South Asia and Beyond

Canada: Police Arrest Two Teens In Shooting Incident, Reject ‘Foreign’ Role Claim

 Canada: Police Arrest Two Teens In Shooting Incident, Reject ‘Foreign’ Role Claim

Police in Surrey, British Columbia in Canada have denied reports of “foreign interference” in a shooting that targeted the residence of one Simranjeet, associate of the late Khalistani extremist Hardeep Nijjar. Pro-Khalistani groups like the Sikhs for Justice had alleged an Indian hand given that Simranjeet had helped organize a demonstration outside the Indian consulate in Vancouver last month.

Moninder Singh, spokesman for the British Columbia Gurudwaras Council and a prominent separatist himself, also said “…feels like this is the Indian state or their actors, that are playing their parts here to kind of scare them off from … the activism work he is doing.”

But police have already charged two teenagers for the shooting and in a statement said “Investigators have not established any links to foreign interference in relation to this matter.”

The teenagers have not been identified since they are minors but they have been charged with discharging a firearm and possessing a loaded prohibited firearm. They are currently in custody awaiting court proceedings.

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The Sikhs for Justice has also accused India of being behind a shooting in Brampton near Toronto. The under-construction house that was targeted belonged to Inderjeet Singh Ghosal who helped organise the so-called Khalistan referendum last September after the killing of Nijjar. There do not appear to have been any breakthroughs in this investigation.

What’s clear is that India Canada ties have nosedived since Nijjar was killed, and following Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau’s claim in Parliament pointing to links with India. The investigation does not appear to have gone far and India has said it is ready to help if the Canadians can provide information. South Block is still waiting.

There is also no indication the Canadian government is willing to take seriously, India’s repeated complaints about Khalistani activities and the danger it poses to Indian diplomats posted there. It seems Trudeau, dependent as he is on the support from Jagmeet Singh’s New Democratic Party, prefers to turn a blind eye to the unsavoury activities of some pro-Khalistan Sikhs in Canada.

Surya Gangadharan

Thirty eight years in journalism, widely travelled, history buff with a preference for Old Monk Rum. Current interest/focus spans China, Technology and Trade. Recent reads: Steven Colls Directorate S and Alexander Frater's Chasing the Monsoon. Netflix/Prime video junkie. Loves animal videos on Facebook. Reluctant tweeter.