and Amandeep Singh, 22, are accused of killing Nijjar.

Also Read | Bomb scare: BMC headquarters, 50 hospitals in Mumbai get threat emails; probe on

Relations between India and Canada deteriorated significantly after Trudeau in September last year suggested the "potential" involvement of Indian agents in Nijjar's killing.

However, India has dismissed the accusations as "absurd" and "motivated." New Delhi has also said that Canada has not provided any "specific" evidence or relevant information in the Hardeep Singh Nijjar killing case.

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First Published:19 Jun 2024, 12:20 PM IST
HomeNewsIndiaCanada Parliament holds moment of silence for Nijjar, India responds with ‘Kanishka bombing’ reminder

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