TORONTO/LONDON: More than 75,000 Canadian Sikhs participated in Khalistan Referendum Phase II in Mississauga and voted in favor of the separation of Punjab from India to establish an independent Sikh country, defying the administration of Narendra Modi and intense opposition from Canadian Hindutva organizations.
Sikh men and women from the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) queued up at 6 am to cast their votes at the Paul Coffee Arena, Mississauga, a venue owned and run by the Canadian Government, while voting began at 9 am under the supervision of the Punjab Referendum Commission (PRC).
A small group of Canadian Hindus who held Hindutva emblems and shouted that they would turn India into a “Hindu Country” under Modi’s leadership staged a counter-protest in response to the Khalistan Referendum vote on November 6.
Sikhs for Justice (SJF) General Counsel Gurpatwant Singh Pannun declared that “today Canadian democracy prevailed and Modi’s fascism lost because Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Government stood with the Sikhs’ right to freedom of speech in the face of great pressure from all Indian sectors.”
The New York-based attorney stated: “After 110,000 votes on September 18 voting, 75,000 plus Canadian Sikhs once again demonstrated their will to liberate Punjab from Indian rule and construct Khalistan in keeping with desires of thousands of Sikh martyrs who have sacrificed their lives for the cause.”
After more than 110,000 Canadian Sikhs took part in the first phase of the Khalistan Referendum on September 18, 2022, and numerous
After the election on September 18, the pro-Khalistan organization Sikhs for Justice, which is leading the campaign for the Khalistan Referendum to split Punjab from India and recognize it as a distinct country for Sikhs, began making preparations for the second phase of the referendum.
India and Canada have been at war since the voting on September 18th. The travel warning was released by the Justin Trudeau administration precisely four days after India’s harsh travel warning on September 23 for its students who were either already in Canada or who were planning to visit, warning them that Canada had turned into a hotbed of pro-Khalistan and anti-Indian activity.
In an unusual action, Canada warned its people from traveling to any locations in the Pakistan-bordering states of Gujarat, Punjab, and Rajasthan owing to the “presence of landmines” and “unpredictable security situation”.
Arindam Bagchi, a spokesperson for the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, said that India had expressed severe concerns to Canada over the Khalistan Referendum vote on September 18 in Brampton.
The Khalistan Referendum held by the SJF was referred to as a “farcical exercise” by India’s External Affairs Ministry, which also stated that India had strongly opposed “politically driven exercises by extreme forces” being permitted to take place in a friendly nation like Canada.
After Canada informed India that the Canadian government would not interfere with any peaceful or legal activities by Canadian Sikhs, India grew incensed.