India worried about expansion of pro-Khalistan motion in Canada

22 July, 2022 | Riya Girdhar


According to Indian officials, at least eight such prominent gang leaders are currently present in Canada, and they appear to direct activities from here.

India is keeping a close eye on the pro-Khalistan movement in Canada, which appears to be entering a new phase. The increased linkage with organised criminal gangs operating in Canada and India is of particular concern.

According to Indian officials, at least eight such prominent gang leaders are currently present in Canada and appear to direct activities from here. This link between some Canadian radicals and gangsters provides the former with “foot soldiers” in India, a luxury they did not previously have, according to an official.

While they did not name the gangsters, they did say they had been thoroughly discussed during ongoing discussions between India’s National Investigation Agency and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

More concerning for them is the emerging reality of Canadian gangsters establishing ties with Khalistani groups. Many of them, they claimed, met in Indian jails and joined forces. Because of the large presence of Indo-Canadian gangs in the country, they are then able to direct attacks on targets in India and even Canada.

The targeted killing of Ripudaman Singh Malik in Surrey, British Columbia, has yet to be determined, but it appeared to be a gangland hit. Malik was once accused of being involved in the 1985 bombing of Air India Flight Kanishka, which killed 329 people. He was, however, acquitted of all charges in the case. On July 14, around 9.30 a.m., he was executed near the premises of a business he ran in the town of Surrey in the Metro Vancouver region.

There has been speculation that his death was connected to his change of heart about Khalistan, as well as the letters he wrote this January praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi and asking the community to renounce separatism. The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team of Canada is still looking into the case.

The officials also mentioned the May 29 murder of Punjabi singer and politician Sidhu Moose Wala in Punjab, and how a leader of the Lawrence Bishnoi gang, 28-year-old Satinderjeet Singh alias Goldy Brar, who is currently in Canada, took to social media to claim responsibility for the murder. While Brar is facing numerous criminal charges in Indian courts, none have been tested in Canada.