Is India’s Government ‘Snubbing’ Canadaian PM Justin Trudeau?

Hülya Karahan

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s India trip that began on Saturday has been making the headlines in India for the wrong reasons.

In the past four days of his first India trip as prime minister, Trudeau has travelled to the iconic Taj Mahal, nearly 200km from the capital, New Delhi and Gujarat, home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Mumbai, but no senior government minister has met him so far.

A junior Indian minister greeted the Canadian prime minister when he landed in New Delhi accompanied by his wife and three children.

Modi has broken protocols in the past to receive guests personally, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in January.

But the Indian prime minister, who famously hugs his guests, has not even tweeted welcoming Trudeau in a move being seen as a “snub” to the Canadian leader.

Sections of the Indian media praised Modi for his “firmness” and for being “impressively tough”.

The right-wing ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), however, denies any disrespect to the visiting leader.

Justin Trudeau: I was about Xav’s age when I first visited the Taj Mahal almost 35 years ago… and it’s amazing to be back with him & the family on Day 1 of our trip to India

Justin Trudeau: Today’s announcements mean more than 5,800 new jobs in Canada, and more than $1 billion in contracts and deals. Great news for the Canada-India relationship.

The ties between the people of and Canada are strong – and reflect our shared commitment to pluralism, diversity and democracy.