Canadian panel report says NSA Doval ‘did not respond’ to NSIA mails about Atwal

Varinder Singh
Tribune News Service
Jalandhar, December 6

The raging controversy over Canadian-Indian Jaspal Atwal’s Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s February India visit has taken a new turn with the findings of the Canadian National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians indicating that the PM’s then National Seucurity and Intelligence Adviser (NSIA) had shot two emails to India’s National Security Adviser Ajit  Doval about Atwal, but did not get any response from the NSA chief.

Jaspal Atwal was convicted of attempted murder of former Punjab minister Malkiat Singh Sidhu during the latter’s visit to Vancouver. He was also said to have been associated with some radical Sikh organisations active in Canada. Jaspal Atwal had sparked a controversy after he was seen attending an official event hosted by the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi in February and was dubbed as a “potent security risk” to the PM, his delegation and his family in the findings of the Canadian National Security and Intelligence Committee comprising Senators and MPs.

Doval, the report suggested, had accompanied Trudueau during his week-long Indian trip which had taken off on February 17.

The then NSIA chief Daniel Jean, the report said, had inquired via e-mail whether he and Doval could meet during the event and had also left his phone numbers, but did not got any response from the NSA. Another mail of the NSIA chief on February 22, the report suggested, had enquired about Atwal’s background who was not a part of Canada’s official delegation. Again, the report said, Doval had not responded.

It was also suggested by senior Canadian officials after Trudeau’s India visit that certain media reports were ‘exaggerating’ information about Atwal at the behest of a section of Indian intelligence set-up saying Atwal was already removed from Indian blacklist and the motive could be to embarrass the visiting Canadian PM for having a soft stance towards radical Sikhs based in Canada.