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Former Ontario PM to review A-I case

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Last updated on: April 27, 2005 13:04 IST

Canada has appointed former Ontario premier Rob Rae to review the Air-India bombing trial and advice the government whether a public inquiry is needed into the 1985 tragedy, after relatives of those killed flayed acquittal of the main accused in the case.

Rae will review all evidence, previous inquiry findings related to the case and actions taken by police after the bombing of Kanishka flight off the coast of Ireland, killing 329 people, Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan said.

British Colombia Supreme Court had in March found main accused Ripudaman Singh Malik, a Vancouver-based millionaire businessman, and Kamloops mill worker Ajaib Singh Bagri not guilty in the case, triggering a wave of protests from relatives of the victims.

Stunned by the acquittal, relatives of the victims had termed the judgement a "second tragedy" and demanded a public inquiry into the trial, considered one of the most exhaustive and expensive trials in Canadian history.

"Only when we have a good understanding of any outstanding questions that can reasonably be answered now can
we decide on the next steps, but I want to emphasise that I am open to all options," McLellan said in a written statement
on Tuesday, a media report said.

Rae, who has been tasked with providing McLellan independent advice on the subject, will also review transportation and security measures taken by the goverment since 1985, Globeandmail reported.

The Kanishka Verdict