Jalandhar, June 8
Students staring at deportation and protesting on the roads in Canada have got a reprieve with a committee of the House of Commons passing a motion to initiate discussions on temporarily suspending the process until witnesses testified before it.
Future of 700 students at stake
- About 700 students, mostly from Punjab, staring at deportation
- Their admission letters to Canadian institutions found to be fake
- Fake documents issued by unscrupulous travel agents in Punjab
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau said rather than punishing the students, his government would penalise those behind the fraud. He assured the Parliament that the students would be given an opportunity to present their side. “The government remains committed to supporting the students… we will carefully evaluate each case,” he said.
About 700 students, mostly from Punjab, have been protesting deportation after their admission letters to educational institutions in Canada were found to be fake. The issue came to light after they applied for permanent residency in March. The students have been staging protests on the Airport Road of Mississauga, outside the head office of the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA).
Most of the affected students arrived in Canada between 2017 and 2019. The CBSA sent notices to students in 2021 and also later when the offer letters for Canadian institutions were found to be “fake”. The fake documents were issued by unscrupulous travel agents in Punjab.
Jagmeet Singh, leader of the New Democratic Party (NDP), visited the protest site to meet the students and urged Trudeau to halt the deportations.
Balbir Singh, a student leading the protests, said the motion received unanimous support with the voting resulting in 11-0 majority in favour of the protesters. He said the committee’s study would provide a platform to government officials to respond and be held accountable for the lapses in the system that allowed such exploitation to occur.
Punjab NRI Affairs Minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal said the government would provide free legal help to the students.
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