Countries friendly to India cannot let anti-nationals thrive on their shores

Glorifying Indira Gandhi’s assassination during pro-Khalistan rally in Canada sparks reactions

Canada’s relationship with India can be seriously impacted if it does not control the “anti-India” activities taking place within Canada.

Already being criticized by India for harboring so-called Khalistani activists and having a sympathetic attitude towards them, the latest event which has sparked off a  widespread reaction is the public celebration of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s assassination in a sikh rally in Barampton, Canada, where a tableau depicting Gandhi’s sikh guards gunning her down with guns at close quarters while she stands with raised hands in a white saree streaked with blood.

It is just “abhorrent” and “insulting” to see the former  Indian Prime Minister’s murder being “celebrated” in this fashion by those who justify the crime – the Khalistan activists.

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The tableau had Khalistani flags and a poster reading, “Revenge of the attack on Shri Darbar Sahib.” Another poster that the tableau carried read, “Never Forget 1984. Sikh Genocide.”

These kinds of posters are clearly inflammatory and pro-Khalistan.

It is shocking how  Canadian authorities seem to have given the Khalistani elements complete freedom to voice their demands in whichever way they feel like it.

The moot question here is how they can allow pro-Khalistani elements to propagate their demand and continue to have a friendly diplomatic relationship with India.

Canada which houses large number of sikhs must realise that the Khalistan movement is a separatist movement seeking to create a separate nation of Khalistan by carving out of India,  primarily the state of Punjab and other neighbouring areas including Punjabi speaking areas of Pakistan.

Now this is a demand that no sovereign constitutional and democratically elected nation can tolerate or allow. The insurgency will be stamped out by the government of any political hue because separatism strikes at the very root of a nation.

It is not that India is the only country to face such regional separatist desires. Many countries of the world face the problem of regional aspirations and even armed rebellion against the government and the nation. But either the rebellion is crushed, or the rebels are assimilated into the mainstream for the nation to exist as it is.

What is wrong in this case is a nation friendly to India like Canada seems to be doing nothing to stop the pro- Khalistani elements from fanning the fire of separatism.

The Khalistan experiment is a failed experiment in India. Khalistani problem for years had continued in Punjab with concomitant violence and terrorism.

But the Indian government continued to tackle it for years and for the past several years the state which had completely ruined its economic prosperity and peaceful atmosphere seemed to have returned to normalcy.

The recent resurgence of the Khalistani movement seems to have started again, highlight of the which is the recently Amritpal episode.

He styled himself as a Khalistani leader like Bhaindranwale and tried create trouble in Punjab but central government swiftly arrested him before he could be the cause of any further unrest. Significantly, this time round their was not much popular support for him.

Clearly, Punjab being an important  border state close to Pakistan, its strategic importance is of great interest internationally.

Powers that are against India can always use the Khalistan ploy to further their own political interests in the area.

As it is clearly a case of national integrity, India must stand politically united and put down anyone sympathising or sheltering those who are keen on breaking India.

The present case is clearly disgusting to see that the Canadian authorities simply watched while the atrocious tableaux was allowed to proceed.

External Affairs Minister Jaishankar in no uncertain terms made it clear that such actions will “not be good” for India’s  country to country relationship with Canada ,Australia and UK (those who give “space” to separatists and extremists advocating violence.)

With large per centage of sikhs residing in these countries, External Affairs Minister must have touched a raw nerve when he pointed out that only “requirements of vote bank politics” could be the reason for these countries to be soft on sikh separatist groups.

Before the issue could turn serious  Canadian High Commissioner in India, Cameron MacKay, clearly softened it by stating “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 for the glorification of violence. I categorically condemn these activities”.

As it is clearly an issue of international diplomacy one must follow the rule that if you have friendly relations with one country, you do not allow its enemies to thrive in your country.

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