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Justin Trudeau Defends Official Who Claimed Indian Hand in Khalistani Extremist Jaspal Atwal's Invitation

In the House of Commons, during his first Question Hour since returning from India, the Prime Minister was asked if he agreed to or disavowed the allegations made by a senior security official.

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Updated:February 28, 2018, 10:35 AM IST
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Justin Trudeau Defends Official Who Claimed Indian Hand in Khalistani Extremist Jaspal Atwal's Invitation
File photo of Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (Reuters)
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New Delhi: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau defended the government official who claimed that 'rogue' political factions in India orchestrated Khalistani extremist Jaspal Atwal's invitation to a formal dinner.

In the House of Commons, during his first Question Hour since returning from India, the Prime Minister was asked if he agreed to or disavowed the allegations made by a senior security official.

"I can understand where the opposition finds this difficult because for 10 years it used the professional public service for partisan ends. It torqued the public service every possible way it could. When one of our top diplomats and security officials says something to Canadians, it is because they know it to be true," Trudeau replied.

Canadian high commissioner Nadir Patel had invited Atwal for dinner, which he was hosting for the visiting Trudeau and his delegation. Foreign media outlets even got access to Atwal's photograph with Trudeau's wife Sophie and Canadian minister Amarjeet Sohi at the event in Mumbai on February 20.

The subsequent uproar led to the invite being cancelled.

Trudeau later said that Atwal should "never have received an invitation" to the event. The Indian government is still trying to ascertain how the convicted militant obtained a visa.
| Edited by: Aditya Nair
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