Posted by: Singh Is King | Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Sikh Youth say founder not involved in Air India bombing

Talwinder Singh Parmar was killed by Punjab police in 1992.Talwinder Singh Parmar was killed by Punjab police in 1992.
Photograph by : CanWest News Service file

Kim Bolan, Vancouver Sun
Published: Tuesday, July 31, 2007

VANCOUVER — Former leaders of the International Sikh Youth Federation say it is ridiculous to suggest that one of the group’s founders, Lakhbir Singh Brar, was involved in the 1985 Air India bombing.
And they slammed reports coming out of India that suspected bombing mastermind Talwinder Singh Parmar implicated Brar during an alleged confession made while he was being interrogated — some say tortured — by Punjab police, who later killed the Canadian.
Satinderpal Singh Gill, who was once the ISYF’s world leader, said he suspects the Indian government is trying to manipulate public opinion with an article in Telhelka Magazine this week quoting a former Punjab police officer.

The article said Harmail Singh Chandi arrested Parmar in September 1992 and was present while Parmar was interrogated until he admitted to a role in the bombing, which he said was masterminded by Brar with the help of Inderjit Singh Reyat. Chandi said Parmar was later killed on the orders of senior Punjab police officers.

Some details of Chandi’s story came out during pre-trial arguments at the trial of Ajaib Singh Bagri and Ripudaman Singh Malik, who were later acquitted.

Chandi flew to Canada in June to present the evidence at the Air India inquiry. Described only as a mystery witness with “seismic evidence,” Chandi changed his mind about testifying, citing security concerns.

Parmar’s alleged confession contradicts what Reyat, the only man convicted in the Air India bombing, told police. Reyat said it was Parmar who asked him to build a powerful explosive device to blow up something big in India. Reyat claimed he had no idea his work was to be used to target two Air India flights, leading to 331 deaths.

Gill, who knew both Brar and Parmar in the pre-bombing days, said both men are innocent.

“The Indian government want to put the blame sometime on the ISYF and sometime the Babbar Khalsa. They want to destroy the organizations, that’s what they try to do.”

Canada considers both the ISYF and the Babbar Khalsa terrorist groups.

Former ISYF national spokesman Manmohan Singh said when Brar arrived in Vancouver in April 1985 and claimed refugee status, he had no contact with Parmar and his Babbar Khalsa members.

“He did not have the capability to do what they are talking about,” Singh said. “All the statements of Talwinder are coming from the government of India … Under torture, the statement has no value.”

Singh said Parmar had a conflict with the ISYF and the two groups had little to do with each other.

“Talwinder would never had taken an opinion from Lakhbir.”

Journalist Sukhminder Singh Cheema, who at one time was affiliated with the ISYF, said RCMP investigations have turned up no evidence of Brar’s involvement.

“It is all B-S. They don’t have any supporting evidence.”

Cheema, now a popular host on Radio India, said the two militant separatist groups would never have done “this type of operation together.”

“Talwinder and his supporters always considered Lakhbir Singh a coward. They never would have done something.” he said.

 

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