Feb 26, 2018
By Jane Brown
A Surrey, British Columbia man convicted of attempted murder in the 1980s is talking about his controversial appearance at an event during Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s trip to India.
Jaspal Atwal tells The Canadian Press he was invited to two events — in New Delhi and Mumbai — by the Canadian high commissioner’s office.
He says he volunteered to bow out of the New Delhi event because he didn’t want to further embarrass Trudeau after photos of Atwal and Trudeau’s wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, at the event in Mumbai garnered negative media attention.
But the Prime Minister’s Office says there is no merit to the assertions by Atwal and that Atwal and Trudeau are not friends.
A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office also insists Atwal’s invitation to the New Delhi event was rescinded by the high commission.
British Columbia Liberal MP Randeep Sarai has said in a statement it was his choice alone to include Atwal on the guest list and he realized afterwards he exercised poor judgement in doing so.
Atwal was convicted of trying to kill an Indian cabinet minister during a visit to Vancouver Island in 1986.