Thank you, Mr. Chair.
To the witnesses, thank you for appearing.
When we get to the stage where we hear from victims, I usually need to speak to my constituents through this committee and to the victims, as well as ask the witnesses questions. I've heard from previous and current witnesses about all the rights we have as individuals in this country, but one of the primary rights we have in this country—the first right we have in this country—is the right to life. Terrorists deprive people, as we heard from the first witnesses, of the right to life. Not only do they deprive them of the right to life, but they deprive victims of the right of association with the people who are no longer on this earth.
As for what we are here discussing and talking about, constantly over the six years that I've been on this committee we have heard from various groups of civil libertarians, who have never ever, to my knowledge, agreed with the vast majority of the legislation that this government has brought in. They will placate us by saying that they agree with the fundamentals, but in particular, no, this is not quite good, they say.
But when we talk about the current witnesses, I heard very strongly from Mr. Gupta that he hears them talk about the people who have been incarcerated, at a cost to our society, he says, of $100,000 to $140,000 a year—I think he said $60,000 and someone corrected him. Yet he says that all through the Air India event he was not aware of anybody from a civil libertarian group coming to the victims. There were some 300 people killed, but the relatives left on the earth to mourn their loss never heard of civil libertarians wanting to take up the fight for their rights.
We also heard today from the witnesses that we should be concentrating on rehabilitation. Well, actually, this particular legislation offers an opportunity for rehabilitation, in that if a mother, relative, friend, or citizen sees someone who may be going to commit a terrorist offence, they can go before the hearing, and there is a recognizance built in for the people at home. There can be a rehabilitative part of the recognizance, so in actual fact, this legislation does have built into it an ability to rehabilitate.
How long do I have, Mr. Chair?