Canadian cabinet ministers have strongly condemned a video released by the pro-Khalistan organization Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), which threatens Hindus of Indian origin and urges them to leave Canada. This response comes two days after the video was initially circulated by the secessionist group.
Dominic LeBlanc, Canada’s Minister of Public Safety, Democratic Institutions, and Intergovernmental Affairs, expressed his concern, emphasizing that all Canadians should feel safe within their communities. He stated on his official social media account, “All Canadians deserve to feel safe in their communities. The circulation of an online hate video targeting Hindu Canadians runs contrary to the values we hold dear as Canadians. There is no place for acts of aggression, hate, intimidation, or incitement of fear.” LeBlanc’s department also issued a similar statement, describing the video as “offensive and hateful.”
Harjit Sajjan, Canada’s Emergency Preparedness Minister, echoed LeBlanc’s sentiments, reaffirming the importance of inclusivity and safety for all Canadians. Sajjan posted on his official social media account, “To Hindu Canadians and Indians from all backgrounds: Anyone who says you do not deserve to be safe & welcomed in your home does not embody the values of freedom and kindness we hold dear as Canadians. Do not let others delegitimize or question your place and love for Canada.”
In response to the video, the organization Canadian Hindus for Harmony called for strict action against those responsible and urged the Canadian government to promptly address the issue. They questioned why the perpetrator was not being charged under hate crime laws.
The legal counsel for SFJ, Gurpatwant Pannun, made controversial statements in a viral video, urging Indo-Hindus to leave Canada and accusing them of supporting the suppression of pro-Khalistan Sikhs. Pannun’s comments also implied that they were promoting violence by celebrating the assassination of SFJ’s principal figure, Hardeep Singh Nijjar, on June 18. It’s worth noting that Pannun has been designated as a terrorist in India.
Another Hindu organization, the Canadian Organization for Hindu Heritage Education, called upon Canadians to sign an e-petition urging the House of Commons to recognize “Hinduphobia” in the Human Rights Code as a term to describe “anti-Hindu” prejudice and discrimination. The petition, known as e-4507, garnered over 12,500 signatures, surpassing the 500-signature threshold required for government consideration.
In response to the video’s viral spread, Hindu Community of Canada called upon Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to denounce the video and take concrete action. They emphasized the importance of upholding the rule of law in Canada. Additionally, they noted that despite several temple desecrations by pro-Khalistan elements in recent times, Canadian law enforcement agencies have yet to make any arrests in connection with these incidents. The organization announced plans to launch a Hinduphobia incident reporting helpline to address concerns and fears within the community.