OTTAWA — A Toronto-based Sikh advocacy organization is suing the Indian government for $2.5 million following Indian-media stories alleging Canadian Sikhs are behind a new campaign of violence in the state of Punjab.
Lawyers for Sikhs for Justice filed the defamation suit in Ontario Superior Court on July 8.
It describes three specific news stories in the Times of India, India Today TV and the Business Standard that say Sikhs for Justice is working with Pakistan’s intelligence agency to promote violence and revive militancy in the state of Punjab.
Jatinder Singh Grewal, the international policy director for Sikhs for Justice, says unnamed Indian government sources are behind the false information in the articles.
Sikhs for Justice is part of a campaign to hold a global referendum next year to gauge the support of Sikhs around the world for creating an independent Sikh state known as Khalistan.
Grewal says there are fears these same tactics will be employed by the Indian government to attempt to sway Indo-Canadian voters against candidates in the upcoming Canadian election whom India views as favourable to Khalistan.