Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s hoping for constructive relations with India despite Canada alleging agents of the country were involved in the death of a B.C. resident.
“It’s extremely important that all of us continue to engage constructively and seriously with the government of India. India is a growing economic power, an important geopolitical player,” Trudeau told a news conference on Thursday in Montreal.
Earlier this month, Trudeau said Canadian national-security authorities have credible intelligence that “agents of the government of India” carried out the mid-June fatal shooting of Hardeep Singh Nijjar , a prominent Sikh leader in British Columbia.
Trudeau noted that Canada’s Indo-Pacific strategy outlining a new trade and security policy for the region hinges on building closer relations with India.
“At the same time, obviously as a rule-of-law country, we need to emphasize that India needs to work with Canada to ensure that we get the full facts of this matter.”
Also, Trudeau said he expects U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken will raise the Nijjar issue in a meeting Thursday afternoon in Washington with his counterpart from India, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar.
Trudeau said the Americans have been with Canada in speaking to India about the issue, and how important it is for India to be involved in following up on the “credible” allegations about the death of Nijjar.
Meanwhile, the federal government is coping with apparent cyberattacks this week, as a hacker group in India claims it has sowed chaos in Ottawa. Story here from CTV.
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Quebec earmarks more than $1-billion for Northvolt EV battery plant outside Montreal - Quebec Premier François Legault’s government is making one of the biggest bets in its five years of power, pledging $2.9-billion in financing to Swedish battery maker Northvolt AB as the province builds out an electric vehicle battery industry it hopes will be the envy of the world. Story here.
Alberta university returns endowment honouring Ukrainian who fought with Nazis - The University of Alberta is returning endowment funds from the family of a Ukrainian man whose military service was linked to the Nazis. Story here.
Police watchdog to probe shooting of Quebec man suspected of making threats toward Legault, Trudeau - Quebec’s police watchdog is investigating after a member of a provincial police tactical team shot a man suspected of making threats toward Premier Francois Legault and Prime Minster Justin Trudeau. Story here.
B.C. expects ‘enhanced masking’ in health-care settings, Dix says - British Columbia Health Minister Adrian Dix says an announcement is coming Thursday on new rules for the province’s health-care facilities, include masking. Story here.
Minister says ‘co-developed’ First Nations water legislation to be tabled this fall - Indigenous Services Minister Patty Hajdu says she hopes to table legislation this fall that she says is the closest the federal government has come to co-developing law with First Nations. Story here.
Conservative MP asks police, PMO to explain embarrassing invite - but not the former Speaker - The Conservatives are pushing for a House of Commons committee to summon federal police agencies and someone from the Prime Minister’s Office to explain the “international embarrassment” caused when Parliament applauded a man who fought with a Nazi unit in Ukraine in the Second World War. Story here from CTV.
Newfoundland asks oil sands workers to return home from Alberta with the lure of new jobs - Alberta and Newfoundland are engaging in a game of tug of war with oil sands workers as both energy-producing provinces attempt to lure Atlantic Canadians in a tight labour market. Story here,
Justice minister says Liberal bail-reform bill will work, but says he can’t say how - Federal Justice Minister Arif Virani says he is confident the Liberals’ bail-reform package will have an impact and make the country safer, but he says he cannot measure what exactly that will be. Story here.
Top general ‘overstepped’ with flirtatious emails, invited subordinate to hotel room, witness says - Lieutenant-General Steven Whelan sent e-mails commenting on a subordinate’s anatomy and invited her to his hotel room, and she believes her refusal led him to retaliate at her performance evaluation, according to her testimony at his court martial. Story here.
Former Doug Ford aide Amin Massoudi paid $237,000 by PC caucus services - A former top adviser to Premier Doug Ford, who joined a trip to Las Vegas that is now under scrutiny, left his government post in 2022, but has since kept working for the Progressive Conservative caucus on a $237,000 contract that only ended this month. Story here.
Ex-MPP Randy Hillier’s request to move trial away from Ottawa denied - A judge has denied a second request by former Ontario MPP Randy Hillier, who is facing charges related to his participation in the “Freedom Convoy” protest, to move his jury trial away from Ottawa. Story here.
Ottawa halts housing funding to Metro Vancouver over increased development fees - Metro Vancouver is scrambling to explain its plan for increased development fees, after Ottawa abruptly paused a plan to give millions of dollars to Vancouver-area cities for affordable housing because Housing Minister Sean Fraser said he was concerned about the fees’ impact. Story here.
Election speculation in New Brunswick grows louder - New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs is dangling the prospect that he could send the province to the polls this fall, a year ahead of schedule, citing the risk of “instability and stagnation” if the legislature resumes sitting next month. Story here.
THIS AND THAT
Today in the Commons - Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, Sept. 28, accessible here.
Deputy Prime Minister’s Day - Private meetings in Toronto.
Ministers on the Road -Federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault, in Belleville, Ont., made an announcement on restoring water quality and the health of ecosystems in the Bay of Quinte and the Great Lakes. International Trade Minister Mary Ng, in Toronto, delivered remarks on trade and federal support for women entrepreneurs at this year’s Elevate Festival.
In Ottawa - Employment Minister Randy Boissonnault appeared before the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology to discuss Canada’s temporary and migrant labour force. Governor-General Mary Simon, ahead of Saturday’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, participated in Gidinawendimin – We Are All Related, a youth‑focused event, featuring Survivors, Knowledge Keepers, and Indigenous music and culture. She also delivered a speech.
Speaker May? - Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says she will allow her name to stand as a candidate for Speaker so she can deliver a speech to MPs. expressing her concerns about the state of the Commons. The position is open with this week’s resignation of Anthony Rota. May said in a Thursday interview she does not expect to win, nor really want to win. “If I were to win, I would have to stop being leader of the Green Party and, between the two, I think my greater sense of dedication is to climate action and things I can do as leader of the Green Party that I couldn’t as Speaker,” she said. However, May wants to make the most of the speech allowed to candidates. Asked why she would be a good Speaker, May said she is genuinely fond of her colleagues and that she would empower MPs to ask the questions they want as opposed to being guided by the party whips, who ensure discipline. May is in her Vancouver Island riding recovering from a stroke, and not allowed to fly until she has an MRI, a procedure scheduled for November. She said she plans to take the train to Ottawa in coming weeks to participate in House matters.
PRIME MINISTER'S DAY
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Montreal, held private meetings, and made an announcement with Quebec Premier François Legault. Later, Trudeau was scheduled to participate in a roundtable discussion with leaders from the artificial intelligence sector followed by a meeting with innovators in artificial intelligence.
Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet held a news conference on Parliament Hill and was scheduled to attend Question Period.
Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre attended Question Period.
Green Party Leader Elizabeth May was in her Vancouver-Island riding, participating virtually in the Commons sitting.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, in Vancouver, spoke to a conference of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada’s Young Workers Conference.
On Thursday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, Globe investigative reporter Tavia Grant explains how a Canada-based Dollarama executive has caused a controversy for trying to expand his luxury home on the mountainside in Saint Luca. The area - twin volcanic peaks called the Pitons - is a UNESCO World Heritage site featured on postcards, literature, and even the Saint Lucian flag. The Decibel is here.
Nearly two-thirds of Albertans oppose government’s pause on renewable energy approvals: poll - A poll released Thursday suggests nearly two-thirds of Albertans oppose the provincial government’s moratorium on approvals for new renewable energy projects. Story here.
The Globe and Mail Editorial Board on how a bilingualism rule squeezes selection of a new Supreme Court justice: That the Supreme Court can conduct its business in both official languages is not in question. Nor is the importance of bilingualism among the valuable skills for judges to be considered for the top court. But concerns about making it a requirement have been borne out in recent years and especially with the latest opening. The change has clearly limited the field of jurists Ottawa was able to consider for one of the most important jobs in the country.
Andrew Coyne (The Globe and Mail) on Alberta’s mad plan to break up the CPP, and why it (deliberately) misses the point: “Danielle Smith and her advisers have made no secret of their admiration for Quebec nationalists – the same unworkable policies, the same impossible demands, above all the same brazen cheek – so it is not surprising to see the latest expression of it: a proposal for Alberta to pull out of the Canada Pension Plan, which it is legally entitled to do, and take 53 per cent of the plan’s assets with it, which it most certainly isn’t. Others have already patiently explained why this is not going to happen.”
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on how, as Canada’s fertility rate declines, the debate over how to respond will get ugly: “Declining fertility is stoking the most divisive debates of our time. Should we encourage increased fertility through subsidized childcare and other supports? Should we try to bribe women to have more children through baby bonuses? Should we restrict a woman’s right to abortion and contraception? Should we replace the missing babies through immigration? Should we move away from a growth-based economic model? The arguments are getting louder. It will not be pretty.”
Caroline Maynard (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how Canada’s access-to-information law has entered a painful midlife crisis: “In Canada, freedom of information laws exist to empower citizens and to promote an open and democratic society. By enabling Canadians to submit requests for records held by government institutions, these laws facilitate an open discussion of governmental operations, and help to promote transparency and accountability. The Access to Information Act – the law guaranteeing this quasi-constitutional right of access at the federal level – turned 40 this past July. But middle age is proving to be unkind.”