New Delhi [India] : Amid the tensions between India and Canada, the security of the Canada High Commission here was increased on Tuesday.
Several personnel of the Central Reserve Police and Delhi Police were deployed outside the Canadian High Commission.
This comes moments after India expelled a senior Canadian diplomat to India in a reciprocal move to Canada expelling a senior Indian diplomat.
Canadian High Commissioner to India, Cameron MacKay was summoned today to the South Block, the headquarters of the Ministry of External Affairs.
“The High Commissioner of Canada to India was summoned today and informed about the decision of the Government of India to expel a senior Canadian diplomat based in India,” a statement from the Ministry of External Affairs said today.
It added, “The concerned diplomat has been asked to leave India within the next five days.
The decision reflects the Government of India’s growing concern at the interference of Canadian diplomats in our internal matters and their involvement in anti-India activities”.
Meanwhile, India rejected the “absurd and motivated” claims made by the Canadian Prime Minister about New Delhi playing a role in the June killing of a Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
“We have seen and rejected the statement of the Canadian Prime Minister in their Parliament, as also the statement by their Foreign Minister,” said the MEA in an official statement.
“Allegations of the Indian government’s “involvement in any act of violence in Canada are absurd and motivated” the statement said.
It added, “Similar allegations were made by the Canadian Prime Minister to our Prime Minister and were completely rejected”.
The statement said India is a democratic polity with a strong commitment to the rule of law.
“Such unsubstantiated allegations seek to shift the focus from Khalistani terrorists and extremists, who have been provided shelter in Canada and continue to threaten India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The inaction of the Canadian Government on this matter has been a long-standing and continuing concern,” the MEA statement said.
The release states that Canadian political figures have openly expressed sympathy for such elements and that remains a matter of deep concern.
“The space given in Canada to a range of illegal activities including murders, human trafficking and organised crime is not new” read the release.
Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly on Monday said an Indian diplomat in Canada had been expelled, over allegations of the country’s involvement in the killing of the Khalistani leader Nijjar.
“We see this possible breach of sovereignty as completely unacceptable, and so, that is also why we’re coming (out) with this information (of the expulsion of the Indian diplomat) today,” Joly said at a news conference.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday accused the Indian government of being behind the fatal shooting of Khalistan Tiger Force chief Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada, CBC News reported.
Najjar, who was wanted in India, was gunned down outside a Gurdwara, in a parking area in Canada’s Surrey, British Columbia on June 18.
Hailing from Bharsinghpur village in Punjab’s Jalandhar, Nijjar was based in Surrey and had been declared “absconder” by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Earlier on Monday, speaking in a debate in the Canadian Parliament, Canadian PM Trudeau claimed his country’s national security officials had reasons to believe that “agents of the Indian government” carried out the killing of the Canadian citizen, who also served as the president of Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara.
“Canadian security agencies have been actively pursuing credible allegations of a potential link between agents of the Government of India and the killing of a Canadian citizen, Hardeep Singh Nijjar,” Trudeau said.
He stated that the involvement of a foreign hand or government in the killing of a Canadian citizen in Canada was unacceptable.
“Any involvement of a foreign government in the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil is an unacceptable violation of our sovereignty. It is contrary to the fundamental rules by which free, open, and democratic societies conduct themselves,” Trudeau added.