Ceremony at memorial recalls Kanishka victims | india | Hindustan Times
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Ceremony at memorial recalls Kanishka victims

india Updated: Jun 24, 2008 03:26 IST
Gurinder Gill

Relatives and friends assembled at the Kanishka memorial here on Monday to lay wreaths as Canada observed the National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Terrorism.

It was on this day in 1985 that Air-India's Boeing-747 Kanishka jet was blown up in midair off the Irish coast, killing all 329 people on board.

The memorial features a sundial, marking the inevitable passage of time.

The granite inscription wall is oriented in the direction of Ireland, the crash site. It bears the names of the 331 victims. These include the Kanishka passengers and crew as well as two baggage handlers killed by a bomb at Narita airport, Japan, while loading an Air-India flight on the same day that Kanishka was bombed.

The sundial marks the passage of the sun on the fateful day.

Of the total $625,000 project cost, the federal government committed $400,000 and the provincial government the rest. Land in Humber Bay East was donated by the City of Toronto.

“I come here whenever I feel lost or emotional. It gives me peace and inner strength,” says Manish, who lost a loved one in the terrorist attack.

The bombing conspiracy trial has been considered the most expensive in Canadian history, costing nearly CAD $130 million. Of the 329 victims, 289 were Canadians, a majority from the Toronto area.

Ratan Singh, who lost a loved one, says the monument brings peace, but not justice.