Jaishankar condemns ‘celebration’ of Indira Gandhi’s assassination in Canada

The Minister said there is a problem with the space provided to "separatists, to extremists, to people who advocate violence" in Canada.

Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar condemned the alleged celebration of Indira Gandhi’s assassination in Brampton, Canada. His comments came after a video depicting Gandhi’s killing went viral on June 7, 2023. The Minister expressed his disappointment over the video filmed in Brampton where almost 28 per cent of the population is of Indian descent.

At a press briefing, Jaishankar said Canada’s apparent tolerance of pro-Khalistan elements is ‘not good for Canada and its relationship with India.’ “…I think there is a bigger issue involved. Frankly, we are at a loss to understand, other than the requirement of the vote bank politics, why anybody would do this?,” he said.

“ I think there is a larger underlying issue about this space which is given to separatists, to extremists, to people who advocate violence. I think it is not good for the relationship. It is not good for Canada,” the Minister further added.

The video that sparked Jaishankar’s response was a tableau that showed turban-clad men pointing their guns toward Gandhi with a poster that read ‘Revenge for attack on Shri Darbar Sahib’, referring to Operation Blue Star in June 1984 where Indian Armed forces stormed the Golden Temple to remove Indian militant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, a leading figure of the Khalistan movement.

Cameron McKay, High Commissioner for Canada in India, addressed the video with a tweet that read, “I am appalled by reports of an event in Canada that celebrated the assassination of late Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. There is no place in Canada for hate or the glorification of violence. I categorically condemn these activities.”

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