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India Resumes E-Visa Services to Canadian Nationals

In September, India paused visa services in Canada amid diplomatic row with India over killing of Sikh leader.

India has resumed e-visa services to Canadian nationals, government sources told Anadolu on Wednesday, easing a diplomatic row over the killing of a Sikh leader in British Columbia in June.

The sources, confirming the resumption, did not provide any more details into the issue.

Earlier in October, India began reissuing visas to Canadian nationals for entry, business, medical, and conferences – a month after it said New Delhi was “temporarily unable to process visa applications” in Canada because of “security threats” being faced by its missions in the Northern American nation.

Tensions between the two countries have been rising since the killing of Sikh leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18 in front of a Sikh temple in Canada’s westernmost province of British Columbia.

Nijjar was a vocal supporter of independence for a proposed Khalistani state in the Punjab region of northwestern India.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had said there were “credible allegations” that the Indian government was behind the shooting of Nijjar in British Columbia.

India, which angrily dismissed the allegation as “absurd,” stopped issuing visas to Canadians. Canada, in return, suspended counselor facilities in several Indian cities.

The Indian government has repeatedly said that Canada has not shared any evidence with New Delhi regarding the allegations that “Indian agents” were involved in the killing.

Last month, Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said Canada pulled 41 diplomats from India after New Delhi threatened to strip them of diplomatic immunity. The Indian Foreign Ministry rejected “any attempt to portray the implementation of parity as a violation of international norms.”

On Tuesday, Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar said he discussed the issues between India and Canada with his Australian counterpart Penny Wong, who was in Delhi to attend high level talks.

“As you know, Australia has a good, strong, close relationship with both of us. So I felt it was important that Australia get our perspective on the issue, and you know that from our point of view, the key issue is really the space which has been given to extremism and radicalism in Canada,” he said.

Source : Anadolu Agency