- On Thursday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met India's Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar in Washington, DC, amid the fallout of Canada's accusation of potential Indian involvement in the assassination of Sikh leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar.1
- Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had claimed that there were 'credible allegations' that New Delhi was involved in the death of Nijjar — an advocate for establishing the independent state of Khalistan — in Vancouver. India has denied Canada's allegations.2
- Though India's foreign ministry previously described the allegations as 'absurd' and 'motivated,' the India-Canada rift over Nijjar's murder wasn't mentioned in the State Department's statement of the talks between Jaishankar and Blinken.3
- The two diplomats discussed multiple issues, 'including key outcomes of India's G20 presidency, and the creation of India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor and its potential to generate transparent, sustainable, and high-standard infrastructure investments.'4
- While the controversial matter wasn't reported to have been discussed in the department's statement, a US official — who spoke anonymously – claimed that Blinken urged India to cooperate with the Canadian probe.5
- This comes after Trudeau, who is reportedly attempting to push India into cooperating with the investigation, said he was confident that Blinken would raise the contentious issue with Jaishankar.6
- Narrative A, as provided by The globe and mail. It's difficult to say what's more shocking: India's alleged involvement in a murder on foreign soil or how Trudeau has approached the issue. Canada has been caught off guard by a lack of vocal support from its allies, especially America, at a time when the global order desperately needs India on its side. Unfortunately for Canada, the dynamics of the new Cold War against China and Russia means that its issues with India aren't worth public confrontation.
- Narrative B, as provided by The hindu. The only way out of the spiraling decline in relations between India and Canada is for Trudeau's state to either prove or disprove its allegations and for India to cooperate with the subsequent investigations. Unless this occurs, ties between the two countries will continue to free fall – creating an incredibly difficult position for businesses, students, and tourism at a time when international unity is paramount.