Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Snubbed In India?

| February 19 , 2018 , 11:02 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is famous for the warm welcome he accords to guests to the nation, often greeting them with a hug at the tarmac when they land in India. Although PM Modi's 'hugplomacy' has been mocked by political opponents in the past, it hasn't stopped him from his warm greetings.

However, the welcome of Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to India in his first trip to the nation, was marked with an absence of PM Modi, and even Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj was absent. Instead, Minister of State for Agriculture Gajendra Singh and Indian Ambassador to Canada Vikas Swarup welcomed PM Trudeau and his family to India when they arrived on Saturday night.

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Canadian PM Trudeau along with his wife and 3 children Xavier, Ella-Grace and Hadrien visited the famous Taj Mahal of Agra on Sunday, but were not met with Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath as Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu had been when he visited the Taj Mahal. Instead, district magistrate Gaurav Dayal and commissioner K Rammohan Rao greeted PM Trudeau and his family.

According to reports, the Canada Prime Minister's perceived support towards pro-Khalistan elements calling for a separate nation to be carved out of India's Punjab state, is likely behind the 'snub' of PM Trudeau. Currently, there are around 1.4 million Indians living in Canada, out of which a considerable percentage are Sikhs. Multiple pro-Khalistan groups are also reportedly planning to hold a 'Punjab Independence Referendum' in 2020.

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The Khalistan radicals have long been a matter of contention between India and Canada, and the trip of PM Justin Trudeau to India, in which he will be conducting a series of meetings with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi aims to improve relations between the two countries.

Author and columnist for Toronto Sun Candice Malcolm in a tweet, expressed support for a united India, on behalf of the people of Canada, regardless of the views of their 'misguided PM Justin Trudeau'.

Although Trudeau is planning to visit Amritsar to see the famous Golden Temple, reportedly Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh would not be meeting with him.