Sikhs of America chairman lambasts Trudeau, says Canada PM ‘digging hole for himself’
A number of Sikh community leaders in Canada expressed worry over the ongoing diplomatic rift between India and Canada and said majority of Canadian Sikhs do not support Khalistani extremism.
Jesse Singh, chairman of Sikhs of America (Picture: X account of ANI/@ANI)
AMID the ongoing diplomatic tussle between India and Canada, the Sikh community in the North American nation lashed out at prime minister Justin Trudeau over his government’s handling of the Khalistan problem and accused it of downgrading ties with the south Asian country.
Jesse Singh, chairman of Sikhs of America, told CNN-News18 that Trudeau’s way of handling the situation was disappointing. He also told the channel that Sikhs were being used as political pawns in Canada only to get support for Canadian leader Jagmeet Singh. He said not more than 5,000 people join the protest or referendums when they take place.
“Majority of the Sikhs living outside India do not support Khalistani ideology. They support India and I want to let you all know that we stand united with India,” Singh was quoted as saying by the channel.
He also advised the Narendra Modi government to “aggressively” pursue the issue saying a few people “have hijacked the Sikh cause and are damaging the whole community”.
The Sikhs of America chairman also said that Trudeau’s remarks seemed to be politically motivated and said the latter was “digging a hole for himself”.
On Monday (18), Trudeau alleged links between India government agents with the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a Khalistan separatist leader, in Surrey in British Columbia in June. India strongly objected to the accusation and soon after, both sides were seen expelling each other’s diplomats with Canada showing the way.
Dr Azad Kaushik, president of the National Alliance of Indo Canadians, told CNN-News18 that the majority of Canadian Sikhs are against Khalistani extremism.
He said politics was behind such a situation and added that the Indo Canadian community has been worried for its safety for some time now. Referring to warnings issued by a Khalistani separatist leader in a video recently to Hindu Canadians asking them to return to India, he said the development was concerning.
Kaushik urged the Canadian authorities to assure safety to all citizens and said that nobody can ask anyone to leave like that and that such threats are not allowed.
He also said none of the politicians denounced the statement asking the Hindus to exit Canada and that the Canadian prime minister was forced to support the extremist elements as the Khalistan supporters are backing him politically.