'Unacceptable Interference': India Summons Canadian Envoy, Says Trudeau's Comments On Farmer Protests Encouraged Gathering Of Extremists

Swarajya Staff

Dec 04, 2020, 04:43 PM | Updated 04:43 PM IST

Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Just days after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau waded into controversy by speaking about farmers' protests in Punjab, the Ministry of External Affairs today summoned Canadian envoy to deliver a stern message.

The statement released by the Ministry of External Affairs said that the High Commissioner was summoned today. It said that the envoy was told that "comments by the Canadian Prime Minister, some Cabinet Ministers and Members of Parliament on issues relating to Indian farmers constitute an unacceptable interference in our internal affairs".

Commenting on how Trudeau's comments have emboldened fringe elements in Canada the statement added that "these comments have encouraged gatherings of extremist activities in front of our High Commission and Consulates in Canada that raise issues of safety and security".

Earlier this week on the occasion of Gurpurab Trudeau speaking on farmers' protests in Punjab said that the 'situation is concerning' and that 'Canada will always be there to defend the rights of peaceful protestors'. These comments were delivered in an online event and shared through the Canadian Prime Minister's Twitter account

Trudeau's colleague, the Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Singh Sajjan had also chosen to comment and said, "Many of my constituents have family there and are worried about the safety of their loved ones. Healthy democracies allow peaceful protest."

Trudeau's comments are largely seen as the Canadian leader's attempts to mobilise and assuage the sentiments of Indian Sikhs living in Canada. The Sikh diaspora has considerable influence and power in the Canadian political processes, and therefore political parties find many ways to appease this constituency.

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