As the India-Canada row intensifies, MEA has urged Toronto to cut down the variety of diplomats in the country after allegations of the killing Hardeep Nijjar.
India on Thursday requested Canada to downsize its diplomatic presence in the country as relations between the the 2 nations plunged to an an all-time low following Ottawa’s allegations towards New Delhi over the killing of a Khalistani separatist on Canadian soil.
External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi mentioned the scale of Canadian diplomatic workers in India is bigger than what New Delhi has in Canada and that there needs to be a parity in power and rank equivalence in the mutual presence.
“We have informed the Canadian government that there should be parity in strength and rank equivalence in our mutual diplomatic presence. Their numbers here are very much higher than our’s in Canada. The details of this are being worked out,” he mentioned at a media briefing.
“I assume that there will be a reduction from the Canadian side,” he added.
India’s determination to ask Canada to downsize its diplomatic presence is being seen as New Delhi hardening its place on the continuing diplomatic row that erupted following Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s allegations of a “potential” involvement of Indian brokers in the killing Khalistani separatist chief Hardeep Singh Nijjar in June.
India on Tuesday rejected the allegations as “absurd” and “motivated” and expelled a senior Canadian diplomat in a tit-for-tat transfer to Ottawa’s expulsion of an Indian official over the case.
Nijjar was shot lifeless by two masked gunmen outdoors on June 18 in British Columbia. India had designated him a terrorist in 2020.
“Safe haven is being provided in Canada. We want the Canadian government to not do so. It should either take action against those facing terrorism charges or send them to India to face justice,” Bagchi mentioned.
He mentioned has India put up extradition request or different help associated a minimum of 20 to 25 people in the previous few years however there was no useful responses from Ottawa.
On issues relating to safety of Indian missions in addition to Indian diplomats in Canada Bagchi mentioned it’s the host authorities’s duty to present safety.
Separately, Canada mentioned it’s assessing its workers complement in India and taking motion to guarantee the protection of its diplomats in the country, claiming that a few of them have acquired threats on varied social media platforms.
The Canadian High Commission mentioned Ottawa expects New Delhi to present for the safety of its diplomats and consular officers in India and that it has determined to “temporarily” alter workers presence in the country as a precautionary measure.
“In light of the current environment where tensions have heightened, we are taking action to ensure the safety of our diplomats. With some diplomats having received threats on various social media platforms, Global Affairs Canada is assessing its staff complement in India,” the excessive fee mentioned.
Global Affairs Canada handles Canada’s diplomatic and consular relations.
“As a result, and out of an abundance of caution, we have decided to temporarily adjust staff presence in India. All of our locations are staffed by diplomats and locally-engaged staff to ensure business and operational continuity,” it mentioned.
In responding to media queries, the excessive fee mentioned Global Affairs Canada will proceed to take all “appropriate measures to protect the health and safety of all our personnel, including locally-engaged staff, and to protect our operations in India”.
“Decisions are made based on a number of factors including the professional profile of an employee or personal circumstances,” it mentioned.
“In the context of respect for obligations under the Vienna conventions, we expect India to provide for the security of our accredited diplomats and consular officers in India, just as we are for theirs here,” it added.
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