Press Release By Hayer Family

SURREY: B.C.: On August 26, 1988, at approximately 12:05 p.m. there occurred, in the office of the Express News, a brutal attempted assassination of my father, Tara Singh Hayer.

My father is a well-respected, prominent journalist in the Sikh community. He is the editor of the Express News and the Indo Canadian Times. He is very outspoken on affairs of India and is well known for his moderate views and his strong rejection of violence in the settling of the Punjab disputes. This, unfortunately, is not the popular position with several groups and individuals. Tara Singh has had bomb threats, bomb plants, and death threats. One rumor, as recent as last week, suggested that he was going to be the target of a contract killing due to his continued support of a moderate stance.

On August 25, 1988, a young man came to the office of the Express News. He returned on August 26, 1988 at about 11:35 am. This supposed stranger asked for staff members by name and asked, specifically, for the editor of the Indo Canadian Times. He then engaged employees in lengthy general conversations. He appeared very relaxed and at ease. At some point, he asked one employee “What do you think of Khalistan?” and “Do you believe in killing?”

One hour later — at approximately 12:35 p.m. — Dad arrived. He was identified to the young man as the editor of the Indo Canadian Times. The young man quickly left. Dad walked to the back of the office and returned to the front counter. The door opened. The young man stood at the door with a handgun and cold bloodedly. Fired 5 or 6 bullets at my father. Dad tried to evade but was still struck by 3 bullets. This criminal was chased by several brave people and apprehended and held. We owe a debt of gratitude to those brave citizens that stopped this coldblooded criminal.

We, Tara Singh Hayer’s family, feel that this is heinous crime. We, as Canadians, comprise a multicultural society with diverse opinions. This crime brings home the fact that there are those that would threaten our democratic rights to freedom of the press and our freedom of speech by committing such an act. These subversives would conspire to silence the voice of moderation. We as Canadians must give these criminals that at: tempt assassination, the clear message that we will not tolerate this form of Suppression of our rights. We will not tolerate the gunning down of Canadian citizens supporting moderation.

From Hayer Family

Article extracted from this publication >> September 9, 1988