Friday, February 23, 2007

'There Was No Leak'


Double, Not-So Secret Probation Update, evening of Feb 23, 2007
I have contacted Kim Bolan directly and she has provided additional information about how she came to learn that Mr Bains is Mr. Saini's son-in-law. This info can be found here.

We've got to hand it to Kim Bolan.

After we speculated about the possibility that Ms. Bolan may have been the recipient of a 'leak' which led to her story about the fact that Darshan Singh Saini is Liberal MP Navdeep Bains father-in-law, she, apparently*, left us the following message on the comment thread:

I wrote the story and there was no leak. It was very apparent from sitting through 19 months of the Air India trial who would be the obvious choices for investigative hearings - all the names came out during the evidence at the trial. After the trial, I wrote my book on Air India, called "Loss of Faith: How the Air India Bombers Got Away With Murder" and reviewed documents related to the one Supreme Court challenge of the investigative hearing provision, launched and lost by Satnam Reyat - the wife of the only man convicted.

I have covered this story since 1985 so there are few mysteries or secrets. I first interviewed Darshan SINgh Saini back in 1988. I have a copy of parts of his police statement that came out during the Air India trial. The reason I wrote the story this week is because I just learned (through Sikh community contacts, not POLICE) that Saini was the father-in-law of Bains. I did not know that until very recently. I called up Saini and Bains and they confirmed it. I thought it was relevant.

So don't always look for a political conspiracy. In this case, there isn't one.

Kim Bolan | 02.23.07 - 2:17 am

Which is fair enough, including the smackdown at the end.

So, based on this it would appear that there was no leak from the police and/or (presumably) CSIS.

However, my original speculation over at Mary's place where the discussion actually started, was whether there might be a political component behind the sudden emergence, right here/right now, of the information that forms the linchpin of the story.

Now, Ms. Bolan's statement, while implying that there was no political component, is not entirely clear on this point because the fact that she 'just' learned of the familial connection from 'Sikh community contacts' does not completely close the door on that possibility.

Regardless, we thank Ms. Bolan very much for letting us know where she was coming from in writing the story.

Clearly, if we take the comment at face value, this was a story that was initiated by a very good reporter and, while we have not read her book, we have followed Ms. Bolan's reportage since the mid-80's. We also heard the CBC interview with her earlier this week that made it clear that getting Air India trial story out there has also put her in considerable personal danger.

*Based on the nature and specifics of the comment we assume that it really did come from Ms. Bolan. However, in the absence of a link or email at the end of it we were unable to confirm this with certainty.


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