“Respect for each other’s concerns”: PM Modi to Trudeau’s congratulatory message | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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“Respect for each other’s concerns”: PM Modi to Trudeau’s congratulatory message

Jun 10, 2024 11:07 AM IST

Bilateral relations have been in freefall since Trudeau alleged in September last year that Indian government agents were linked to the killing of Khalistani activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar

The testy nature of India-Canada ties was on display when Prime Minister Narendra Modi responded on Monday to a message from his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau by saying New Delhi looks forward to working with Ottawa on the basis of “respect for each other’s concerns”.

Modi was responding to a congratulatory message posted by the Canadian premier’s official account on X. (File photo)
Modi was responding to a congratulatory message posted by the Canadian premier’s official account on X. (File photo)

Bilateral relations have been in freefall since Trudeau alleged in September last year that Indian government agents were linked to the killing of Khalistani activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar. India dismissed the accusation as “absurd” and has maintained that Canada hasn’t provided any evidence to back up its allegation.

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“Thank you @CanadianPM for the congratulatory message. India looks forward to working with Canada based on mutual understanding and respect for each other’s concerns,” Modi said in a post on X on Monday morning, in an apparent reference to India’s long-standing concerns about the activities of pro-Khalistan elements in Canada.

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Modi was responding to a congratulatory message posted by the Canadian premier’s official account on X on June 6.

Trudeau had said in that message that Canada is willing to work with Modi’s new government to advance ties, provided they are “anchored” to human rights and diversity.

“Congratulations to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his electoral victory. Canada stands ready to work with his government to advance the relationship between our nations’ peoples — anchored to human rights, diversity, and the rule of law,” the message had said.

Modi and Trudeau have had an uneasy relationship and last met on the margins of the G20 Summit held in New Delhi last September, just days before the Canadian premier made the allegation about Nijjar’s killing in the Canadian Parliament.

They are set to come face to face when Modi makes his first foreign visit after becoming premier for a third term to attend the outreach session of the G7 Summit in Italy on July 14.

Nijjar was declared a terrorist by India in 2020 and was wanted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

The Indian side also has serious concerns about Canada’s failure to act against provocative actions of Khalistani operatives, such as posters identifying senior Indian diplomats and holding out threats against them, and rallies like the one outside the Indian consulate in Vancouver last week that had a float depicting the assassination of former prime minister Indira Gandhi.

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