Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who is in India on a week-long visit, on Monday stressed on the need for an independent media, calling it “a must for a successful democracy”. While he admitted to finding the media frustrating at times, he said it was essential to empower and support it, The Indian Express reported.
“The media fulfils an important duty of telling the government what it’s doing wrong,” Trudeau said at an event at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. “An independent media is essential for a successful democracy.”
The Canadian prime minister’s India visit began in Delhi on Saturday. On his agenda is a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday as well as a meeting with businessmen in Mumbai. He will also meet Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday in Amritsar.
At the IIM-Ahmedabad event, Trudeau also spoke about feminism and women’s rights. “If you think men and women should get equal opportunities, you are a feminist, it is that simple,” the Canadian leader said. “Any comments about how a man looks isn’t even an eyelash worth of the systemic discrimination women face. As a man in business and politics, I had lots of advantage. But I didn’t go near the discrimination, sexism, superficiality and judgement that women go through daily.”
On Canada’s relations with India, Trudeau said his country was open to boost immigration and trade. “India-Canada trade has the potential to grow,” he said, adding that he wanted trade deals that benefit both the countries, especially small enterprises, the Business Standard reported.
He also urged countries “to do more to welcome immigrants not because that is the right thing to do, because refugees who flee the persecution in their country for a better life in another are extremely grateful to the country that welcomes them”.