Saturday, 02 Dec, 2023


Sukhdool Singh: Another Sikh leader killed in Canada

International Desk  |
Update: 2023-09-21 15:38:34
Sukhdool Singh: Another Sikh leader killed in Canada

Sukhdool Singh, a Sikh separatist leader, was shot dead by unknown men in Canada’s Winnipeg on Wednesday.

Singh, who had fled to Canada from India’s Punjab in 2017, was shot about 15 times. Sukhdool Singh was from Punjab’s Moga district.

Singh’s killing comes at a time when India-Canada relations are perhaps at an all-time low, after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau alleged in parliament that India had a hand in killing a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil.

All Canadian political parties have stood by their government’s claims in the matter, and said that an investigation should be carried out.

Both Canada and India have expelled one senior diplomat each from the embassy of the other country. India has also issued a travel advisory for Indians planning to travel to Canada.

Who was Hardeep Singh Nijjar?

– Nijjar was born in 1977 in Jalandhar district in India’s northern state of Punjab and moved to Canada in 1997, where he worked as a plumber, according to the Khalistan Extremism Monitor of the New Delhi-based independent Institute for Conflict Management.

– He was initially associated with the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) Sikh separatist group, according to India’s counter-terrorist, National Investigation Agency. New Delhi has listed BKI as a “terrorist organisation” and says it is funded by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) spy agency, a charge Islamabad denies.

– Nijjar later became chief of the militant group Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF) and was “actively involved in operationalising, networking, training and financing” its members, according to a 2020 Indian government statement.

– New Delhi officially categorised him as a “terrorist” in the same statement, saying he was involved in “exhorting seditionary and insurrectionary imputations” and “attempting to create disharmony among different communities” in the country.

– For supporters demanding a so-called independent Sikh state of Khalistan, Nijjar was a prominent leader and a strong voice for the cause.

– He was elected head of the Guru Nanak Sikh Gurudwara, a Sikh place of worship, in Surrey, the Vancouver suburb where he lived. He held that position at the time of his death.

– Hardeep Singh Nijjar was shot dead outside the same gurudwara on the evening of June 18.

– Hundreds of people protested outside the Indian consulate in Vancouver after his murder, alleging foreign hands were involved in his death, local media reported at the time.

Source: ARY News

BDST: 1538 HRS, SEP 21, 2023

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