Jaspal Atwal, sentenced in 1986 in Canada for attempting to assassinate an Indian minister on Vancouver Island, was invited to a reception at the official residence of the High Commission of Canada as part of the Trudeau tour in India. The invitation was canceled after CBC News arrested the Prime Minister’s Office on Wednesday.
This situation is all the more embarrassing for Justin Trudeau as Jaspal Atwal was added to the guest list by a member of his own delegation, Surrey Center Liberal MP Randeep Sarai.
Jaspal Atwal, who was a member of the International Federation of Sikh Youth, a banned terrorist group in Canada and India, was convicted with three other individuals for shooting at former Indian Minister Malkiat Singh Sidhu during an ambush on Vancouver Island.
The man has also been convicted in a car fraud case in the past and charged, but found not guilty, in the investigation into the assault on Ujjal Dosanjh, an opponent of the Sikh separatist movement who was beaten. in 1985, an iron bar.
Mr. Dosanjh later became Premier of British Columbia.
MP Sarai acknowledges his lack of judgment
MP Randeep Sarai later agreed that he had run out of judgment and openly apologized for submitting the name of Jaspal Atwal to the High Commission for inclusion on the guest list of Thursday night.
“I only made it easy [Jaspal Atwal] to attend this event,” said Randeep Sarai on his Twitter account. I apologize without reservation for the role I played in this situation. ”
Trudeau is walking on egg shells.
Visibly embarrassed by this odd, which immediately made the headlines of the major Indian media and newspapers, Justin Trudeau responded by explaining that this man should never have been invited to this event and that he takes the situation very seriously.
The person in question should never have been invited, and as soon as we knew what was happening, the invitation was withdrawn. The Member responsible for inviting this person assumes full responsibility.
Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
Justin Trudeau’s office said in an email to CBC that Jaspal Atwal is not part of the Prime Minister’s official delegation to India and has never been invited to participate.
“We are checking what happened,” said Eleanore Catenaro, a spokeswoman for the Prime Minister’s Office.
“As is the case for international travel, individuals sometimes travel alone to the place of the visit,” Catenaro said.
According to CBC, Jaspal Atwal had not only been invited to the official residence of the High Commission of Canada, he also participated in an official event with the Indian film industry on Tuesday in Mumbai.
On Wednesday, Justin Trudeau and his defense minister, Harjit Sajjan, reaffirmed their rejection of all forms of violence and extremism during a high-profile meeting in Amritsar with the chief minister of Punjab, who publicly supported the last year that several Canadian ministers would be sympathizers of the Sikh separatist movement.
According to the Time of India , Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh handed a list to Prime Minister Trudeau at the meeting, listing the names of nine Sikh activists based in Canada who were suspected of being involved in the financing and the supply of weapons to radical separatist separatist groups in the Punjab.
A dark end of the journey
This incident certainly overshadows the program of the Canadian Prime Minister who has been trying for a week to revive diplomatic and trade relations with India by projecting an image of openness and tolerance.
On Thursday, he visited one of the largest mosques in the country and a Christian church before participating in a cricket game. The Prime Minister also made a speech at the Canada-India Business Summit in New Delhi.
On Friday, Canada’s Prime Minister must be officially received by his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, who has remained very discreet about this trip since the arrival of Justin Trudeau in India last Saturday.