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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 1:03 pm
 


Quote:
MP made visa call for failed assassin
North Shore Liberal Don Bell queried India consul-general
Kim Bolan, Vancouver Sun
Published: Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A Liberal MP has intervened on behalf of a would-be assassin trying to get a visa to visit his native India.

North Vancouver MP Don Bell confirmed he made a call to the Indian consul-general two weeks ago for Surrey resident Jaspal Singh Atwal, convicted in the attempted murder of a visiting Punjabi cabinet minister in 1986.


Bell said he was asked by fellow Liberal Ujjal Dosanjh, MP for Vancouver South, who Atwal approached for assistance several months ago. Dosanjh thought that it would be inappropriate if he followed up, given that Atwal was charged with and acquitted of beating him with a metal pipe in 1985.

"I did phone the consul-general. His file was referred to me. He is not a North Shore resident. But I had a call from Ujjal Dosanjh's office. Originally Jaspal Atwal came here and said he had been suggested by Ujjal," Bell said. "It wasn't going to bat for him. I indicated that I would find out what the situation was."

Atwal was described in parole records as the leader of a group of four members of the International Sikh Youth Federation who ambushed Malkiat Singh Sidhu on an isolated Vancouver Island road. Sidhu survived the attempt on his life, but was later assassinated in India.

Atwal admitted to the National Parole Board that he was the gunman who fired several shots at Sidhu, two of which injured the visitor to B.C., who was attending his nephew's wedding.

"You admit to and have accepted responsibility for your part in the offence and recognize that what you did is totally unacceptable to the Canadian community and constituted an act of political terrorism," say parole board records obtained by The Vancouver Sun.

Atwal, who remains on parole, said in an interview that he is not a "terrorist" and should be allowed to visit India as he has done twice before since first getting parole in 1992.

He said he went to the Liberal MPs for help despite living in the Surrey riding of Conservative MP Nina Grewal because he is a complainant in an RCMP investigation of Grewal's husband Gurmant Grewal -- the former MP for Surrey Newton.

"So I don't want to go to Nina. And she is not going to help me anyway," Atwal said.

But Bell said he thought Atwal was a constituent of Dosanjh's when he agreed to call the consul-general.

"I got the impression that Ujjal was his MP. Who is his MP then?" Bell asked during an interview with The Vancouver Sun.

Bell claimed he knew nothing about Atwal's conviction in the political assassination plot when he called the Vancouver consul-general and that Dosanjh had not mentioned it to him.

"The main thing I knew about were the charges involving Ujjal," Bell said. "I didn't have the other background."

Dosanjh said that he did not pass on any information about Atwal's political crime to Bell because he assumed Atwal would disclose everything.

"I talked to Don months ago saying this guy wants an MP to help him," Dosanjh told The Sun. "I believe anyone who walks into my riding office is entitled to a fair hearing."

Dosanjh said he has no ill will against Atwal, despite telling a judge that Atwal was his assailant in a political attack in February 1985. Even though Atwal was acquitted of assault, Dosanjh thought it would be better if another MP dealt with Atwal's grievance about being denied a visa to India.

"I suggested he go see someone else," Dosanjh said. "I assumed Mr. Atwal would disclose his full history to Don ... We didn't talk about his record."

Bell said it was the Indian consul-general who told him about Atwal's role in the assassination plot.

"They made reference to the terrorist allegations. I knew about the situation with Ujjal. I had been told there was some other history, background and I said I will contact the consul-general and see what they have got to say," Bell said. "I didn't have all the background when he first came in."

Bell said he called Atwal last week and said he wouldn't be doing any more to help him.

Grewal, who is still under investigation over allegations he mishandled political donations, said he believes Atwal has been helped by the Liberals because Atwal filed the complaint against him.

"I don't have any doubt in my mind that it is linked," Grewal said. "It is a false complaint he laid against me. The RCMP is still investigating, but I am waiting to be cleared. I know I will be cleared."

Grewal said Atwal approached him for help with his visa woes in 2003 and he refused to get involved because of the serious criminal conviction.

"That's why he is angry with me. I refused to intervene in this situation," Grewal said.

Grewal said that even if Bell did not know Atwal's background when he was approached, Dosanjh certainly did and should have made sure no Liberal got involved.

Balwant Singh Gill, president of Surrey's Guru Nanak temple, said he was shocked that the Liberals would be trying to intervene for Atwal.

