Vehicle waited for Ripudaman Singh Malik hours before shooting in B.C.: police

A vehicle with people inside was waiting for Ripudaman Singh Malik hours before he was killed in a parking lot in Surrey, B.C., police say.

Malik, 75, was one of the two men acquitted in the 1985 Air India terrorist bombings that killed 331 people.

He was shot in his vehicle in a parking lot not far from his clothing business on Thursday.

Sgt. David Lee of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team told a news conference that a white Honda CRV pulled up near the scene of the shooting at around 7 a.m. and Malik was shot and killed at about 9:30 that morning.

“The occupants were waiting for Mr. Malik,” he said.

The same vehicle was found on fire a short time later not far from where Malik was murdered.

Police released a photo and video of the car driving through a strip-mall parking lot and asked for the public’s help in finding out who was inside.

The driver can’t be seen in the video and the sun’s reflection on the passenger-side window makes it difficult to see if anyone is in that seat. The back windows are blacked out.

“We understand this is a high-profile international story, however we urge people not to speculate as to the motive. Our homicide investigators will be following the evidence,” Lee said.

Malik and his co-accused, Ajaib Singh Bagri, were found not guilty in March 2005 of murder and conspiracy in a pair of Air India bombings that killed 331 people on June 23, 1985.

Bombs were placed on two planes. The first aircraft blew up over the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Ireland, killing all 329 aboard.

The second bomb that was to be transferred to an Air India jet in Tokyo exploded prematurely, killing two baggage handlers at the Narita airport.

Lee said he can confirm that several shots were fired but he wouldn’t discuss the nature of the injuries because the investigation was ongoing.

An employee of a car wash near the scene of the shooting said he heard the shots and when he went outside he saw Malik, shot three times and unconscious in his vehicle.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 15, 2022.