Honour-killing case before the Supreme Court Monday
Jaswinder Sihu and the man she married
The fascinating case of a B.C. couple accused by the Indian government of arranging the honour-killing of a young female relative and Canadian citizen will be back before the Supreme Court of Canada Monday some 17 years after the incident. Malkit Sidhu and Surjit Badesha, both of Maple Ridge, B.C. are accused in their native land with complicity in the death of Jaswinder (Jassi) Sidhu, also a naturalized Canadian, while she was in India in 2000. The alleged motive was the disgrace that Jaswinder had brought on the family by marrying a rickshaw driver, a man of much lower caste The CBC recounts that Indian courts asked to have the pair extradited to face trial, but a surrender order signed by former Justice Minister Peter MacKay was challenged and ultimately struck down by a B.C. appeals court last year.
The ruling said the pair could be subject to violence, torture or neglect based on India’s human rights record. But the Canadian government will argue Monday that the B.C. appeal court “erred” and called its decision an “unwarranted interference” with the minister’s order to return alleged perpetrators in the “brutal and notorious honour killing of a Canadian citizen.” It said the ruling jeopardized Canada’s ability to live up to its obligations to extradition treaty partners. And by the by, it may cause much living room and kitchen table discussion about Canadian values as well.