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Stephen Harper Defends India – Uses Strong Words Against Khalistan Movement 

Former Prime Minister of Canada spoke unequivocally in support of India condemning Khalistan backers operating from Canada. He was giving his acceptance speech after being honoured with the CIF Global Indian Award 2019, where he mentioned that during his regime his government refused any sort of relationship with the forces that sought to bring the battles of the past to Canada and to divide the “great country that is modern India”. Stephen Harper, during his tenure (2006-2015) gave Canada-India bilateral relationship , new depth and made two official visits to India. He is the first person of non-Indian origin to be felicitated with CIF’s Global Indian Award. A former PM of Canada mentioning Khalistan and his government’s disassociation with forces trying to reignite the issue was very well received not only by the audience but by the community at large. However, Government of India is concerned about escalating
Khalistani operatives and outside of India. India’s External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar raised the issue with his Canadian counterpart Chrystia Freeland during the G20 Summit. Jaishankar’s meeting with Freeland on the sidelines of G20 summit was the first bilateral meeting since PM Justin Trudeau’s
controversy laden India visit. Canadian government’s elimination of ‘Khalistani extremism’ from its 2018 report on terror threats is another point of contention and India has made it clear that bilateral ties can only smoothen between the two countries when Ottawa addresses to New Delhi’s concerns. Punjab CM Capt. Amarinder Singh recently mentioned “Canada’s failure to check anti-India activities being carried out from its soil would would be detrimental to its own security and interest in the long run.”

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