A man who was initially accused but later acquitted for allegedly bombing an Air India flight back in 1985 is dead.

He was identified as Ripudaman Singh Malik who was reportedly shot dead in his car in Surrey, British Columbia. Before he was killed, Malik denied any involvement in the terror attack that claimed the lives of 329 people, BBC.com reported.

“The man was provided first aid by attending officers until emergency health services took over his care,” constable Sarbjit Sangha said. “The injured man succumbed to his injuries on scene.”

The identity of Malik was not initially released by authorities. However, his family confirmed that it was him.

Malik was acquitted in 2005 but police were accused of not carrying out the investigation properly.

The bombing was widely believed to have been carried out by Sikhs. It is believed that the Canadian-based Sikhs were retaliating for India’s deadly 1984 storming of the Golden Temple.

Considered the holiest shrine in the Sikh region, it remains Canada’s deadliest terror attack to this day.

Malik underwent a two-year trial for the 1985 Air India flight bombing. Also accused was Ajaib Singh Bagri. Both were acquitted of mass murder and conspiracy charges tied to the two bombings.

According to Canadian Police, they are still trying to figure out the motive behind the targeted killing of Malik.

It was on June 23, 1985, when Air India flight 182 from Canada blew up off the Irish Coast. All 329 people on board died, most of them Canadian citizens.

At about the same time, there was a second bombing in Japan. Two baggage handlers were killed as a result of the explosion.

Bagri and Malik were accused of planting the explosives on board the plane. However, the prosecution ended up turning on the reliability of key prosecution witnesses, who claimed the accused had privately confessed to involvement in the bombing.

Crime Scene
Representation image. Shutterstock/BasPhoto

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