2ND LEAD (Corrections)

Court inquires into Writ Petition regarding disappeared Tamil youth

[TamilNet, Saturday, 30 July 2011, 17:03 GMT]
Sri Lanka’s Court of Appeal Wednesday directed the Sri Lanka Treasury Secretary and the Secretary to the Foreign Affairs Ministry to appear in court on September 7 on a writ application filed by the father of a disappeared Tamil youth, as the Government of Sri Lanka has failed to pay compensation of 3 million rupees recommended by the United Nations Human Rights Committee (UNHRC). The youth, Thevaraja Sarma, was reported missing in Trincomalee on 23 June 1990 after his arrest by the Sri Lanka Army.

The petitioner Shanmugaratna Sarma Jegatheeswara Sarma filed the Writ Petition that the court should order the government to pay the compensation as recommended by the UNHRC.

The petition came up for hearing before two member bench of the Court of Appeal comprising Justice S.Sriskandarajah (President) and Justice Nalin Perera on Wednesday. The petitioner cited Mr.D.B. Jayasundera, Treasury Secretary and Secretary, Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Attorney General as respondents.

The petitioner said in his application that his son Thevaraja Sarma was arrested in 1990 and was reported missing after the arrest. The father made representations to the Sri Lanka President, Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka and several human rights organizations in Sri Lanka.

But no action was taken on his representation. Finally he initiated a ‘communication’ to the UN Human Rights Committee on 25th October 1999.

After inquiry the UNHRC held that the Government of Sri Lanka had violated Articles 7 and 9 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights and instructed the Government of Sri Lanka to pay compensation to the bereaved family. Subsequently, Sri Lanka's Attorney General requested the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) to determine the amount of compensation to be paid. Thereafter the HRCSL recommended to the GOSL to pay a sum of three million rupees as compensation. No action has been taken by the GOSL to pay the compensation to the petitioner.

The petitioner begged court to order the GOSL to pay the compensation without delay.

President Counsel Mr. A.R.Surendran with Attorney-at-Laws V.S.Ganeshalingam, N.Kandeepan, K.Darshini, Jude Dinesh appeared for the petitioner. Deputy Solicitor General Ravindra Fernando appeared for the respondents.


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