Canada is not trying to provoke India by suggesting its agents were linked to the murder of a Khalistani terrorist but Ottawa wants New Delhi to address the issue properly, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Tuesday.
“The government of India needs to take this matter with the utmost seriousness. We are doing that, we are not looking to provoke or escalate,” he told reporters. Earlier in the day, India dismissed the Canadian government’s accusations as absurd.
India today expelled a senior Canadian diplomat in a reciprocal move over Trudeau’s charge that it played a role in the June killing of a Khalistani terrorist. The diplomat, who is unnamed, has five days to leave the country.
The Canadian Prime Minister yesterday said his government had “credible allegations” linking Hardeep Singh Nijjar’s killing with the “agents of the Government of India”. The Indian government rejected the allegation as “absurd and motivated”.
The spat deals a fresh blow to diplomatic ties, with New Delhi unhappy over Sikh separatist activity in Canada. It now threatens trade ties too, with talks on a proposed trade deal frozen last week.