Spy chief rejects Kanishka inquiry commission
Toronto: The head of Canada`s spy agency has virtually rejected a key recommendation of the federal inquiry into the 1985 Air India bombing, which stressed on enhancing powers of the national security adviser.
"The Air India report`s call to hand new authority to the adviser would undermine ministerial responsibility," Canadian Press said, quoting a secret memo to Public Safety Minister Vic Toews, written by Canadian Security Intelligence Service director Dick Fadden.
Fadden said bolstering the role of the adviser–currently a low-profile federal official, would "fundamentally misunderstand" the long-held notion the minister is ultimately accountable for what happens in his portfolio.
"In short, while there is always room for improvement, I believe the report does not fully take into account the measures that have been implemented since 1985, and leads as a result to some unfair and potentially misguided recommendations," he was quoted as saying.
In several instances, the report`s recommendations seem to be based on the premise that simply adding another level of management or dispute resolution early on in an investigation will somehow resolve outstanding legal issues that may arise later, Fadden said in the memo.
In June 1985, Air India flight Kanishka, from Montreal to New Delhi, had exploded minutes before it was to land at London`s Heathrow Airport, killing all 329 people on board, most of whom were Canadians of Indian descent.