"It is not acceptable. He is convicted in a serious case. Why are they phoning the consul-general on his behalf?" Gill said. "I don't know what Ujjal is thinking -- what the hell he is doing? This guy attacked that minister, Malkiat Singh Sidhu."

Gill said the ISYF, of which Atwal was a member, is now a banned terrorist group. "If someone phones on someone's behalf, they should know him better. They should know who they are, what they have done. It is stupid," Gill said.


Atwal said he should be able to visit his homeland and has paid his dues.

"I know what I am and I know who I am. Thirty-six years I live in the country. I have nothing against anyone. I have a lot of good citizenship awards and all kinds of that stuff," Atwal said.

In fact, Atwal's visa to visit India was cancelled and his full parole revoked in 2002 after police identified him as a suspect in a drive-by shooting of his brother's house, a December 2002 parole decision states. "Your son was charged with uttering threats against your brother's family and there appears to be an ongoing feud between the two families."

Atwal was not charged in the drive-by and his brother died unexpectedly. He got full parole again, with the added condition that he have no contact with his brother's family.

"Tense family relationships involving threats and use of weapons became a significant risk factor given your criminal history," the parole board said.

kbolan@png.canwest.com


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 1:27 pm
 


Yeah, so? The Indian government should say yes and then take care of him when he get's there.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:02 pm
 


You're right. Nothing to see citizen.
move along.

I especially like how this guy was one of the main complaints against Grewal. I wonder how the media could have missed that minor detail.

You'd think being the leader of a terrorist group (International Sikh Youth Federation), charged with and acquitted of beating people with a metal pipe, and being the gunman who fired several shots at another person would colour his credability...


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:11 pm
 


What makes you think that his credibility didn't come up in the investigation? I'm sure it would have....


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:17 pm
 


What makes me wonder is why his background didn't come up in the press. They usually like that sort of thing.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:22 pm
 


The media doesn't really research stories. They pretty much just take the press packages given to them by the RCMP, The Conservatives, The Liberals, or whoever, and then re-print what they're told and what they think of it...

Sad but true.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:17 pm
 


ridenrain wrote:
You'd think being the leader of a terrorist group (International Sikh Youth Federation), charged with and acquitted of beating people with a metal pipe, and being the gunman who fired several shots at another person would colour his credability...


Quote:
Atwal was described in parole records as the leader of a group of four members of the International Sikh Youth Federation who ambushed Malkiat Singh Sidhu on an isolated Vancouver Island road. Sidhu survived the attempt on his life, but was later assassinated in India.


Now, I could be mistaken, but I think they are referring to Atwal and his cohorts as a group formed within the International Sikh Youth Federation. I doubt that organization would have condoned their actions.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:39 pm
 


Ok. I was on a roll and didn't research my story as well as I should..
(I guess it does work that way, VitC :D )

Perhaps a sub group, but the sub group of a terrorist organizaton is still a terrorist organization:


Quote:
In 1978, in Clearbrook, BC, a Canadian Sikh named Beant Dhalawi was found dead after a C-clamp was placed on his skull and slowly tightened until his skull fractured. He was the first Canadian citizen to be murdered by Sikh fundamentalists--over the next 30 years, more than 160 others would join him.

On June 19th, 2003, the Canadian Federal government finally listed Babbar Khalsa, the International Sikh Youth Federation, and the Khalistan Commando Force as terrorist groups--making membership or any act on behalf of these organizations illegal. It took a long time.


Source


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 8:04 pm
 


I was unaware the International Sikh Youth Federation was listed as a terrorist group. My bad.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:32 pm
 


Bump as this seems somewhat relevant to current events.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:40 pm
 


How is this 12 year old post is relevant to current events?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 26, 2018 7:11 am
 


Hyack wrote:
How is this 12 year old post is relevant to current events?


Quote:
A Liberal MP has intervened on behalf of a would-be assassin trying to get a visa to visit his native India.

North Vancouver MP Don Bell confirmed he made a call to the Indian consul-general two weeks ago for Surrey resident Jaspal Singh Atwal, convicted in the attempted murder of a visiting Punjabi cabinet minister in 1986.


Seems like it actually is a relevant Zombie thread!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2018 2:13 pm
 


He's got some nerve asking Dosanjh to help him. A person as dangerous as this should not be allowed abroad at all.


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