The Indian mission in Canada has asked for additional security as Khalistani and Pakistani elements have joined the protests near the high commission and Indian consulates in the country. Ever since the farm bill protest started in India, fringe elements in Canada have been protesting near the Indian High Commission in Ottawa, which has raised the fear of the about the security of the campus.
The issue was also raised during the summoning of Canadian envoy to India Nadir Patel on Friday. Ministry of external affairs had summoned him after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau commented on the farmers’ protests, expressing his “concerns”.
The release by MEA said, “comments have encouraged gatherings of extremist activities in front” of Indian High Commission and Consulates in Canada that “raise issues of safety and security.” Calling, the Canadian Government to “ensure the fullest security of Indian diplomatic personnel”, the statement asked Canadian Leadership to “refrain from pronouncements that legitimize extremist activism.”
The fringe Khalistani element has the support of Pakistani’s spy agency ISI, which would be keen to see the current developments as an opportunity to create trouble for Indian diplomats and mission. Earlier this year, a Canadian think tank MacDonald-Laurier Institute said that the cause of Khalistan has considerable support of Pakistan.
Last year Pakistani protestors vandalized the Indian mission in London. The protestors were protesting against India removing special status for the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir and had considerable support of the Pakistani diaspora.
Meanwhile, Indian diplomats in Canada have been giving background briefings to the Canadian government, Parliamentarians, business, diaspora for months on farm bills, including in the larger context of reforms.
The briefings have talked about the need for reforms in the Agriculture sector and how farmers will have the freedom to sell their products to who they want, where they want and will lead to better price discovery mechanism.
Interestingly, it was pointed out, how Canada has been a critic of India’s minimum support price at WTO and how the recent comments by the leadership of the country are “at odds with Canada’s aggressive posture”.