India on Tuesday expressed “anguish” over the recently-passed motion by Canada’s Ontario Assembly describing the 1984 anti-Sikh riots as “genocide”. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley met Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Singh Sajjan on Tuesday in the national Capital and said the motion was “a total exaggeration of facts”, reported PTI.
Jaitley also said the resolution, which had “critical references to India”, would affect the bilateral relations of the two countries, The Times of India reported, quoting unidentified Defence Ministry officials. Jaitley also told Sajjan that India had not expected a move like this from a “fellow liberal democracy”, the report added.
Sajjan defended the Justin Trudeau government and said the motion was a resolution by a private member and the Canadian government and its people do not agree with it.
On April 7, the Ontario Legislative Assembly had passed the motion with 34 Members of Provincial Parliament voting in favour and only five against it. The motion, which was passed by MPP Harinder Malhi, had said the Ontario Assembly should seek to condemn all forms of violence, hatred, prejudice, racism in India and other parts of the world, “including the 1984 genocide perpetrated against the Sikhs throughout India”.
Correction: An earlier version of this story erroneously referred to Harjit Singh Sajjan as the Canadian finance minister.