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Amarinder -Trudeau Meet: India's Stand on Khalistan Should be Made Clear to Canadian PM, Says SAD

The issue dates back to April last year when Singh had said that five Sikh ministers of the Justin Trudeau government in Canada were Khalistani sympathisers and refused to meet their defence minister, Harjit Sajjan, who was scheduled to arrive in India later that month.

Aishwarya Kumar | News18.com@aishwaryak03

Updated:February 21, 2018, 8:58 AM IST
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Amarinder -Trudeau Meet: India's Stand on Khalistan Should be Made Clear to Canadian PM, Says SAD
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau along with his family spins cotton on a traditional 'charkha' in Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad. (Image: PTI)
New Delhi: Amid fears of Khalistan issue re-stirring, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh will receive Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Amritsar on Wednesday after an initial reluctance.

Ending the uncertainty over the meeting, Singh took to Twitter on Monday and announced his decision to meet Trudeau following persistent requests from the visiting delegation.

“Understandably, the CM was worried about space given to the idea of Khalistan (a separate state for Sikh community) among certain sections in Canada. There was pressure from Canada too for both leaders to meet,” sources close to the chief minister told News18.

A video of Ujjal Dosanjh from the Canadian House of Commons asking both leaders to meet was also shared as an effort to break the ice.

The issue dates back to April last year when Singh had said that five Sikh ministers of the Justin Trudeau government in Canada were Khalistani sympathisers and refused to meet their defence minister, Harjit Sajjan, who was scheduled to arrive in India later that month.

The Canadian Press reported on Sunday that Canada’s high commissioner was dispatched to set up a meeting with Singh, Trudeau and Sajjan on the request of Canada’s defence minister who is of Punjabi origin.

“The last time when the CM refused to meet the Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, we did not approve of it. This time around, however, we are hoping that the misunderstandings have been cleared,” Shiromani Akali Dal leader and Rajya Sabha member Naresh Gujral said, adding that the meeting was welcome but the party hopes Singh would raise the issue of Khalistan with Trudeau.

“Singh should make India’s position on Khalistan clear to the visiting PM. No sensible Indian approves of Khalistan. We’re hoping that the CM raises the issue of taking action against the so-called Khalistani hot heads,” he said.

The Punjab CM would be the first senior Indian political leader to meet Canada’s PM, who has so far not been seen with any prominent leaders in the three days he has spent in India. Trudeau, along with his family, was received by MoS Agriculture Gajendra Singh on his arrival earlier this week.

The low-key welcome of Trudeau raised many eyebrows as neither Prime Minister Narendra Modi nor External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj extended any greeting on the arrival of the Canadian delegation. However, the PM is scheduled to meet his Canadian counterpart on Friday.

Meanwhile, reiterating Canada’s commitment to “one united India”, Trudeau on Tuesday said that his government was serious about cracking down on extremism.

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| Edited by: Sumedha Kirti
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