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Indian State’s Stance During Trudeau Visit Would Further Alienate Sikhs From India

February 25, 2018 | By

Chandigarh: Sikh intellectuals and thinkers gathered at Sri Guru Granth Sahib Bhawan at Sector 28 Chandigarh yesterday, where the issues related to Indian state and media’s approach towards the Sikhs was discussed. The meeting was attended by Advocate Amar Singh Chahal, Jagdev Singh Sodhi, Jaspal Singh Sidhu, Gurdarshan Singh Dhillon, Khushhal Singh, Amarjit Singh, Rajinder Singh, Gurpreet Singh, Gurtej Singh and Kartar Singh Goshti who expressed their dismay at India according a lukewarm welcome to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who has just ended his seven-day visit to the country on the invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau With his wife Sophie and Children at Darbar Sahib Complex [February 21, 2018]

S. Khushhal Singh of Kendri Sri Guru Singh Sabha has issued a statement, which reads as follows:

It is unfortunate Mr Justin Trudeau was shown a cold-shoulder by Prime Minister Modi and a reception party arranged in honor of Trudeau and his team was deliberately kept a lowkey affair. The Sikh Community’s political clout in Canada is well known with four Sikhs holding important portfolios in Trudeau cabinet. Indian Government’s stance has sent a wrong signal to the Sikhs in India and abroad, who are bound to feel further alienated.

The Indian Government, too, has missed an opportunity to give an open-hearted welcome to a dignitary, known for his liberal outlook who could have provided better opportunities to Indians to prosper and flourish in his country.

The Sikh thinkers seek to remind the Indian rulers that Indian diaspora has keenly been watching the Indian State adopting double standards with regard to the Sikhs. It is noteworthy Indian establishment has been encouraging Hindutva forces and snubbing Indian minorities’ initiatives abroad. During the Presidential election in America, a Hindu businessman, Mr. Shalabh Kumar of Chicago contributed one million US dollars to Trump’s election campaign and formed a Republic-Hindu Coalition organization to support the Republican party, so that he could muster help for the cause of Hindutva. Kumar, owning the electronics manufacturing company AVG Advanced Technologies, is also one of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most powerful supporters in the US and he is also known for his anti-Muslim posture there. Such posturing is fundamentally opposed to the democratic character of the American and Indian Constitutions. While no eye brows were raised over the Hindutva supporters abroad why the Sikhs are being targeted for peacefully raising the issues of human and civil rights violations with regard to their kith and kin back in India? In the wake of treatment given in India to Trudeau’s team and official bucking up of the Indian media to raise superfluous issues of 1980s, the hypocrisy of the Indian Government stands exposed, the Sikh thinkers said.

It is sad that the Indian Government, instead of using this opportunity for exchange of trade and driving other economic benefits with the sixth largest economy of world, remained stuck on its agenda of ‘Hindu Rashtra’ and deliberately ignored achievements of NRI Sikhs in Canada on political, social and economic fronts.

◊ ALSO READ: India Cold-Shoulders Trudeau To Mark Protest On Sikhs Assertion In Canada [OP-ED by Jaspal Singh Sidhu]

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