India-Canada Relations: A Tumultuous Pathway – Top 10 Key Developments

date 25  September,  2023
time 2 mins read

The ties between India and Canada, two notable democracies on the global stage, have experienced a series of fluctuations lately. Both nations boast a rich legacy of shared understanding and cooperation. Dive with us into the ten pivotal events that have recently defined the contours of the India-Canada relationship.

  1. OCI Card Controversy:In a move that has raised eyebrows, the Indian authorities are on the verge of revoking the OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) cards of several individuals. The reason cited? Their involvement in propagating pro-Khalistan sentiments and disseminating anti-India content.
  2. Call for Dialogue: Recognizing the growing strain, Canada’s Defence Minister, Bill Blair, has stepped in, advocating for both nations to engage in talks. He believes that a dialogue can pave the way to mutual understanding and resolution.
  3. Protest at Jantar Mantar: The iconic Jantar Mantar witnessed a protest rally, where demonstrators expressed their dissatisfaction with the Canadian Premier, Justin Trudeau. The bone of contention? His perceived backing of Khalistani secessionists.
  4. Canada’s Foreign Policy Shift: In an intriguing twist, the Japan Times has highlighted Canada’s decision to recalibrate its foreign policy. Moving away from its traditional ‘middle-power approach’, Canada now seems keen to delve deeper into ‘Indo-Pacific diplomacy’. Interestingly, a parallel was drawn with the recent cooling of China-Canada ties.
  5. Five Eyes Intel and Accusations: Adding more fuel to the fire, the US Ambassador to Canada pointed towards shared intelligence among the Five Eyes nations. This intel supposedly indicates a potential connection between Indian governmental representatives and the demise of a Sikh separatist leader, Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
  6. Concerns Among Indian Students: The ripple effect of the diplomatic standoff is being felt by Indian students in Canada. Distraught parents back home are voicing concerns about their children’s well-being and their ability to concentrate on academic pursuits amidst the prevailing uncertainties.
  7. Action Against Khalistani Activists: The Indian investigative agencies haven’t been idle. They’ve seized assets belonging to Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, an alleged Khalistani extremist, accusing him of orchestrating terror plots on Indian soil.
  8. Skyrocketing Airfares: A tangible sign of the underlying tensions can be seen in the soaring ticket prices for flights between New Delhi and Toronto. Travellers are now paying exorbitant amounts, with fares reaching unprecedented highs.
  9. Visa Services on Pause: In a move that has left many perplexed, India has put a temporary halt on its visa services in Canada. This was brought to light when BLS International, a visa service provider, shared a notice from the Indian consulate.
  • Canada’s Visa Issuance: In contrast, Canadian immigration authorities haven’t reciprocated India’s move. They continue to process and grant visas to Indian citizens keen on travelling to Canada.
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