Canadian prime minister spurs criticism, raises eyebrows on India tour

Vastavam web: Canadian and Indian officials scrambled on Thursday to explain how a convicted Sikh extremist was invited to a New Delhi reception for Justin Trudeau, the latest misstep in the Canadian prime minister’s bumpy eight-day trip to India.The tour has been overshadowed by suggestions of a lukewarm reception by the government and a series of photo ops featuring the Trudeau family in coordinated Indian attire that have raised eyebrows in both countries.“The fact that an invitation, which was already extended to Mr. Atwal, has been withdrawn, it basically shows (Canada) have taken into account the concerns which we have,” said Raveesh Kumar, a spokesman for India’s Ministry of External Affairs.

Atwal’s invitation was withdrawn once his links to an organisation banned in India came to light. Trudeau told reporters on Thursday that a Canadian parliamentarian on the trip had taken responsibility for the mistake.The trip, partly aimed at shoring up support for Trudeau’s Liberals among the politically important ethnic vote in key regions, has also been criticized for being light on official government business.

Trudeau on Tuesday cited C$1 billion in deals between Canadian and Indian companies announced in Mumbai, and said the trip was “not just about political ties” but improving business and cultural ties.“FYI we Indians don’t dress like this every day sir, not even in Bollywood,” tweeted Indian politician Omar Abdullah.Earlier this week, Trudeau rejected suggestions that he had been snubbed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.