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Canadian leadership’s comments on farmers protest “ill-informed”: MEA Spokesperson

Official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Anurag Srivastava.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Canadian leadership’s comments on the ongoing agitation by farmers are “ill-formed”, an official of the Ministry of External Affairs said on Tuesday. The Indian response came hours after Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his country has contacted Indian authorities “through multiple means” to express concern about the protesting farmers.

“We have seen some ill-informed comments by Canadian leaders relating to farmers in India. Such comments are unwarranted, especially when pertaining to the internal affairs of a democratic country,” said Official Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava in response to a media query.

Mr Trudeau earlier said that the news about the protest unfolding around Delhi “is concerning”.

“We are all very worried about family and friends... Canada will always be there to defend the rights of peaceful protesters,” he said announcing that Canada has reached out to the Government of India regarding the protests which have drawn support from his vocal coalition partner Jagmeet Singh of New Democratic Party (NDP), which has a strong base among the Indo-Canadian community.

In response, to the Canadian Prime Minister’s comments, Mr Srivastava said, “It is also best that diplomatic conversations are not misrepresented for political purposes.”

Me. Jagmeet Singh is the leader of NDP and a key coalition partner in the Canadian government. He has in the past spoken in support of civil and political rights in India. On Monday, he greeted his supporters on the Gurupurav or birth anniversary of Guru Nanak and said, “Guru Nanak Sahib Ji led a social revolution believing that we are all one and equal today, as millions of farmers march towards India’s capital to oppose privatisation -- they walk with this spirit.”

Several other Indo-Canadian political figures such as Gurratan Singh and Canadian Member of Parliament Jack Harris also expressed concern about the protests in India. Mr. Harris, also from NDP, has described the police action on the farmers as “alarming”.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2021 7:35:49 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/canadian-leaderships-comments-on-farmers-protest-ill-informed-mea-spokesperson/article33221314.ece

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