A media report indicates that following India’s request for Canada to recall at least 41 diplomats from New Delhi by October 10 to achieve diplomatic staff parity between the two countries, Ottawa has evacuated its diplomatic personnel from its High Commission in India and relocated them to Southeast Asia.
Canada’s 62 diplomats were working in its High Commission in India before the evacuation.
The CTV report stated that the majority of its diplomatic staff have been evacuated from India and shifted to either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia). However, there was no official word on the evacuation of the diplomats from New Delhi.
The media report came days after Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly made claims on Tuesday (Oct 3) that the government was diplomatically engaged with India over the topic of staff reduction.
“We are in contact with the government of India. We take Canadian diplomats’ safety very seriously, and we will continue to engage privately because we think that diplomatic conversations are best when they remain private,” Jolie had stated.
In the wake of deteriorating bilateral ties, Canada was asked by India to withdraw their 41 diplomats from New Delhi by October 10 and added that if they failed to comply with the given deadline, the officials would lose their diplomatic immunity.
India seeks parity in diplomatic presence
Meanwhile, India’s External Affairs Ministry on Thursday (Oct 5) said that they have sought a parity in diplomatic presence.
The diplomatic relations between India and Canada hit an all-time low last month after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau alleged the involvement of Indian intelligence agents involved in the murder of Sikh pro-Khalistan hardliner Hardeep Singh Nijjar. After the allegations of Trudeau, the countries expelled each other’s diplomats. The allegations of Canada were also termed by India as “politically driven”.