India on Friday issued an advisory for Indian nationals and students in Canada to remain vigilant amid increasing incidents of crimes and anti-India activities in the country.
In a statement, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said Indian missions in Canada have taken up these incidents with the Canadian authorities and requested them to probe these crimes. "There has been a sharp increase in incidents of hate crimes, sectarian violence and anti-India activities in Canada. The Ministry of External Affairs and our High Commission/Consulates General in Canada have taken up these incidents with the Canadian authorities and requested them to investigate the said crimes and take appropriate action," the MEA said in a statement while stressing that "the perpetrators of these crimes have not been brought to justice so far in Canada."
"In view of the increasing incidences of crimes as described above, Indian nationals and students from India in Canada and those proceeding to Canada for travel/education are advised to exercise due caution and remain vigilant," the statement added. The advisory also said Indian nationals and students from India in Canada may also register with the High Commission of India in Ottawa or the Consulates General of India in Toronto and Vancouver through their respective websites, or the MADAD portal madad.gov.in.
"Registration would enable the High Commission and the Consulates General to better connect with Indian citizens in Canada in the event of any requirement or emergency," the advisory said. This advisory comes a day after India on Thursday termed the so-called Khalistan referendum conducted by separatist groups as a "farcical exercise".
Speaking at a weekly media briefing, MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said India had conveyed concerns to Canada about the use of its territory by politically motivated "extremist elements". India has deeply objected that "politically motivated exercises by extremist elements" are allowed to take place in a friendly country like Canada, he said. "We would term it as farcical exercise. A farcical exercise was held by extremists and radical elements supporting the so-called Khalistan referendum in Canada," Bagchi said.
He said India has taken up the issue with Canadian authorities and they reiterated respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India.
"The matter has been taken up with the Canadian authorities through diplomatic channels. The government of Canada has reiterated that they respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India and they will not recognise the so-called referendum which is taking place in Canada," the MEA spokesperson said.