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Saturday,  April 13, 2024 3:03 AM 

India suspends visa services for Canadian citizens amid diplomatic row

  • Other
  •   09-25-2023  11:35 am
  •   Pax Global Media

India suspends visa services for Canadian citizens amid diplomatic row
Taj Mahal in Agra, India. (Julian Yu/Unsplash)
Pax Global Media

India announced last Thursday (Sept. 21) it was immediately suspending visa services for Canadian citizens.

The decision came amid a diplomatic row that started when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said there were “credible allegations” that India was involved in the assassination of Sikh independence activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

Nijjar, who had been wanted by India for years, was gunned down in June outside his gurdwara in Surrey.

Ottawa also expelled an Indian diplomat, a move that was then followed by New Delhi doing the same to a Canadian representative.

The south Asian country then issued a travel advisory that warned against violence against Indian nationals in Canada.

The blow up of relations between the two countries came as new Statistics Canada data was released Friday, showing a 100 per cent growth year-over-year in travel from India to Canada.

Last July, the number of trips taken from India to Canada was 28,000. During the same month this year, it reached 61,000. In June, the number of trips was even higher, at 64,000.

The halt in issuing visas has caused considerable hardship among members of India’s diaspora in Canada, as India does not allow dual citizenship.

Many Canadians of Indian origin, however, are eligible for an Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) card, meaning they don’t have to apply for a new visa before each trip they take.

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