COVID-19 denier Mak Parhar died from drugs, not the coronavirus, B.C. coroner confirms
Outspoken anti-mask activist tested positive for COVID, but it played no role in his death, report says
Outspoken COVID-19 denier and anti-mask activist Mak Parhar tested positive for the virus after his death in 2021, but that is not what killed him, the B.C. Coroners Service has confirmed.
Rather, 48-year-old Parhar died at home from a mix of ethanol and illicit drugs, including fentanyl and cocaine, according to a May 2022 report released to the media on Monday.
When Parhar died in his New Westminster bathroom on Nov. 4, 2021, there was widespread speculation that he was killed by COVID-19, a disease that he claimed did not exist.
A video Parhar shot in the weeks before his death showed him coughing and complaining about being sick but denying he had what he called "CONVID."
"I'm jacked up on extra strength Advil and Tylenol for the last two days. That's the only way I can function," he said in the video.
The day before he died, he posted another video saying he had recently taken ivermectin, an anti-viral drug falsely promoted as a COVID-19 treatment, and felt "40 to 50 per cent better."
A post-mortem COVID test confirmed that Parhar had the disease, but the coroner's report says, "there is no indication this illness played a role in Mr. Parhar's death."
Parhar was a vocal member of the Flat Earth conspiracy community.
He gained notoriety across Canada during the first 1½ years of the pandemic, beginning in March 2020 when the business licence for his Delta yoga studio was revoked after he falsely told clients the coronavirus "cannot survive in the heat" of a hot yoga class.
He was charged later that year under Canada's Quarantine Act when he repeatedly broke the mandatory 14-day self-isolation period and bragged about it after returning from a Flat Earth conference in the U.S. He never made it to trial on those charges, and his final court dates were postponed because of illness.
Parhar filed a lawsuit against the B.C. government alleging that he was a victim of kidnapping and terrorism when he was arrested for breaking quarantine, but the claim was tossed by a judge who called it "patently absurd and nonsensical."
According to the coroner's report, a family member found Parhar lying on the bathroom floor at about 6:30 a.m. on the day of his death.
He was pronounced dead at the scene, where a coroner later found drug paraphernalia, including a syringe, a burnt spoon and a glass pipe.
The report says Parhar didn't have a recent documented history of illicit substance use or hospitalization.