Surrey man who hacked wife to death sentenced to life in prison

Published: June 21, 2013

Submitted photo of Manmeet Singh and wife Ravinder Bhangu.


A B.C. Supreme Court judge who sentenced a man convicted brutally murdering his wife to life in prison with no parole for 16 years called violence against women “abhorrent” and said it should be denounced in the strongest terms possible.

“Women in Canada, and indeed in any civilized society, are equal persons to be afforded the full protections of the law and have the corresponding rights and privileges, including the complete liberty to make their own choices as human beings in accordance with the freedoms available to all,” Justice Miriam Maisonville said in her decision Friday.

Manmeet Singh, 28, pleaded guilty to the second-degree murder of 23-year-old Ravinder Kaur Bhangu.

At around 11:30 a.m. on July 28, 2011, Singh walked into the Surrey office of Sach Di Awaaz newspaper, where Bhangu worked as an administrative assistant, armed with a hatchet and two knives.

Singh went up to Bhangu and struck her at least twice in head with the hatchet, cracking her skull.

Bhangu raised her arms to defend herself and two of her coworkers tried to help her. Narinder Nayar was hit in the back of his shoulder with the hatchet.

Singh then dropped the hatchet, pulled out one of the knives and stabbed Bhangu more than 30 times.

During the attack Singh told the those in the office that Bhangu was his wife, she was unfaithful to him and she cheated on him.

As he stood next to his dying wife, clutching a bloody knife, Singh asked a bystander to call 911. Singh told the operator, in Punjabi, that he had killed his wife. Surrey RCMP arrested Singh at the office.

Maisonville agreed with the Crown’s submission that the crime was “extraordinarily brutal.”

“It arose from the personal belief of the accused that he was entitled to take revenge,” Maisonville said.

Singh expressed remorse for his actions in a brief statement to the court.

“I have committed a grave mistake,” he said through a Punjabi interpreter. “I don’t have the right to take anybody’s life, so please forgive me.”

Singh and Bhangu met and fell in love in college in India and married in 2008. Singh, who had previously moved to Surrey with his family, sponsored his wife in August 2009.

In April 2011, Bhangu left Singh and moved in with a family friend. Singh tried to convince her to stay, but she asked for a divorce. He was devastated.

Singh’s lawyer argued that the murder was not an honour killing, but the act of a depressed man. He asked the judge to consider Singh’s crime in the context of his upbringing in a “misogynistic culture.”

“I reject that submission,” Maisonville said.

Outside court, Bhangu’s friend and fellow dance teacher Baljinder Gill emphasized that it’s not consistent with the Indian culture to treat women as if they are second-class citizens.

“It’s only weak minds who treat women in that kind of way,” she said. “I can’t blame it on the whole community.”

She and others described Bhangu as beautiful, talented, kind, caring, honest and always smiling.

Ravinder Bhangu’s friend Baljinder Gill (left) speaks outside New
Westminster court. PNG photo

“Each day I wake up she is in front of my eyes. It is not easy,” said Gill.

Sukhjinder Sandhu, the family friend with whom Bhangu lived when she separated from Singh, said the length of Singh’s period of parole ineligibility won’t make a difference for Bhangu’s family.

“I can’t describe their pain,” he said. “I don’t have the words to explain. No matter what, she’s not coming back.”

Tags: ,



Video: Rescue story of a dog that fell into hot tar and turned into a rock

VANCOUVER DESI A team of animal rescuers in Western India spent two days working to free a helpless dog trapped in a pile of hot…
Continue Reading »


Surrey Sikh temple hit-and-run still a mystery after two years

TOM ZYTARUK SURREY NOW SURREY — Surrey Mounties believe somebody must have seen something that can help investigators solve a hit-and-run crash that happened two…
Continue Reading »


Kids sweatshirts made in Pakistan and sold at Kroger, Fred Meyer stores in the U.S. recalled for choking hazard

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS NEW YORK — Nearly 8,000 children’s hoodies are being recalled because of a possible choking risk. No injuries have been reported, but…
Continue Reading »


The cost of not controlling Ebola in Africa? Cases elsewhere, experts warn

By Helen Branswell THE CANADIAN PRESS TORONTO — The revelation that a man with Ebola was diagnosed in a Texas hospital could be seen as…
Continue Reading »

Health Canada bans some drug imports from India; cites quality concerns

THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA — Health Canada says it is banning imports of some medications and drug ingredients produced in India due to concerns about…
Continue Reading »

The cost of not controlling Ebola in Africa? Cases elsewhere, experts warn

By Helen Branswell THE CANADIAN PRESS TORONTO — The revelation that a man with Ebola was diagnosed in a Texas hospital could be seen as…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

body image-beauty-weight-control

Self-compassion leads to positive body image in women

IANS Toronto – Women who accept and tolerate their bodily imperfections appear to have a more positive body image despite their high body mass index…
Continue Reading »

British comedian John Oliver takes aim at Indian prime minister Narendra Modi's U.S. visit on his HBO show Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. YouTube/Screengrab.

British comedian John Oliver again covers Indian politics in HBO show, takes aim at Modi’s U.S. visit (w/ video)

VANCOUVER DESI British comedian John Oliver has covered Indian politics yet again on his new HBO show, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. In this…
Continue Reading »


Last remaining family member of Indian freedom fighter Bhagat Singh dies in Toronto

IANS Chandigarh — The younger sister and last remaining blood relative of revolutionary freedom fighter Bhagat Singh has died in Canada, according to relatives in…
Continue Reading »

Komagata Maru

India honours 100-year anniversary of Komagata Maru with commemorative coins

IANS New Delhi — India on Monday released a set of special coins as part of a year-long centenary commemoration of the 1914 Komagata Maru…
Continue Reading »

Sandy Sidhu main.jpg

Nanaimo’s Sandy Sidhu to appear in film at VIFF, but the actress is still waiting for her big break

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI It took years for Nanaimo’s Sandy Sidhu to admit that she was an aspiring actress. Enrolled at UBC for cell biology…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood Latest

Shah Rukh Khan Deepika Padukone Bollywood sex

Shah Rukh Khan: My films are never male-oriented (w/gallery)

HINDUSTAN TIMES Shah Rukh Khan may be a name big enough to make a film a blockbuster on his own, but he says that his…
Continue Reading »

Sonam Kapoor

Gallery: 10 celebs who did not let diabetes rule their lives

VANCOUVER DESI Did you know Bollywood actress Sonam Kapoor has been living with Diabetes from her teen years? And her Pakistani co-star in Khoobsurat — Fawad…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex

Indian court blocks 72 websites from streaming Bollywood movie ‘Bang Bang’

IANS New Delhi – The Delhi High Court Tuesday directed various internet and telecom service providers to block access to 72 websites hosting the yet-to-be…
Continue Reading »