Pubdate: Fri, 20 Jan 2005
Source: Hindustan Times (India)
Copyright: 2005, Hindustan Times Ltd.


High on a cocktail of drugs, sex and money, gang wars of Indo-Canadian 
groups have claimed two more victims, raising the violence-related death 
toll in Canada in the community to 82 in the last 15 years.

Surrey-based Jatinder 'Jerry' Singh Natt, 22, and Sukhjinder 'Baboo' Singh 
Sohal, 39, were shot dead in a gangland-style hit in Surrey last week, 
according to the South Asian Observer.

Their bodies were found inside a blue Ford F150 truck. Natt, in the 
backseat, was pronounced dead inside the vehicle while Sohal, in the front 
passenger seat, died later in a hospital.

Piara Singh Natt, Jerry's uncle and a member of the Sikh community in 
Surrey, was celebrating the birth of a grandchild when he was informed 
about the incident. But what led to the cold-blooded killing of his nephew, 
he couldn't or wouldn't say.

Some media reports quoted him as saying: "I am not sure what was wrong. I 
don't know yet."

Piara Singh, who was a leader of the International Sikh Youth Federation 
during the 1980s, said the murder mystery would be solved if the police 
found out who was driving the truck.

He also denied knowing if his deceased nephew had been involved in any 
illegal drug activity.

Jerry Natt had a criminal record and was on probation when he was gunned 
down. It has been reported that both Jerry and his elder brother, Parbir 
Singh Natt, were charged with assault and weapon possession in connection 
with a June 18, 2000 incident in Vancouver.

Jerry Natt had pleaded guilty and received a conditional discharge with two 
years of probation Feb 25, 2003.

Sukhjinder Sohal had been all set to follow his family to India when he was 
gunned down. His brother, Gurinder Sohal, said the police told him that his 
brother was not in the driver's seat although the truck belonged to him.

Gurpinderjit Kaur Sohal, 30, rushed back from India with her two children, 
Amrit, 8, and Saveena, 10, on hearing of her husband's death.

The police were not forthcoming about the motive behind the crime but said 
it was not a stray incident.

Three weeks ago, the body of 25-year-old Surrey resident Mohammed Sadiq 
Qayum was found in Chilliwack. Qayum's murder is also being investigated.

The warfare is a matter of concern for the people of South Asian origin 
living in and around the Greater Vancouver Area.

Solicitor-general Rich Coleman said last year that the government would 
provide $1 million for a new police task force to target Indo-Canadian gang 
violence. He said the police would work with community leaders to try to 
end more than a decade of gang wars that have done away with dozens of 
young Indo-Canadians.

However, this was not the first task force set up for the purpose. A police 
task force had been set up secretly three years ago but was disbanded after 
it drew criticism from the community.

But this time, the authorities say they mean business. The community 
leaders are outraged at the delay in making the task force operational.

Balwant Singh Gill, president of Surrey's Guru Nanak temple, said: "It is a 
very slow process and these young men are still dying."
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