Three months after the shooting outside a Sikh temple in Surrey, British Columbia, where Hardeep Singh Nijjar lost his life, not much has been revealed about the incident or its motives by homicide investigators. They have only shared descriptions of potential suspects and asked for the public’s help in providing information.
No one has been charged in connection with the case, and the RCMP-led homicide squad in the Vancouver region has refrained from making public statements about it for over a month.
Following Prime Minister Trudeau’s statement in the House of Commons, Sgt. Timothy Pierotti from the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) mentioned that investigators were collaborating closely with local, provincial, and national law enforcement agencies to progress in what they consider a high-priority investigation.
Back in June, IHIT stated that they had not linked the shooting to foreign interference, and there was no indication that the Sikh community in Canada was in danger.
Nijjar, who served as the president of the Guru Nanak Gurdwara and was wanted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), was shot on the evening of June 18 outside the temple in Surrey. According to the RCMP, he was targeted by two masked gunmen with sturdy builds, who escaped on foot and later fled in a waiting car.
As Nijjar was leaving the temple in his grey Dodge Ram pickup truck, two gunmen approached the driver-side window, fired multiple shots, and then fled the scene. Subsequent footage showed Nijjar slumped in his vehicle, with a shattered window and numerous spent shell casings on the ground.
In August, homicide investigators disclosed their search for a third suspect believed to be the getaway driver, who reportedly waited in a silver 2008 Toyota Camry for the gunmen.
Before the shooting, Nijjar had disclosed that he received cryptic warnings from Canadian Security Intelligence Service officers about potential threats to his safety.
Earlier, Nijjar had denied any links to the killing of Ripudaman Singh Malik in July 2021. Malik, who was acquitted in the Air India bombing case, was murdered in July, Nijjar had stated that he had no conflicts with Malik, despite an earlier dispute related to Malik’s printing of the Sikh holy book, Guru Granth Sahib, in Surrey, which violated a religious edict.
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It has come to light that their dispute persisted when Malik was killed outside his Surrey import business.
In February, Malik’s lawyer son, Jaspreet, initiated a lawsuit against Nijjar and the Guru Nanak society to reclaim a special printing press that had been handed over to the Surrey gurdwara in August 2020 by his father and an associate.
The lawsuit claims that the equipment belongs to the Satnam Parchar Religious Society, a nonprofit group and Nijjar had refused to return it despite being ordered by the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of the Sikhs.