Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau on Friday with a hug, one day after embarrassed Canadian diplomats had to revoke a party invitation for a man convicted of attempting to kill an Indian politician.
The invitation was the latest blunder in Trudeau’s eight-day visit, which has included everything from criticism of his colourful wardrobe to questions about whether his government is sufficiently critical of Sikh extremists.
Jaspal Atwal, a Canada-based former member of a banned Sikh separatist group, had been invited by a Canadian member of Parliament to a Thursday evening party for Trudeau at Canada’s High Commission in New Delhi.
Atwal was convicted of trying to kill an Indian Cabinet minister during a 1986 visit to Canada. The minister was shot but survived. Atwal was imprisoned and became a businessman after his release.
Canada quickly withdrew the invitation once it was discovered, with Trudeau telling reporters: “Obviously we take this situation extremely seriously. The individual in question never should have received an invitation.”
Earlier in the week, Atwal attended a Mumbai reception at which he was photographed with Trudeau’s wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau.