Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a prominent Sikh separatist leader and Canadian citizen, was a fervent advocate for the establishment of Khalistan, an independent nation that would encompass parts of India’s Punjab State.
Born in the Jalandhar district of Punjab, India, Nijjar had immigrated to Canada in the mid-1990s, seeking refuge during a period when the Indian government intensified its crackdown on Sikh activists. In Canada, he built a life for himself, marrying and becoming a father of two sons. He worked as a plumber and assumed the role of President of the Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara, a prominent temple in Surrey, in 2020.
At the time of his death, Hardeep Singh Nijjar was 45 years old.
Nijjar’s family included his wife and two sons. Tragically, his death left his family in shock and grief, as he had even called home just moments before the fatal incident to get dinner ready.
In June, two masked assailants killed Hardeep Singh Nijjar in front of a Sikh temple in Surrey, British Columbia, a city on the border with Washington. This act of violence marked the tragic end of a life characterized by advocacy for Sikh causes and the contentious pursuit of an independent Khalistan.
The circumstances surrounding Nijjar’s death remain a matter of investigation and controversy, sparking diplomatic tensions between Canada and India. As the story unfolds, it continues to draw attention to the complex dynamics of Canada-India relations and the broader implications of the Khalistan movement.