“Not lax on immigration”: Canada’s immigration minister responds to criticism on welcoming people with criminal links

Toronto [Canada], May 7: Following arrests of three Indian nationals over their alleged links to the killing of India-designated terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar, and assertive remarks made by External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar on the issue, Canada’s Immigration Minister Marc Miller has expressed his disapproval, saying, the EAM is “entitled to his opinion”.
Responding to a reporter’s query on Jaishankar’s remarks on these arrests, Minister Miller said, “We’re not lax. And the Indian foreign minister is entitled to his opinion. I’m going to let him speak his mind. It’s just not accurate,” as broadcast on Cable Public Affairs Channel (CPAC), a Canadian speciality television channel.
The External Affairs Minister recently criticised Canada saying they were welcoming people from India with links to organised crime, ignoring warnings by New Delhi.
When pressed on whether the accused individuals were on student visas, Miller refrained from providing specifics, citing the ongoing police investigation. He said that such inquiries should be directed to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
Criticising the Justin Trudeau-led dispensation for giving space and legitimacy to “extremism, separatism, and advocates of violence” in the name of free speech, Jaishankar on May 5 said that Canada has been issuing visas to people with links to organised crime despite warnings from New Delhi.
Jaishankar said some people in Canada, with ‘pro-Pakistan leanings’, have organised themselves politically and taken the shape of an influential political lobby.
Nijjar was shot and killed after he had stepped out of a gurdwara in Surrey in June last year. A video clip of his killing reportedly surfaced in March this year, purportedly showing Nijjar being fatally shot by assailants, in what was claimed to be ‘contract killing’.
In 2023, the Canadian PM alleged an Indian hand in the killing, a claim that was vehemently denied by India which called it ‘absurd and motivated’. The Canadian Police have also not given any evidence linking India to the killing.
On May 4, Canadian police released photographs of three persons arrested in the killing of Nijjar. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in a statement named the three men, all Indian nationals, as Karanpreet Singh, 28, Kamalpreet Singh, 22 and Karan Brar, 22 and released their photographs. The trio were arrested in Edmonton City in Alberta. (AGENCIES)

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