The Parole Board of Canada has extended Surrey wife killer Mukhtiar Singh Panghali’s day parole for another six months.
Panghali, now 51, strangled his pregnant wife of nine years Manjit Panghali, 31, to death on Oct. 18, 2006 after she’d returned home from a prenatal yoga class, staged the discovery of her car in Whalley, burned her body on a remote beach along DeltaPort causeway in South Delta and then delayed for as long as he could to lodge a missing persons complaint with the Surrey RCMP.
He was first granted day parole for six months on July 25, 2022 and then once again on Jan. 6, 2023.
Both he and his wife were Surrey school teachers. He taught physics at Princess Margaret Secondary and she taught at North Ridge Elementary. She was four months pregnant and their daughter was three years old at the time of her murder.
Panghali was found guilty of second-degree murder and interfering with a dead body, following a trial in B.C. Supreme Court in New Westminster in 2010, and was sentenced to life in prison with no eligibility to apply for parole until after he’d served 11 years. He got four years credit for time served while awaiting trial, otherwise it would have been 15 years.
The parole board rendered its latest decision on July 25.
“While there is no Victim Impact Statement on file, your case management team (CMT) indicate that your actions devastated the lives of the victim’s family including your own daughter, tore your family apart, and shook an entire community,” the board’s document notes. “You cut not only your wife’s life short, but also your unborn child’s life. There is clear harm experienced by the victim’s family who also include your own daughter and the grief and loss they will continuously endure.”
Among conditions he must abide by, Panghali is not to have any contact with the “biological” family members of his victim, including his daughter, without securing written permission of his parole supervisor.
“You report that you have spent the last 15 years of your life unlearning your maladaptive coping skills and “old world” attitudes in order to learn and internalize equalness in relationships, needing open and honest communication, and appropriate boundaries with partners,” the board noted.
The document states that prior to his wife’s murder, “tension escalated” between the couple when he wanted his parents to move into their Cloverdale home against her wishes. “You took this as an insult to your family and your authority. File information informs that the marriage did include allegations of violence and abuse.”
Further, the parole board found, “You have learnt and demonstrated that you can effectively solve problems that you admit you did not do in your marriage. You recognize how your cultural thinking around females was what ultimately led you to commit your crime. You have worked to develop healthy beliefs and attitudes regarding intimate relationships. The facilitator noted you are accountable for the choices you make.”
The board did not disclose where Panghali is residing.
“Looking at your file, it is obvious that you have made many gains and have shown growth during periods of day parole,” the parole board determined.