Canadian Punjabi rapper Shubh has faced backlash after posting a distorted map of India with a seasoned-Khalistan caption. This comes amid strained diplomatic people of the family amongst India and Canada, with Canadian PM Justin Trudeau accusing India of being worried inside the killing of a Khalistan chief.
A flashy black car, .32 bore gun handy, his gang by using his facet and the police on his lower back…those are lyrics from Canada-based completely Punjabi rapper Shubh’s hit ‘We Rollin’ which has notched up 207 million perspectives on YouTube due to the fact its release years in the past. however this week, his cool terrible boy photograph took a beating while cricketers Virat Kohli and KL Rahul all at once stopped following him on X (previously Twitter), his multi-metropolis India tour changed into cancelled and sponsorship withdrawn.
just a few months earlier, Shubh had posted a distorted map of India with the caption ‘Pray for Punjab’ hinting at a pro-Khalistan view.
although he deleted the publish later, the harm had been achieved. Diplomatic relations between India andCanada hit new lows this week after Canadian PM Justin Trudeau accused the Indian government of being worried inside the killing of Khalistan Tiger force chief Hardeep Singh Nijjar. The allegations had been rejected by way of India as ‘absurd’ terming Canada’s response to the Khalistan hassle as inadequate. With the war of phrases deepening, the backlash in opposition to Shubh was simplest to be predicted.
Pop goes Propaganda
pop culture, specifically rap music, has played a enormous part within the unfold of Khalistani propaganda. Rapper Shubh isn’t the most effective one who has pandered to the Khalsa sentiment and glorified violence. different Canada-based singers who command a huge following like Punjabi singer AP Dhillon of ‘Brown Munde’ fame had also shared a similar publish which he later deleted. Jazzy B’s tune ‘Putt Sardar De’ and Sidhu Moosawala’s ‘SYL’ glorifies the militant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and the gangster lifestyle that has grow to be inexorably, often mistakenly, connected to the
Sikh community. Canadian journalist Renu Bakshi explains how “Punjabi boys grow up in a testosterone-fueled surroundings run via an iron-fisted patriarch.” The jump from patriarchy to violence appears to be a short one.
At a time while there was very little traction for the Khalistan movement and the idea of a separate kingdom for Sikhs in India, why is the Canadian diaspora so attracted to it? One purpose is a perceived experience of injustice. Neilesh Bose, professor of South Asian records at the university of Victoria, says that the riding pressure in the back of the concept of Khalistan is a belief that Sikhs were harmed or wronged with the aid of India at various moments, which include 1984, or afterwards, “It is not so much a demand for a separate country however a look for justice that appears now not to have any outlet inside present tactics or options.”
however Bose provides that such feelings are confined to a small minority of the diaspora. “i’d not say the sentiment is significant throughout all sectors of the Sikh population, however as a substitute within a subset of Sikhs in Canada.”
Khalistan also represents an idealised place of birth for immigrants who’ve faced discrimination in Canada. “no matter its multiculturalism and minority rights rhetoric, Canada nevertheless has a extreme hassle of racism, particularly against nonwhite groups
like Sikhs with turbans. kids going through Canadian schools
and societal discrimination look for escape in inward identity,” says Shinder Purewal, professor of political technological know-how on the Kwantlen Polytechnic university in Surrey. He provides that they may be hammered by means of big propaganda about Sikh identification,
specially how it’s far distinct from others. combine this with the glorious imaginative and prescient of a Sikh kingdom supplied to them, a number of them start wondering that they are able to have their very own nation like Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
Harking back to the past.
For Sikhs, Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s reign represents a golden length of sovereignty and self-rule. teachers say that questions about Sikh identification commenced soon after Partition when Sikhs felt that they were given the short end of the stick. Punjab went on to end up the birthplace of the inexperienced Revolution and the breadbasket of the usa however become plagued by means of loss of infrastructure, as well as social and economic troubles. It became this sense of dissatisfaction that militant Bhindranwale tapped into. inside the aftermath of the tumultuous events of 1984 — Operation Bluestar and the anti-Sikh riots — Sikhs felt that justice had eluded them. The 1985 Air India bombing that killed 329 human beings observed but the perpetrators have been never introduced to e book.
both incidents have emerge as fodder for propaganda on social media structures. as an example, videos that hail Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Bhindranwale and urge humans to are seeking for the “pure land” through selecting up hands are being circulated. The movement pix also use visuals of violence from the ‘eighty 4 riots to incite humans.
A Gateway house file ultimate year talked about how US-primarily based Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) leveraged Pakistani intelligence business enterprise ISI’s propaganda machinery on X. “certainly, this changed into not a one-off attempt, however a part of a strategically crafted tactical evolution, for the reason that the same approach become used as an try and sway Punjab elections,” the file says. facts security start-up Innefu’s record also claimed that fake and proxy bills emanating from Pakistan had been used to spread an anti-India narrative relating to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and anti-farm law protests.
A Hudson Institute file says that such diaspora-primarily based efforts are worrisome due to the fact Pakistan’s intelligence company can be helping seasoned-Khalistan agencies financially and organisationally. “Cooperation between Khalistani and Kashmiri organizations has turn out to be increasingly more obvious in North the usa, the United Kingdom, and Europe,” it says. for example, in August 2020, Khalistani and Kashmiri activists staged an indication in ny towards India, and, in September 2019, activists appropriated imagery and slogans from the Black Lives remember movement that sought systemic reform inside the usa. Joint protests of Khalistani and Kashmiri separatists have took place in Washington DC, Houston, Ottawa, London and other ecu capitals. There were Khalistan referendums and calls to assault Indian diplomats and officials that have been stoutly condemned through India.
besides the Pak factor, an ORF record factors out that Khalistanis have sturdy manipulate over some gurudwaras in Canada. As gurudwaras are a fulcrum for the network, be it marriages, religious rituals, social features, or spiritual interests, this offers them a effective say in all network-related subjects in addition to investment for the reason thru donations. money and have an effect on over Sikh votes, the document says, additionally makes them a powerful force politically.