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Former Indian Athlete Charged With Killing Mother and Wife in Pennsylvania Home

Former Indian Athlete Charged With Killing Mother and Wife in Pennsylvania Home

  • Iqbal Singh, 62, a former bronze medalist at the Asian Athletics Championship, is charged with first- and third-degree murder and held without bail.

A Pennsylvania man has been charged with first- and third-degree murder, for killing his mother and his wife at their home in Newtown Township. Iqbal Singh, 62, reportedly confessed the murders when he himself called the police a day later, on Aug. 23. An athlete, Singh had won a bronze medal in shot put for India at the 1983 Asian Athletics Championship. According to Singh’s LikedIn profile, he currently drives a taxi in the greater Philadelphia area. Prior to that he worked in construction.

Local news reports say Singh’s confession to the police came after he admitted the crime to his son and daughter, who were said to be vacationing in the Poconos. After unsuccessful attempts to reach their parents on their cell phones, Singh’s children called home, only to learn from their father of their grandmother’s and mother’s murder. News reports say Singh admitted the crime and told his kids to call the police. 

When the police did reach Sing’s home, they found Singh covered in blood, injured. They then found his mother, Nasib Kaur, “lying unresponsive on the first floor with her throat slit,” according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Singh’s wife, Jaspal Kaur, was found upstairs, similarly wounded,” the report said, and added that “both women were pronounced dead at the scene.” Citing court documents, the report said that Singh attempted suicide after allegedly confessing the crime to the police.

Neighbors told local media that Singh was “well known,” and “was often seen walking and meditating in the quiet Newtown Square neighborhood.” However, they added that he didn’t seem his self a day before the killings. “He didn’t seem to be his usual self,” neighbor Susan Davison said. “When he was doing his prayers, I just kind of sensed that he was maybe a little bit off or agitated about something.”

Singh has been reportedly held without bail. Police are investigating the motive behind the killings. Singh had no previous police records, news reports said, citing police records.

Singh originally hails from Hoshiarpur district in Punjab and was employed with Punjab Police. The Press Trust of India reported that Singh did not win a lot of medals “in an era dominated by double Asian Games gold-medallist Bahadur Singh and Balwinder Singh Dhaliwal, who held the national record for a long time.” The Chandigarh-based Dhaliwal, who was close to Singh, told PTI that Singh was “very competitive. I was close to him and he was a gentle and good person.” Dhaliwal said he lost touch with Iqbal after he moved to the U.S., “settling for a life as a taxi driver.”

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Singh’s personal best was 18.77m, also a national record, “which he managed during the Permit Meet in 1988, New Delhi,” according to the PTI report.

“I am pained and shocked,” D. Eashan, who won a shot put bronze in the 1990 Asian Games, told the PTI. “He was a bit quiet but a happy and jovial person. I had shared a lot of time with him and clicked lots of photos together during competition. I cannot imagine what has happened to him.”

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