Majority of Sikhs in Canada don't want Separate Nation: Ex-Canadian Cabinet Minister Herb Dhaliwal

Rozana Spokesman

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Demand for Khalistan is made by very small & minor groups who have their own agenda: Herb Dhaliwal

Herb Dhaliwal

TORONTO: Indian-origin former Canadian cabinet minister Herb Dhaliwal said that majority of Sikhs in Canada don't want a separate country. Herb Dhaliwal issued the statement during an an interview with a private media organisation. In response to a question about the uproar over Khalistan supporter Amritpal Singh in the Government of India and especially in the Canadian media, the former minister said, "The demand for Khalistan is made by very small and minor groups who have their own agenda."

Dhaliwal, who was the Minister of National Merchandise, Fisheries and Oceans and Minister of Natural Resources between 1997 and 2003, said, “Earlier, I have said that instead of Khalistan, there should be a clear demand to punish the culprits behind the 1984 riots. I raised this issue with former Prime Ministers IK Gujral, Manmohan Singh and Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The wounds of 1984 riots are still not healed. People want answers."

Reacting to incidents such as the Indian High Commission in Ottawa canceling its event last week in response to rumors of the arrest of fugitive Amritpal Singh, Dhaliwal said that these flags "certainly do not reflect the voice of the majority".

Talking about the large influx of Indian students, especially Punjabis, into Canada, the former cabinet minister said, “The youth are moving to Canada, Australia, UK, USA and other places as there are very few job opportunities in Punjab."

Dhaliwal said, “Young people born and brought up in Canada prefer to visit Machu Picchu, Mexico and European countries rather than go to the 'land of their ancestors'. They cite traffic congestion and poor sanitary conditions for not agreeing to travel to India."