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Watch: Pro-Khalistanis wrap Indian flag around ball, kick it day after stomping on Modi's cutouts in Toronto

In Toronto, Khalistani demonstrators reportedly burnt the Indian flag and stomped on cardboard cutouts of PM Narendra Modi with their shoes.
Last Updated : 27 September 2023, 11:26 IST
Last Updated : 27 September 2023, 11:26 IST

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Amid rising tensions between India and Canada after the latter's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau accused the Narendra Modi government of being involved in Khalistani separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar's killing, a video has emerged of Khalistani supporters openly disrespecting the Indian flag.

In the video, several individuals can be seen with Khalistan flags unfurled. They kick a football with the Tricolour wrapped around it.

In Toronto, demonstrators burnt the Indian flag and stomped on cardboard cutouts of PM Narendra Modi with shoes, Mint reported.

In India, the The Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971 states that "Whoever in any public place or in any other place within public view burns, mutilates, defaces, difiles, disfigures, destroys, tramples upon or [otherwise shows disrespect to or brings] into contempt (whether by words, either spoken or written, or by acts) the Indian National Flag or the Constitution of India or any part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both".

This is not the first instance of the Indian flag being disrespected abroad. Khalistani separatists have previously disrespected the Tricolour while protesting outside Indian diplomatic missions in Vancouver, Ottawa, and Toronto.

After Trudeau made the accusations, relations between the two nations reached their lowest point, with neither backing down. While Trudeau has said there is 'credible' evidence of India's involvement, EAM S Jaishankar recently commented that if Canada has some proof, India would be willing to listen, and asserted that a clandestine operation such as one alleged, is not India's policy.

While barbs are being traded, the world's largest Sikh community outside India has come into the spotlight. Even as Western countries like the US - which has urged India to comply with the probe - and the UK decide on how to walk the diplomatic fine line, some Canadian Sikhs have taken to protesting against the Indian government.

"We are really thankful to Justin Trudeau... We want no stone left unturned to get to the bottom of this cowardly act", Reuters reported one protestor saying.

The current standoff between India and Canada has seen diplomats from both sides being expelled and India temporarily suspending visas for Canadians. India also issued a travel advisory warning citizens about 'anti-India activities' in Canada.

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Published 27 September 2023, 11:26 IST

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