Toronto: Candian Prime Minister Stephen
Harper on Thursday assured the family members of the victims of the
1984 Air India Kanishka bombing that the government would
respond "positively" to the recommendations made by an inquiry
committee and said compensation would be offered to all.
Harper, who met the families of the victims, mostly
Indian-origin hours after the report was made public, told
them the government would provide compensation to them.
Government spokesman Dimitri Soudas said told the
families at a special meeting that the government would
respond "positively" to recommendations made by the panel
headed by Justice John Major.
In an earlier written response, Harper said his
government launched the inquiry "to bring closure to those who
still grieve and to ensure that measures are taken to prevent
such a tragedy in the future."
"We thank Commissioner Major for his work and once
again extend our deepest sympathies to the families and
friends for the loved ones they lost," the Prime Minister
Major said his report is so important that the
government should also establish an oversight or watchdog body
to ensure his recommendations are implemented.
Inquiry lawyers said the changes would not necessarily
incur "astronomical" costs.
Counsel Mark Freiman said the proposals are not aimed
at creating a new bureaucracy, but "we need to find a higher
level of decision-making" when the legitimate interests of,
say, Canadian Security Intelligence Service and the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police, collide."
He said a "lack of effective decision-making and
information available" was key to the sequence of actions that
failed to prevent the crash.
When the doomed Air India flight crashed off the coast
of Ireland, 329 crew and passengers, mostly Canadian citizens,