BRITISH Sikh members of Parliament Preet Kaur Gill and Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi have reacted to “concerning” reports emanating from Canada, after prime minister Justin Trudeau alleged Indian involvement in the murder of a Sikh separatist leader in the country.
The opposition Labour MPs, who represent heavily Sikh constituencies in England, took to social media on Tuesday (19) to claim they had been contacted by their constituents about allegations by Trudeau in the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, 45, the chief of the banned Khalistan Tiger Force.
They said they are raising their concerns directly with the government ministers.
“Trudeau’s statement on Hardeep Singh Nijjar’s murder is deeply concerning,” tweeted Gill, who is the MP for Birmingham Edgbaston in the West Midlands region of England.
“It is important that Canada’s investigation runs its course, and those responsible see justice. I want to reassure my constituents that I and my colleagues are raising our concerns with ministers,” she said.
Dhesi, MP for Slough in south-east England, also tweeted to claim many British Sikhs have been in contact with him over the issue.
“Concerning reports coming from Canada. Many Sikhs from Slough and beyond have contacted me; anxious, angry or fearful. Given that Canadian prime minister Trudeau stated they’ve been working with close allies, we’re in touch with the UK government to ensure justice is delivered,” he said.
It follows Trudeau’s statement in the country’s Parliament on Monday (18) that the authorities are “actively pursuing credible allegations” related to Indian government involvement in the murder of Nijjar, a designated terrorist, in British Columbia in June.
India has strongly rejected Trudeau’s claims as “absurd and motivated” and dismissed a senior Canadian diplomat in a reciprocal move.
A UK government spokesperson said Britain is in close touch with the Canadian authorities over the “serious allegations” but declined to comment further.
Prime minister Rishi Sunak’s spokesperson told reporters later that “work on the trade negotiations will continue as before” and that the UK was “not looking to conflate these issues”.