India-Canada feud: Most are missing the bigger picture

Ashish Shukla
5 min readSep 24, 2023


(This is a reprint from NewsBred)

I believe Hardeep Singh Nijjar was a piece which has been moved on the geopolitical chessboard.

Nijjar was shot dead which has been blamed on India by the Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau.

You of course are aware of the diplomatic shunt-outs between the two countries and how India is hauling Canada over the coals like few Western nations have ever been.

We have heard that another extremist Sukhdool Singh has been shot dead in Winnipeg, Canada and since he too was on the NIA’s list of most wanted, it’s meant to convey a pattern.

And the pattern is that India is ordering extrajudicial killings in other sovereign territories with the examples cited of Paramjit Singh Panjwar, designated Khalistan Commando Force (KCF) chief, in Lahore in May; Harmeet Singh, a Khalistan Liberation Force leader, suffering the same fate on Pakistan soil in 2020; or Avtar Singh Kanda in the United Kingdom who had groomed prominent Khalistani separatist Amritpal Singh.

Now with Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, leader of the banned Khalistani outfit Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), issuing threats to Canadian Hindus asking them to leave Canada, it’s clear that Sikhs are being pitted against the Hindus. The demand for Khalistan is just a ruse — which truth to tell, isn’t what most of the Sikhs want despite the outsized noise by these secessionists.

Khalistan is a convenient noise drummed up around the world by those who don’t like India Rising. It’s not unlike the Muslim bogey which thankfully is now muted by the rollicking affair India lately is having with the Arabs.

Now there is only one force which doesn’t want anyone in the world to grow: the West. It sometimes boots Pakistan’s ISI or at other times the terrorists of own stable. The domestic front is taken care of by the “Deep State” which is sections of establishment (politicians, judges, bureaucracy, media etc) on payroll along with NGOs and Human Rights group.

It’s meant to bully the nationalist government which India presently has; and if that doesn’t work, engineer a storm which hopefully brings a more convenient government in power, like it was done with “nationalist” Imran Khan who had taken on Pakistan army and didn’t hold his tongue against the United States.

It’s logical that the West feels India has lately grown too big for its boots, that its positioning itself as an arbiter between the West and the Global South when the latter are no better than termites in its eyes; and that much as India is needed to check China, it still needs to be shown its place. Don’t you believe that the West isn’t seething at India’s defiance on Ukraine which favours Russia or that G20 Summit Declaration didn’t condemn Russia and reduced Ukraine as a footnote in the document.

So we have the Canadian prime minister swinging wildly in his parliament against India about an assassination which, frankly, happens all the time among all the nations. That’s something which all states have to do from time to time. It still can’t be equated with those who bomb out hundreds in mid-air and are yet acquitted; who provide base to terrorists and keep a nation, oceans apart, in foment.

The best way to understand a massive operation is to follow the money. Who sustains this Khalistani movement across continents, in New Yorks, Londons, Melbournes and Torontos? Surely not the proponents of Khalistan: One can’t be serious that farm incomes or petrol pumps of these Khalistanis are sustaining this global agenda.

How do you think the farmers’ protest in India was sustained for over a year, involving thousands of people? Those who didn’t have penny at home couldn’t have held on for so long costing millions of dollars. We had Trudeau then worrying about the Indian farmers’ well-being, the same prime minister who isn’t bothered now about the safety of lakhs of Canadian-Hindus by call-out from his own land.

I for one don’t get caught in the binary of Trudeau’s hands being forced by the Khalistani elements in his government; or that this farm lobby which is hurt by India’s reduced imports from Canada is calling the shots. This Nijjar issue was too small to be blown into a diplomatic freeze; it could’ve easily been put to extremist elements, and life would’ve been usual.

But Canada didn’t take that route, the trade between us is minimal anyway. This matter couldn’t have got going without a nod from the Five Eyes. It’s typical Good Cop-Bad Cop textbook stuff, where two act tough and two empathic but the end goal is to pin a nation down, more so ahead of the 2024 Indian polls which are so important in a geopolitical context.

It must be said the West are masters in this game.Look at Pakistan who we believed to be a doormat of China. Now this is the same Pakistan which is supplying arms to Ukraine against Russia who are blood brothers of Chinese! It’s betraying China which has sunk billions on the CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor). This Pakistan is sucking up to Washington who has the avowed aim to destroy Russia and China! They first put Imran Khan out in cold and installed a government which would do its bidding. The normal service has resumed: Pakistan once again is a client state of the United States.

The same mechanism is at work to throw Modi out in 2024 general polls. This India-Canada slugfest would turn ugly. Temples are already being burnt, now Hindus would be attacked. The Khalistani bogey would also raise head on Indian streets, the Sikh-Hindu, Hindu-Sikh schism would be the staple of newspapers.

It would all be meant to pin down the Modi government. If India goes meek, the heat would be off. Khalistanis would go on a mute mode. There is that added cost of losing the trust of Global South if India goes on knees.

If India goes frontal, this would worsen. But Modi it seems is determined come-what-may. It would earn him the admiration of Global South which is so, so important for India’s foreign policy.

So, again, don’t get caught in the matrix of India-Canada feud. The game is much bigger. And sorry Mr Jaishankar, the West is really that bad.



Ashish Shukla

Author, International journalist, Publishes as antidote to media lies