The former President Chandrika Kumaratunga has written to the Inspector General of Police urging him to take action against the perpetrators of the Beruwala attack.
Sending a letter to the IGP N.K. Illangakoon through her lawyers, she said that if the IGP fails to take action forthwith she will be compelled to take legal action against the IGP and his subordinates for failure to perform your duties according to law.
According to Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV), this latest attack in Beruwala occurred last Friday around 10.00 pm when former President Kumaratunga and Hirunika Premachandra visited Western Provincial Councillor Mohamed Jemine Marikkar Mohamed’s house for dinner after a public rally in Beruwala. CMEV also reported, the police and the STF on duty had run for cover when the goons started attacking. Damage due to goon attacks includes property and former President Kumaratunga’s vehicle. Opposition Urban Council member Mohamed Mansoor Dalhan who was reportedly injured in the attack and taken to Beruwala base hospital had been refused admission by hospital authorities says the CMEV report. The OPD medical doctor is quoted in the report as saying the police had instructed her not to admit any casualties to the hospital.
We publish below the letter in full;
28th December 2014
Mr. N.K. Illangakoon
The Inspector General of Police
Dear Mr. Illangakoon,
ATTACK ON FORMER PRESIDENT CHANDRIKA BANDARANAIKE KUMARATUNGE AT BERUWALA ON THE 26TH OF DECEMEMBER 2014 BY A MOB LED BY THE CHAIRMAN OF THE BERUWALA URBAN COUNCIL
I write on the instructions of my client Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, the former President of Sri Lanka.
As you are aware my client is one of the key figures in the campaign of the Common Opposition Candidate Hon. Maithripala Sirisena MP, contesting against the incumbent President His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa.
On the night of the 26th of December 2014, my client attended a public meeting at Beruwala and following her address stopped at the residence of Mr. Ifthikar Jameel of Kankanamgoda Road, China Fort, Beruwala. While my client and those accompanying her were in the said house, an unruly mob of about 75 persons had gathered at the opposite house belonging to Marjan Faleel Hadjiar, the former organiser of Beruwala for the United People’s Freedom Alliance. Both Mr. Marjan and his son-in-law Milfer Caffoor, the Chairman of the Beruwala Urban Council had been present and had given leadership to the unruly mob.
I am instructed that the said Milfer Caffoor has inexplicably been given a security detail of six officers of the Special Task Force, who were also present at the scene, displaying their weapons several hours before the arrival of my client and her party at the scene of the crime. The mob hooted and shouted threats and abuse at my client for over half an hour from the house of Mr. Marjan. The STF detail stood outside Marjan’s gate with their weapons, giving protection to the mob.
At this point the OIC of my client’s Security division – C.I. Jagath Chandrakumara, requested the ASP, Beruwala Division for a riot squad, which was sent immediately. They stood around the road and did nothing to control the mob. The mod shouted abuse and threats at my client and at the occupants of the house of Mr. Jameel, obviously with the intention of intimidating them.
When my client and the convoy accompanying her were leaving after dinner, the mob which was inside the residence of Mr. Marjan Faleel Hadjiar hurled bricks and rocks at the vehicle of my client from over the wall. Two vehicles KW-0461 and KV-6807 were damaged from the attack. The said vehicles are those allocated by the State to my client.
It is evident that my client’s vehicle was specifically targeted by the attackers, as several vehicles in which others were travelling were in front and behind her vehicle were not attacked.
It is clear that the rocks were hurled at my client’s car with the deliberate intent of harming her.
Early next morning my client’s security detail has made a complaint to the Cinnamon Gardens Police under reference number CIB II 95/161.
It is regrettable that despite the presence of the ASP of the Division and the OIC of the Police Station no action was taken by the Police either to apprehend the perpetrators or to prevent them from committing acts of violence.
As head of the Police Department you and your officers are under a legal duty to prevent acts of violence and to take action against the perpetrators according to law.
My client notes that it is regrettable that the Police have shown a remarkable lack of independence and impartiality and a lack of will to tackle acts of violence- especially those perpetrated by supporters of President Rajapaksa against the Opposition.
My client apprehends that the failure to take action against her attackers is wilful and is a part of a larger conspiracy to cause her grievous physical harm. This is apparent from the threatening statements made by certain politicians including Cabinet Ministers against my client amounting to physical harm.
You will note that the offences committed by the mob at Beruwala include being members of an unlawful assembly, attempted grievous hurt, criminal assault and criminal intimidation all of which are punishable under the Penal Code. They have also committed mischief on Public Property which is punishable under the Offences against Public Property Act .
Nevertheless she demands that immediate action be taken by you and your subordinates to bring the perpetrators to book. Both Mr. Faleel Hadjiar and Mr. Caffoor were members of an unlawful assembly and cannot escape criminal liability, having acted with the common object of intimidating my client.
If you fail to take action forthwith my client will be compelled to take legal action against you and your subordinates for failure to perform your duties according to law.
My client also wishes to point out that the state of lawlessness is evident when she a former President of Sri Lanka is being subject to such intimidation and physical attacks, which were perpetrated while the police looked on.
My client wishes to stress that she will not be deterred by acts of violence and thuggery and that she has in the past and will in the future, continue to resist state sponsored thuggery.
Paul Ratnayake Associates