Legal practitioners have called upon the IGP to take immediate steps to ensure the protection of three human rights lawyers – namely Namal Rajapakshe, Manjula Pathiraja and Lakshan Dias who have been continuously victimized by threats and intimidations of unidentified groups as a result of the nature of their work.
The Lawyers Collective issuing a statement has expressed grave concern over the most recent incident of intimidation that Rajapakshe had faced yesterday evening where two unidentified men wearing helmets and jackets had stormed into his office located in Kelaniya, at about 6.20 pm in the evening and had threatened to kill him and Pathiraja if they did not stop appearing for ‘unnecessary cases’.
The men had mentioned particularly cases that they have appeared for including a case against a controversial Buddhist monk. He had made an immediate complaint at the Peliagoda Police station bearing number CIB/III-23/123.
But the Lawyers Collective has pointed out that although steps were taken to lodge police complaints simiarly during the threats levelled against him as well as Pathiraja and Diasinside the Maradana Police station in early August, no action has been taken so far against the perpetrators and neither have they been identified.
Rajapakshe, Pathiraja and Dias are leading human rights activists and lawyers and have often appeared probono in a series of sensitive cases that have challenged the arbitrarry actions of the government as well as Defence authorities.