Supreme Court to hear Mawbima publisher's FR petition

[TamilNet, Sunday, 25 March 2007, 10:59 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Supreme Court granted leave to Mawbima and Sunday Standard publisher, Mudiyansalage Basnayake, to proceed with his Fundamental Rights (FR) application against his arrest and detention. The three-member bench of the Supreme Court chaired by Chief Justice Sarath N.Silva ordered that the FR application should be mentioned on March 29 to consider the petitioner's plea for interim relief, namely, his release. The Court fixed the FR application for full inquiry on June 4, 2007. The other members of the bench are Justices Raja Fernando and Andrew Somawanse, legal sources said.

Mawbima journalist Munuasamy Parameswary who was detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) since November last year was released on the order of the Supreme Court Thursday.

Mawbima Publisher Mr.Basnayake in his FR petition states that he is the finance director of the Communication and Business Equipment, which was the sole agent for Dialog in the north and east, at the time of his arrest.

The petitioner claimed that no valid reason was given for his arrest and also for the alleged detention order and therefore his continued detention was unlawful, wrongful, against the law, was arbitrarily capricious, and bad in law.

The petitioner claimed Rs: 25 million as compensation and a further compensation of Rs: 25,000 per day until he is released.

The petitioner has cited Gothabaya Rajapakse, Defence Secretary, Sunil S.Sirisena, Additional Defence Secretary, Victor Perera, Inspector General of Police (IGP), Director of Terrorist Investigations Division (TID) and Inspector of Police Abeyasinghe of the TID as the respondents, legal sources said.

When the petition was taken up for inquiry Friday, President Counsel Romesh de Silva brought to the notice of the court, that journalist Parameswary who was taken into custody on November 23 last year and detained for almost four months was released without any charge on the advice of the Attorney General on March 22.

Having heard the submissions by the counsel for the petitioner, the SC granted leave for the petitioner to proceed in respect of the alleged infringement of the fundamental rights of the petitioner under Articles 13, 13(1) and 13(2) of the constitution and directed the Deputy Solicitor General Sanjay Rajaretnam to look into the matter, legal sources said.

22.03.07  Reckless Justice


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