Man deported for belonging to Sikh separatist group

Published: April 25, 2014

The Babbar Khalsa group was linked to the Air India bombing. (PNG Archive)

KEVEN DREWS
THE CANADIAN PRESS

VANCOUVER — Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board has ordered the deportation of a British man for belonging to a Sikh separatist group that was engaged in terrorism.

Board member Geoff Rempel said in a ruling released Friday that Gurmej Singh Gill was a prominent member of Babbar Khalsa, which was also known as Babbar Khalsa International, and was personally connected to the group’s international leaders, travelled extensively, attended conferences and engaged the media.

Rempel said Gill was likely aware of Babbar Khalsa’s terrorist activities during his tenure with the group, whether or not he supported them.

“It is difficult to believe that Mr. Gill could have been unaware of the terrorist activities perpetrated by the BK/BKI in the 1980s and early 1990s, yet he remained a prominent member of the organization for many years,” said Rempel.

“Even if Mr. Gill was comparatively moderate and did not approve of those tactics himself, he continued to belong to the organization.”

As a result, Gill is inadmissible to Canada under the Immigrations and Refugee Protection Act, ruled Rempel.

Sukhjinder Grewal, Gill’s lawyer, was not immediately available for comment.

When asked if Gill had been deported, the Canada Border Services Agency said it doesn’t speak to individual cases because of privacy laws.

“The decision to remove someone from Canada is not taken lightly,” the agency stated in an email. “The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act states that removal orders must be enforced as soon as possible. The CBSA is firmly committed to doing this.”

Babbar Khalsa has been linked to the 1985 Air India bombing that killed 331 people on two flights that originated in Vancouver, and the Canadian government added it to a list of banned terror groups in 2003.

Gill had argued there were several unconnected Babbar Khalsa groups that used the same name but claimed that the one he belonged to was unaffiliated with the Babbar Khalsa that is considered a terrorist organization.

His son, Navdej Singh Gill, testified at the admissibility hearing that his father did not work with any other Babbar Khalsa groups and never met with them.

A Canadian Security Intelligence Service report cited by Rempel states Babbar Khalsa was created in 1978, and Talwinder Singh Parmar, the alleged mastermind of the Air India plot,  established the Canadian arm in 1979.

The report also treats Babbar Khalsa and Babbar Khalsa International as the same entity and “provides little if any reason to distinguish the two or any factions.”

“BK/BKI chapters around the world seem to have operated mostly in co-operation with each other under the same name and banner, sharing the same religious conservatism and more importantly the same ultimate political objective,” wrote Rempel.

“There is sufficient evidence before me to establish reasonable grounds that the BK/BKI is a distinct organization, although loosely structured.”

The ruling states Gill became a member of the group in 1978 but left after moving to Canada in 1982 “because he did not agree with Talwinder Singh Parmar.”

Parmar, who was killed by police in India in 1992, was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Air India bombing trial and was considered the mastermind of the plot.

Ajaib Singh Bagri and Ripudaman Singh Malik were later acquitted in the twin bombings by a B.C. Supreme Court judge in 2005.

Gill became a permanent resident of Canada in 1982 but the ruling states he surrendered the status in 1984.

He was stopped by border officials at Vancouver International Airport in November 2013 and ordered to appear before the Immigration and Refuge Board.

Under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, Gill can apply to Federal Court for a judicial review of the decision.

Tags: , ,




Featured

Radio towers owned by KRPI are pictured on Thursday, May 28, near Ferndale, Washington. The towers are located south of Ferndale near the Silver Reef Casino.

Tsawwassen residents fear interference from relocated radio towers

KENT SPENCER VANCOUVER DESI Few things could be more alarming during a personal phone call than suddenly being interrupted by the sound of yelling on…
Continue Reading »

rape-India

Indian website Mintified’s social media campaign saying ‘all men are not rapists’ backfires

HINDUSTAN TIMES An Indian website’s social media campaign that “all men are not rapists” has come in for intense criticism over its “dangerous message”. Mintified started a…
Continue Reading »

Abbotsford

End Gang Life: Dial-a-doper is truly risky business

SGT. LINDSEY HOUGHTON SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. released brand new videos in the End Gang Life campaign. …
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Bollywood

Bollywood choreographer Shiamak’s team to rock Surrey with the annual Summer Funk

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood dance guru Shiamak Davar’s students are all set to rock Surrey in June with their annual Summer Funk. The ‘Rise of the…
Continue Reading »

Abbotsford

End Gang Life: Dial-a-doper is truly risky business

SGT. LINDSEY HOUGHTON SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. released brand new videos in the End Gang Life campaign. …
Continue Reading »

India-Vancouver-desi

Yoga Day organizers in Vancouver still meditating on details

IAN AUSTIN VANCOUVER DESI It’s shaping up to be one groovy day. June 21 is Car-Free Day in Vancouver, plus it’s International Yoga Day —…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

sexy legs and breasts

Men prefer brains over big breasts and long legs: Study

IANS London – What do men prefer, beauty or brains? According to a British evolutionary biologist, men prefer intelligence over big breasts and long legs…
Continue Reading »

Aga Khan

PM Harper, Aga Khan discuss threat posed by violent extremists

VANCOUVER DESI Prime Minister Stephen Harper expressed his condolences to the Aga Khan Tuesday for the recent terrorist attack on the Ismaili community in Pakistan. The spiritual…
Continue Reading »

tallest man-India-desi

India’s tallest man spends his days in a cage-like structure posing for photos at an amusement park

VANCOUVER DESI Life is not easy for India’s tallest man Dharmendra Singh, who stands at 8-ft 1-inch, his height being the biggest barrier for his career and…
Continue Reading »

indian summer

It’s so hot in India right now the roads are literally melting

At least 1,100 dead in month-long heatwave THE ASSOCIATED PRESS & NATIONAL POST STAFF It’s so hot in India right now that the streets are…
Continue Reading »

transgender principal

India gets its first transgender college principal

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS KOLKATA, India — India has for the first time appointed a transgender as the principal of a college, a top education official…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Bollywood

Bollywood choreographer Shiamak’s team to rock Surrey with the annual Summer Funk

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood dance guru Shiamak Davar’s students are all set to rock Surrey in June with their annual Summer Funk. The ‘Rise of the…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex

Bollywood actress Lara Dutta is the surprise package in ‘Singh Is Bliing’

IANS Mumbai – Actor-filmmaker Prabhudheva, who is directing “Singh Is Bliing”, says Lara Dutta will be a surprise package in the film. “I was impressed…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood-Hollywood

Bollywood diva Priyanka Chopra hopes “after Quantico, Indian actors are taken seriously”

IANS Mumbai – She remembers being bullied as a “brownie” in her teenage years in the US. But now Priyanka Chopra, who has landed a…
Continue Reading »