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Miscreants fire at house of Surrey temple head’s son in Canada

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The residence of Lakshmi Narayan Mandir head’s son was fired at Surrey in Canada’s British Columbia in the early hours of Wednesday even as investigators were yet to attribute a motive for the attack as they looked for the shooters.

Khalistani elements earlier this year pasted posters targeting India’s senior-most diplomats on the Surrey temple’s gate and walls. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Khalistani elements earlier this year pasted posters targeting India’s senior-most diplomats on the Surrey temple’s gate and walls. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Satish Kumar, the temple head, said between 11 and 14 bullets were fired. “I can say nothing about why it happened,” he said. Kumar added there have been cases of extortion in the area. “My son recently sold an insurance agency and they may have thought he had a lot of money.”

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The temple was in the news when its members last month countered a protest of the secessionist group Sikhs for Justice against the killing of Khalistani figure Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18 in Surrey.

Months later, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s allegation of the involvement of Indian government agents in Nijjar’s killing triggered a diplomatic row. The allegation prompted India to ask Canada to withdraw 41 of the 62 its diplomats.

Khalistani elements pasted posters targeting India’s senior-most diplomats on the Surrey temple’s gate and walls. There have been a series of cases of vandalisation of temples in British Columbia.

Kumar and his son are prominent businesspersons in the area, which has reported a spate of extortion attempts. On November 23, police cited extortions targeting business owners while encouraging anyone who may be a victim to call.

Lakshmi Narayan Mandir council member Parshotam Goel said they were concerned but had no clue who was behind the firing. “…we do not want to accuse anyone without proof.”

In a statement on Thursday, Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s Surrey detachment said the attack was under investigation. “…officers responded to reports of shots fired at the residence at around 8am on Wednesday morning.”

There were no injuries but the residence sustained damage consistent with bullet holes. “Officers are still working to determine the motive of this incident,” the statement said.

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