“Unacceptable interference in our internal affairs”: Angered by Justin Trudeau’s support for protesting Indian farmers, India summons Canadian High Commissioner

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India on Friday summoned the Canadian High Commissioner to register its displeasure over the recent comments made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, extending his support to protesting farmers on the Delhi-Haryana border.

The Indian ministry of external affairs said in a statement that the Canadian High Commissioner was summoned on Friday and ‘informed that comments by the Canadian Prime Minister, some Cabinet Ministers and Members of Parliament on issues relating to Indian farmers constitute an unacceptable interference in our internal affairs.’

The MEA said that such action, if continued, ‘would have a seriously damaging impact on ties between India and Canada.’

The statement read, “These comments have encouraged gatherings of extremist activities in front of our High Commission and Consulates in Canada that raise issues of safety and security. We expect the Canadian Government to ensure the fullest security of Indian diplomatic personnel and its political leaders to refrain from pronouncements that legitimize extremist activism.”

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had become the first international head of the State earlier this week to express his concerns on the farmers’ protests in India against the controversial Farm Laws. In a video message, Trudeau said that his country will always defend ‘rights of peaceful protest.’ Trudeau’s comments have left the BJP seething as the ruling party said that Canada had no ‘locus standi’ to comment on India’s internal matter.

Analysts say that Trudeau’s comments assumed significance given that a significantly large population of Canada’s ethnic minority hailed from the Indian state of Punjab.

Meanwhile, protesting farmers have called for Bharat Bandh on 8 December, threatening to occupy every single toll booth on highways across India and blocking all roads to Delhi.

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