HomeWorldIndia condemns activities of 'extremist elements' in Canada; Khalistan referendum 'ridiculous'

India condemns activities of ‘extremist elements’ in Canada; Khalistan referendum ‘ridiculous’

New Delhi: Terming the so-called Khalistan referendum conducted by separatist groups a “ridiculous exercise”, India on Thursday said it had expressed concern to Canada about the use of its territory by politically motivated “extremist elements”. . A large crowd of Canadian Sikhs took part in voting for the Khalistan referendum in Brampton, Canada on 19 September and asked whether Indian Punjab should not be a separate country. Speaking at a weekly media briefing in New Delhi, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said that India has expressed serious concern over the issue of referendum.

He said India has strongly objected that “politically motivated exercises by extremist elements” are allowed in a friendly country like Canada. “We would call it a ridiculous exercise. A ridiculous exercise by extremists and radical elements supporting the so-called Khalistan referendum in Canada,” Bagchi said. He said India has taken up the issue with the Canadian authorities and reiterated its respect for India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“The matter has been taken up with the Canadian authorities through diplomatic channels. The Government of Canada has reiterated that they respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India and they will not recognize the so called referendum that is taking place in Canada, “However, we find it highly objectionable that a politically motivated exercise by extremist elements is allowed in a friendly country. You are all aware of the history of violence in this regard,” a foreign ministry spokesperson said. Bagchi said that the Indian government would continue to pressurize the Canadian government on the matter.

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