Punjabi singer Sidhu Moose Wala was shot dead near Jawaharke village in Mansa district of Punjab, India on Sunday night. The 28-year-old rapper who rose to fame in Brampton, Canada after leaving India was reportedly killed by unidentified assailants.
According to The Times of India, Wala’s success is politically motivated given that the musician had recently immersed himself in Indian politics and also stood for election in Mansa as a member of the Congress party. Two other people were injured in the attack after the assailants peppered them with more than 30 shots. The injured victims were taken to a higher medical institution for treatment.
Moose Wala reportedly drove his Mahindra Thar after leaving Moosa village with his companions to encounter a then unidentified individual. Punjab Police later learned that Moose Wala was to meet with Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to discuss matters regarding his security.
In his Tweet last Sunday, the Chief Minister expressed his shock and sadness at the horrific murder of Moose Wala: “No one involved will be spared. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and his fans around the world. I call on everyone to stay calm.
The attack came just a day after the Punjab government withdrew Moose Wala’s personal security details from the Punjab police along with 400 others. Since becoming involved in politics, the artist, also known behind the scenes as Shubheep Singh Sidhu, has come under heavy criticism for his references to gun violence in his music. In recent years, his performances in Canada have been marred by security issues with the RCMP in Surrey reporting public safety assessment results that forced his act to be shot citing public safety issues. His past performance in Surrey ended in a stab and shots were fired at his event in Calgary.
This week, before his untimely death, ticket sales for his concert at the Pacific Coliseum scheduled for July 23 were suspended. National Pacific Show spokeswoman Laura Ballance said their team was not aware of any imminent security threats related to their show. After consulting with Vancouver police who carried out their regular security assessment on the events, Ballance said his team decided to postpone the initial scheduled ticket delivery instead of having to refund the tickets if the show was canceled.