Four years in jail for former managing director of Radio India

Maninder Singh Gill found guilty of for shooting Harjit Singh Atwal at a Surrey Sikh temple in 2010.

Maninder Gill

Radio India’s former managing director, Maninder Singh Gill, has been sentenced to four years in jail for an incident that took place outside a wedding at a Sikh temple in 2010.

On Thursday (March 10) in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver, Gill was convicted of five of the six charges he faced: aggravated assault, discharging a firearm with intent to wound or disfigure, pointing a firearm, possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose and intentionally discharging a firearm while reckless. He was acquitted on a second charge of discharging a firearm with intent to wound or disfigure.

The charges stemmed from an incident in the Guru Nanak gurdwara’s parking lot near 120 Street and 70 Avenue on Aug. 28, 2010 that left Harjit Singh Atwal with a bullet wound to his leg for which he required surgery.

While Gill claimed the shooting was in self-defence – that he fired the gun only after being attacked by Atwal and two other men – Atwal argued he had no contact with Gill until moments before he was shot.

The judge did not buy Gill’s self-defence claim, finding him guilty on all but one charge.

On Thursday morning, Gill was sentenced to four years in jail.

“It’s a very trying time for him… a man who has spent and dedicated his entire life to giving back to the community to be ordered to go to jail. It’s something that he and his family will have to endure,” Gill’s lawyer Tony Paisana told CBC News as he left court today.

Gill and Atwal have had legal dealings previously, as Atwal filed a civil lawsuit and against Gill and Radio India for comments made on air in early 2010.

In 2013, then NDP MP Jinny Sims was criticized after she awarded Gill a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for his charity work.