Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Mélanie Joly, confirmed that 41 Canadian diplomats and their families have left India. This decision came in response to New Delhi’s announcement that it would withdraw diplomatic immunity for Canadian diplomats.
Joly stated that India had formally conveyed its intention to unilaterally remove diplomatic immunities for all but 21 Canadian diplomats and their dependents in Delhi. This move is expected to impact the level of services provided to citizens in both countries, leading to a temporary suspension of all in-person services in Chandigarh, Mumbai, and Bengaluru.
The diplomatic dispute centers on India’s demand for parity in the number of diplomats, with New Delhi asserting that Canada should match the consular strength that India maintains in Canada. Tensions between the two nations escalated following Canada’s accusation that India may have played a role in the murder of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, who was fatally shot by masked gunmen outside a gurdwara in Surrey in June 2023. The fallout highlights the strain in diplomatic relations between Canada and India, with implications for consular services in both countries.