After Trudeau Meet, Modi Offers Subtle Message Against Separatists

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is scheduled to meet his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, on 23 February.

11 min read
Justin Trudeau and Narendra Modi at the Hyderabad house in New Delhi.

On Saturday, 24 February, the last day of a controversy-mired week-long state visit to the country, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said only tolerance is not enough in a pluralistic country like India and that a society needs love to exist in harmony.

Trudeau met PM Narendra Modi on Friday, 23 February, after controversial reports of convicted Khalistani separatist Jaspal Atwal being invited by the Canadian government to dine with the PM surfaced on the media. The two leaders inked six pacts, including one on energy cooperation.

  • Addressing the United Nations Young Changemakers Conclave 2018, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said ‘Diversity is a key to resilience and success’
  • India and Canada signed multiple agreements in the areas of energy, education, ICT, sports and others
  • PM Modi met his Canadian counterpart on 23 February
  • After a controversy over Jaspal Atwal being invited to dinner with Trudeau, the Canadian High Commission said it rescinded the invitation of the Khalistani separatist
  • Responding to the controversy, Trudeau asserted on 22 February, “He should never have received an invitation”
7:29 PM , 26 Feb

Tolerance Not Enough, Need Love to Live in Pluralistic World: Trudeau

Capping off the trip on Saturday, 24 February, Trudeau told a gathering of nearly 5,000 Indian students and young professionals that people in the world needed to recognise everyone's rights and not discriminate against them for who they were and what their backgrounds were.

The schoolteacher-turned-politician made these remarks at the United Nations Young Changemakers Conclave at a packed Indira Gandhi Stadium in New Delhi:

Diversity, pluralism, bringing people together with different backgrounds, different stories... that matters. Understanding that everyone has a right to a complete life lived in respect and love and acceptance is essential.
5:48 PM , 24 Feb

Here is a List of 9 Canadian Operatives that Figured in Amarinder-Trudeau Talks

The list of nine alleged Canada-based Khalistani operatives submitted by Punjab CM Amarinder Singh to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday in Amritsar includes six alleged members of International Sikh Youth Federation (ISYF), and three linked to Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) and Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF), Indian Express reported.

Gurjeet Singh Cheema, Gurpreet Singh, Gurjinder Singh Pannu, KCF activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar and Malkeet Singh are the alleged ISYF activists included in the list, the report added. Sources in the Punjab government told Indian Express that while the other four have not been booked by the police, reports of their involvement have been informed through intelligence inputs.

4:02 PM , 24 Feb

Canadian PM Gifted Footprint Painting of Rescued Pachyderm

Canadian PM Trudeau was presented with a footprint painting of a rescued pachyderm after his visit to an elephant conservation and care centre in Mathura, a city-based wildlife body which runs the centre said on 24 February.

Trudeau had visited the centre in Mathura run by Wildlife SOS, along with his wife and their three children earlier this week during his India tour.

At the centre, Trudeau and his family observed veterinarians providing treatment to the rescued elephants and also learnt about the status of Asian elephants in India, Wildlife SOS said.

11:18 PM , 23 Feb

Those Challenging India's Unity Cannot be Tolerated: Modi After Meeting Trudeau

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a meeting at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi on Feb 23, 2018. 
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a meeting at Hyderabad House, in New Delhi on Feb 23, 2018. 
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@ChennaiUgal)

In a subtle message to the Trudeau government over its perceived soft-stand on the Khalistan issue, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday that those challenging India's sovereignty cannot be tolerated, even as India and Canada vowed to jointly combat terror threats, including from Sikh groups such as Babbar Khalsa.

After holding extensive talks with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau, Modi, at a joint press event, also asserted that there cannot be any space for those who misuse religion for political motives and promote separatism.

A document on 'framework for cooperation on countering terrorism and violent extremism', finalised by India's National Security Advisor and the National Security and Intelligence Advisor of Canada, was also released after the Modi-Trudeau meet.

They committed to work together to neutralise the threats emanating from terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda, ISIS, the Haqqani Network, LeT, JeM, Babbar Khalsa International, and the International Sikh Youth Federation.

While Babbar Khalsa International is a Sikh militant group based in Pakistan and which reportedly operates in Canada, Germany, the UK and some parts of India, the International Sikh Youth Federation is a proscribed outfit that aims to establish an independent homeland for the Sikhs of India.

Mincing no words, Modi also said, "There should be no space for those misusing faith for political goals and sowing seeds of division. Those who challenge sovereignty, unity and integrity of our countries cannot be tolerated." Later, a joint statement said the two leaders reaffirmed the "breadth and scope" of Canada-India relations, based on the fundamental principle of respect for sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of the two countries.

The statement as well as Modi’s remarks come in the backdrop of Canada’s perceived pro-Khalistan approach, criticised by many including Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

Published: 22 Feb 2018, 5:32 PM IST