VANCOUVER: An Indo-Canadian man, who killed his young wife in broad daylight two years ago in the Vancouver suburb of Surrey, has been given life term with no possibility of parole for 16 years.
Manmeet Singh, 28, had killed his wife Ravinder Kaur Bhangu on July 28, 2011, in the office of Punjabi newspaper Sach Di Awaz in Surrey. The man had walked into the newspaper office where his wife worked as an assistant and hit her with a hatchet, breaking her skull. Even as some of Bhangu’s co-workers tried to protect the 24-year-old woman, Singh dropped his hatchet and pulled out a knife with which he stabbed her 30 times.
The couple, who had a love marriage in 2008 in Rajpura in Punjab before coming to Canada in 2009, had marital problems. Bhangu had left Singh and started living with one of her family friends in Surrey.
Singh reportedly tried to reconcile, but Bhangu wanted a divorce.
Singh was charged with first-degree murder, and he pleaded guilty during the trial.
Jailing him for life on Friday, Justice Miriam Maisonville of the British Columbia Supreme Court said, “Women in Canada, and indeed in any civilized society, are equal persons to be afforded the full protections of the law and have the corresponding rights and privileges, including the complete liberty to make their own choices as human beings in accordance with the freedoms available to all.”
Singh, who has no chance of a parole for 16years, in his brief statement at his sentencing expressed his remorse for his action.
“I don’t have the right to take anybody’s life, so please forgive me,’’ he said in Punjabi.
Bhangu’s murder was not the first of its kind. Four years before this shocking murder, there had been a spate of killings of four wives by their Punjabi husbands within a couple of months which stunned the huge Indo-Canadian community.