THE World Sikh Organization on Thursday issued an appeal for funds, stating: “We can only continue to protect and promote the interests of Sikh Canadians with your help.
“Please donate so that we can continue to work in building meaningful relationships with journalists and media outlets in Canada, as well as continuing to effectively monitor media stories from across the world.
“It is only with your financial support that we can proactively fight dangerous Indian interference against our people and our beautiful country,” read the email from Jaskaran Singh Sandhu.
Sandhu said: “The Canadian government is seriously concerned about foreign interference in Canada, especially with our upcoming federal election in October.
“Experts agree that foreign interference can take many different shapes and forms, including through media manipulation and interference within diaspora communities like our very own.
“We have been raising red flags over Indian interference in Canadian affairs regularly with the media and government, including in multiple caucus meetings with Members of Parliament and leadership across all party lines.
“We have time and time again seen media manipulation stemming from India which maligns Sikh Canadians. The most infamous examples coming from Prime Minister Trudeau’s trip to India.
“In light of that interference we launched #AskCanadianSikhs, our formal media relations arm of the WSO, over a year ago.
“Just recently two stories have been published where we played an integral role in getting the Sikh message across – that we fear Indian interference in our community affairs, and in the affairs of Canada.
“It is happening, and it is only getting worse.
“The first is a story in the National Post, which covers the questionable speech from former Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, at a pro-India gala, in which he pushed an Indian narrative aimed at interfering with and marginalizing Sikhs in Canada.
“The second story is from the Canadian Press and specifically covers the very real threat of Indian interference in Canadian Sikh affairs and the upcoming elections. The Canadian Press story appears in essentially every major media publication in Canada.
“Finally, you know an issue has hit the mainstream when CP24, one of the most watched 24/7 news channels in the country, includes it in their regular news ticker.”