NEW DELHI Sept 24: The Indian government on Friday advised its nationals in Canada to exercise caution citing "incidents of hate crimes, sectarian violence and anti-India activities in Canada."
"In view of the increasing incidences of crimes as described above, Indian nationals and students from India in Canada and those proceeding to Canada for travel/education are advised to exercise due caution and remain vigilant," the MEA said in a statement.
The government has also advised Indian nationals and students from India in Canada to register with the High Commission of India in Ottawa or Consulates General of India in Toronto and Vancouver through their respective websites, or the MADAD portal madad.gov.in.
Registration would enable the High Commission and the Consulates General to better connect with Indian citizens in Canada in the event of any requirement or emergency.
Earlier in the week, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said India raised concerns on the referendum issue.
India has deeply objected that "politically motivated exercises by extremist elements" are allowed to take place in a friendly country like Canada, he said.
"We would term it as farcical exercise. A farcical exercise was held by extremists and radical elements supporting the so-called Khalistan referendum in Canada," Bagchi said.
He said India has taken up the issue with Canadian authorities and they reiterated respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India.
"The matter has been taken up with the Canadian authorities through diplomatic channels. The government of Canada has reiterated that they respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India and they will not recognise the so-called referendum which is taking place in Canada," the MEA spokesperson said.
"However, we find it deeply objectionable that politically motivated exercises by extremist elements are allowed to take place in a friendly country. You all are aware of the history of violence in this regard," he added.
Bagchi said the government of India will continue to press the government of Canada on this matter.