Former would-be assassin Jaspal Atwal charged with uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm

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      Jaspal Singh Atwal is in the news again for all the wrong reasons.

      The former would-be assassin has been charged with uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm.

      In February Atwal received a torrent of publicity around the world after showing up in separate photographs alongside Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie.

      The media blitz came after Atwal appeared on a guest list at a dinner the Trudeaus were going to attend at the Canadian High Commission in Delhi.

      In the 1980s, Atwal was convicted in the attempted murder of a state cabinet minister from Punjab, Malkiat Singh Sidhu, who was attending a wedding on northern Vancouver Island.

      The Surrey Mounties are expected to provide more details to the media on Monday (May 14) about Atwal's new charge. The allegation has not been proven in court.

      Last February, Atwal was famously photographed beside Sophie Grégoire Trudeau at an event with Bollywood film insiders in Mumbai.

      The following month, he and his lawyer, Rishi Gill, held a news conference, in which Gill claimed that his client has been "raked over the coals" in the media.

      When this image of Jaspal Atwal showed up on the CBC website, there was no photo credit, which fuelled beliefs that the Indian government might have helped distribute it.
      CBC screen shot

      The prime minister's national security adviser, Daniel Jean, told Canadian journalists in India that factions within the Indian government might have been responsible for Atwal's name appearing on the guest list at the Delhi event.

      That prompted speculation in the Canadian Sikh community, in particular, that the Indian government led by Narendra Modi was trying to embarrass Trudeau by linking him to Sikh separatism.

      The movement for an independent homeland for Sikhs died out in India more than two decades ago.

      Meanwhile, the Liberal MP for Surrey Centre, Randeep Singh Sarai, told the Surrey Now-Leader that he submitted Atwal's name to the Canadian High Commission.

      However, Sarai said he did not invite him; he simply passed the name along because Atwal is a "media personality".

      Atwal has been associated with Media Waves Communications, which is a Surrey-based Internet radio station.