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Memorial for Kanishka victims vandalised

world Updated: May 20, 2010 18:33 IST

A monument built for the victims of the 1985 bombing of Air India's Kanishka flight has been vandalised ahead of the event's 25th anniversary, prompting the Canadian police to launch an investigation into the incident.

Members of the Indo-Canadian community are outraged that someone has stolen earlier this month a stainless steel "gnomon" or "shadow caster" that produces a shadow on a memorial sundial when lit by the sun.

The vandals also used black paint to spray graffiti on the face of the sundial.

The monument, located in Humber Bay Park East in Toronto, also features a wall naming the 329 people who were killed when a bomb exploded on Air India's Kanishka Flight 182 as it travelled off the coast of Ireland on June 23, 1985.

Two baggage handlers killed by an associated bomb at Narita Airport in Japan are honoured on the wall as well.

Cleaners have removed the graffiti and officials are hoping to have a newly-built gnomon installed in time for the anniversary.

The Toronto Sun reports it will cost about $4,800 to replace. In 2005, Ottawa declared June 23 the National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Terrorism.