India Suspends Visa Services in Canada Till Further Notice

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In a further scaling up of the ongoing diplomatic tensions between India and Canada, India has suspended its visa services in Canada till further notice, according to BLS Visa Application Centre, the application centre for Indian visas in Canada. 

“Due to operational reasons, with effect from 21 September 2023, Indian visa services have been suspended till further notice. Please keep checking BLS website for further updates,” the BLS website flashed referring to an important notice from the Indian mission.

On Wednesday, New Delhi issued an advisory to Indian nationals in Canada, including students, to exercise utmost caution while travelling in the country.

“In view of growing anti-India activities and politically-condoned hate crimes and criminal violence in Canada, all Indian nationals there and those contemplating travel are urged to exercise utmost caution. Recently, threats have particularly targeted Indian diplomats and sections of the Indian community who oppose the anti-India agenda,” it said.

Ties between India and Canada started souring on Monday when Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in a parliament address, alleged that India may have possible links with the assassination of Sikh separatist activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a Canadian citizen, and expelled a senior Indian diplomat.

India, which strongly denied the allegation, also expelled a Canadian diplomat and accused Canada of harboring terrorists and Khalistan supporters. It said that Canada’s inaction against extremists was a long-standing concern.

The Canadian government, on Wednesday, rejected India’s advisory and said Canada is a safe country.

Source : businessline