OTTAWA — Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says future reports on terrorist threats to Canada will not refer to Sikh extremism and instead use “extremists who support violent means to establish an independent state within India.”
Goodale says the language used in his department’s 2018 terror-threat report “unintentionally maligned” certain communities and is not in keeping with Canadian values.
But Goodale isn’t going to change the language in the existing document, which drew ire from Canada’s Sikh community, nor has he provided public evidence backing up the decision to include Sikh extremism in the annual report for the first time.
Balpreet Singh Boparai, the lawyer for the World Sikh Organization in Canada, says admitting the language was wrong and fixing it in the next report is a small step forward, but questioned why the existing report wouldn’t be revised.
He also said Goodale is missing the wider concern that the government has provided no evidence of extremist threats among any Canadians who want to have an independent Sikh state within India, known as Khalistan.
The House of Commons public-safety committee voted this week to summon Goodale to appear sometime before the end of June to discuss the concerns about the report.
The Canadian Press