Posted on / by Saikiran Kannan / in Short / 1 comment

India’s Brown Skin and Double Standards

Trudeau’s allegations spark diplomatic firestorm – unraveling the complex web of bias, espionage, and media manipulation

Western media outlets have come under fire in recent years for their perceived bias against India, and the allegations made by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have brought this issue to the forefront once more. His claim that “agents” of the Indian government were involved in the killing of Sikh activist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada sparked outrage and strained India-Canada relations. Is this, however, yet another example of Western media bias against India, or is there more to the story?

It is obvious. India is not a white country. India may consider itself a Western ally. However, India is still a brown-skinned country that will be cajoled and spoiled by Western nations to keep a check on China, which Westerners regard as a yellow-skinned country.

India may have broken into the “elite group” in the space exploration race, but it will take much more to enter the shadowy “elite spy” group that can incite conflict, kidnap personalities, and assassinate people at will in foreign lands. Not only that, but their armies can raise suspicions, illegally enter countries, displace political leaders, or even incite riots to get them killed.

The CIA famously targeted Fidel Castro on numerous occasions. In 1960, the United States dispatched a scientist to kill Congo’s first prime minister, Patrice Lumumba (who was said to be close to Russia), with a lethal virus; however, this became unnecessary when he was removed from office by other means in 1960. 

The CIA assisted in the overthrow of Chile’s president, Salvador Allende, who was deemed too left-wing and died on the day of the coup. We will not even lament the United States’ Soviet war, the creation of Osama Bin Laden, its wars in the Middle East, or the operation it carried out in Abbottabad, Pakistan to kill its creation.

The Mossad, the CIA’s close ally, has its fair share of successful hit lists. In the early 1960s, Mossad was famously accused of kidnapping and killing a West German rocket scientist working for Egypt’s missile program. Israel is also accused of assassinating Iran’s top nuclear scientists.

Since the early 1960s, Israel’s exploits against Palestine have been a well-documented pogrom. One of its most famous (or contentious) operations was the retaliation killings following the 1972 Munich Olympic Massacre.

The most common factor in the CIA and Mossad killings (or operations) has been that they have been ruthless and have mostly had the support of their Western allies regardless of the consequences.

While the aforementioned details have been discussed for decades, the Western media is already attempting to cover up the Western world’s extra-judicial, extra-territorial killings by providing a different kind of justification.

The author states that “in both those cases, the U.S. government argued that Bin Laden and Soleimani posed an imminent threat and that the killings were defensive and, therefore, justified under international law.”

Yes, Western nations’ lives and peace of mind justify killing people in other countries. However, valid concerns expressed by India to Canada, as well as uncorroborated allegations of India’s role in the death of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, necessitate an immediate editorial, as well as calls for the Western world to question and condemn India.

If India went after the Khalistanis in Canada, it had to have a reason. However, according to the Western world, it is perfectly fine to cultivate terrorists or radicals who want to cause trouble in a foreign country, but it is not acceptable for the foreign country to surgically remove the radical elements.

What’s more, the United States, a supposed ally of India, may have been behind the spying on Indian diplomats that resulted in the alleged incriminating evidence that Canada possesses.

Canada has yet to provide public evidence to back up Trudeau’s allegations, and Canada’s United Nations ambassador, Bob Rae, has indicated that this may take some time.

“This is very early days,” Rae said Thursday, adding that while facts will emerge, they must “come out in the course of the pursuit of justice.”

“That’s what we call the rule of law here in Canada,” he explained.

This begs the question of why, or under what pressure, Justin Trudeau was pushed to make an explosive statement in the House of Commons before the investigations were completed and the shreds of evidence were presented. Wait, there’s an answer to this as well.

According to the CBC Canada, Trudeau went public with the India allegations because they were going to be reported in the media. Harjit Sajjan, Trudeau’s minister, made this statement.

The investigation into Nijjar’s death is still ongoing, according to Minister Harjit Sajjan, the Liberal MP for Vancouver South, but Trudeau wanted to ensure Canadians had “the accurate information” about the story before it made headlines.

Will the US continue to consider coercing Canada to let India off the hook? It all depends on how badly the US needs India in the immediate future.

Because, despite the Jamal Khashoggi incident, the US let Saudi Arabia off the hook. Not to mention the hundreds of human rights violations that have occurred in the Middle East. The Petro-dollars and the power countries like Saudi Arabia wield in the region are vital for America’s interests.

