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US: Two Indian restaurateurs shot dead

Last updated on: December 30, 2007 00:27 IST

The murder of two brothers, Ravinder Kalsi and Parmjit Kalsi, at their hotel in Richmond, California on Thursday has stunned the Indian community in the United States.  


"At around 9 pm on Thursday, two unidentified men came to their hotel, Sahib Indian Restaurant, asking whether it was still open. It was partially closed a few minutes before," the police said.


The killers shot the 30-year-old dead in the doorway. They touched nothing, said nothing, police said. They found 42-year-old Paramjit Kalsi in the kitchen and shot him.


"It does not look like a robbery. It looks like these two guys went in there to kill. That's what worries me, Richmond Detective Sgt. Mitch Peixoto told Contra Costa Times.


Richmond police reviewed surveillance camera footage and looked for witnesses. The killers may be Asian or Latino, police said.


The brothers

had owned the restaurant between Nevin and Barrett avenues for about five years and remodelled it.


"We are shocked. They were young men, very gentle, said Tehal Singh, an in-law of one of the victims.


Their family hails from Patiala in Punjab. Friends fear the killings could be a hate crime. The brothers shared a room in Berkeley for about five years before moving to Richmond.


The attackers did not disturb the cash register and took nothing.


The Kalsis took over the restaurant in 2002. They also owned at least two residential properties in the area, which they renovated in hopes of selling for a profit.


"They were extremely hard-working. They had recently been granted permanent residency here," Richmond City Councilman Harpreet Sandhu said.


Ravinder went to Punjab about two months ago for his engagement.


George Joseph