Has R&AW made the Five Eyes alliance feel jittery?

One might wonder how the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia feel about this. It is critical to highlight these three Western nations, aside from Canada, because the R&AW may have a long list of notable personalities in these countries, which may cause them to put a stop to the R&AW’s plans to fly into the Western world and “assassinate” people, as the CIA and the Mossad have done in the past.

The Western media is already up to its old tricks.

According to the Financial Times, ” The allegations over the death of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, if corroborated by evidence, would put the world’s largest democracy in the company of governments that have carried out assassinations on foreign soil — including the recent likes of Russia and Saudi Arabia.”

Do we take it seriously that only Russia, Saudi Arabia, and now India have killed or attempted to kill people on foreign soil? The FT also brings up the Modi government’s religious branding, which is irrelevant to the current context. 

“The allegations will fuel a febrile domestic political environment in India months ahead of a general election, where Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata party will seek a third term.”

According to the Financial Times, Canadian Sikhs “hailed” Justin Trudeau for “vocalizing” their cause against India. I don’t think India would be concerned if the Khalistan movement was limited to the United Kingdom and Canada. However, given the number of concerns shared by India with many of these countries about the growing Khalistani extremism that influences events in India, all this whitewashing makes no sense other than to give the Khalistan movement the victim card.

One of the paragraphs in the FT piece even describes Nijjar as a “plumber” who would “lay out chairs for worshippers at the Gurudwara” and one who would “arrange accommodation for students arriving from India”. While it may or may not have been part of his Canadian lifestyle, the circumstances under which he escaped to Canada, and the notoriety of his connections paint a different picture.

While this article was being published, images of Hardeep Singh Nijjar wielding an AK Rifle (Avtomat Kalashnikova) in Pakistan and sharing space with Jagtar Singh Tara, an accused in the assassination of former Punjab CM Beant Singh surfaced online.

If the Khalistan movement was truly set up to serve the best interests of Indian Sikhs, we would see massive local support in India, or at the very least in the state of Punjab (India), where Sikhs are the majority.

Of course, the article makes one thing clear: Justin is pandering to his voting demographic, with Canadian elections looming large on the back of his underwhelming performance this term.

According to the Angus Reid Institute, Trudeau has a 33 percent approval rating and a 63 percent disapproval rating. Trudeau is now contending with the rising popularity of Conservative Party leader Pierre Poilievre, who could lead his party to victory in the upcoming elections. His ratings are at their lowest point since July 2019, when they were just above 30%.

The key metric to consider is that his ratings are the lowest among Canadian males. Those aged 18-34 are the next group to give him lower ratings. What is important to note is that his ratings are still relatively higher in provinces like Ontario and British Columbia which have the largest Sikh populations in Canada.

The Western Media’s double standards:

Justin Trudeau’s statement alleging Indian involvement in Nijjar’s killing has been met with strong denials from the Indian government, which dismissed the claims as “absurd.” This exchange has added fuel to the ongoing debate about the portrayal of India in Western media.

To understand this issue, it’s essential to acknowledge that accusations of bias against India in Western media are not new. Often, Western media outlets have been quick to criticize India, particularly when sensitive issues such as terrorism or separatist movements are involved. In this case, Nijjar’s association with a banned group seeking an independent “Khalistan” state in India’s northern Punjab province adds another layer of complexity to the story.

Critics argue that Western media’s portrayal of India tends to be one-sided, focusing on negative aspects while downplaying its achievements and complexities. India is a vast and diverse country with a myriad of social, political, and economic challenges. Inaccurate or biased reporting can oversimplify these complexities and perpetuate stereotypes.

Balancing accurate reporting with responsible journalism is crucial. Accusations against any country should be based on concrete evidence, and governments should be allowed to respond adequately. In the case of India, allegations should not be treated as facts until proven otherwise.

It’s also important to consider the broader geopolitical context. India is a rising global power, and its relations with Western countries, especially in the face of an assertive China, are increasingly crucial. Accusations against India should be handled with care to prevent unnecessary strain on diplomatic ties.

The thoughts and opinions expressed in this are those of the author and not necessarily WeThePress.


  • Saikiran Kannan

    Saikiran Kannan is a Data Analytics, Data Privacy, & AI/ML SME, and an Independent Journalist covering conflicts, global affairs, counter terrorism and data stories. He has a Masters in Data Analytics from the Singapore Management University and is a Harvard Business Advisory Council member.


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