By Tassie Seneviratne –
The People have lost. Or, it is the People who are continually losing their right to, and their property/ownership of, law and order. This is the muted temper of the grievance now being continually expressed in the many writings and articles that we read in the media. The problem has now reached a point where grievance is reduced to a grumble from high pitch screams earlier; the moaning is now even barely heard. To take this lamentation further, even the term ‘law and order’ is today losing its meaning. The turn of events that we now speak of is perhaps from just about year back. Within the very recent past, therefore, the term, ‘law and order,’ has been fast losing its effect or any meaning it was intended to convey. Disorder, rather than order, rules over all. And the law, or whatever is left of it, is no longer expected to stem the tide of disorder. The facile term ‘law and order’ that long ruled over the topic for over 70 years since independence, is currently in bits and pieces.
It is disorder that now rules over the People. The plague of disorder is currently pervasive. Just a few examples will give the picture. Disappearances and escape of suspects in police custody are now the order of the day. There is no check or restraint on these practices, not from within the Police, not from the Ministry of Police, not from the Parliament, not from the Executive including the AG, not from the Judiciary, not even from the Police Commission, not from the BASL, and not even from the media. Is this an overstatement, or is it the plain truth? And even more significantly, these authorities have their various lame excuses to avoid any responsibility for this breakdown of law and order. Just another instance of failure of order was an assault by police of a third-year law student at a police station in the near vicinity of Colombo, a few days back. This case of misdemeanor is plainly none other than a breakdown of order. These instances are simply not just a breach of discipline. They are as much a total collapse of the system.
The system for order itself is in disarray. The system that is now, or whatever is left of it, is dismantled. This is the reality, in the Parliament, in the Executive, in the Judiciary, in the Police Commission, in the Media and in the BASL. In all of them there is a grave breakdown in their expectations. Very limited allusion is made here due to limits of space. This includes crumbling of the system and in the inter-relationship of the agencies in the Criminal Justice System (CJS). In Parliament there is little issue with this misconduct; their money and power are safe, as it is. To the Executive, their vested interests are not jeopardized by this bad behavior. Interference with the Executive is, on the contrary, for the gain of those who can influence. With the Judiciary, their stake is yet much less when their own power and independence is minus what it should be in their need to dispense justice. Power over the judiciary is now elsewhere. Therefore, contrivances as Nidhas nidhos and Dhos sadhos, have surely drained away the last dregs of justice and so of law for order. Police Commissions have been a continuing failure to serve the people. They have been little more than a bureaucratic overlay. The BASL and the Media have little contribution to make even in the face of blatant violation of rights, in instances as noted above.
The breakdown is therefore to the point that there is now a crisis in the instituted system for law and order. The long-heard call for reform has been but a feeble response to problems coming on since independence. But the predicament experienced within this last year or so is, however, nearly catastrophic in the intensification of the problem for law and order.
The events recounted just above are more than the ordinary. They are extraordinary because of the magnitude of the problems that have been induced, this time round, by a process of intrusion into the workings of all these agencies to undermine their order to crisis proportions. The intent is sinister, the means conceived for which is subversive.
Transformation very recently proposed by Minister of Justice Ali Sabry (MAS) is a dodge if it were not eyewash. For ‘transformation’ in the best sense involves a change in disposition on the part of the relevant parties in the process of law and order. That change is of a moderate vision, whereas the purposes of the measures described above are in fact iconoclastic, extremist and destructive. This is apparently the same urge that drove the ISIS to destruction of the Banyan statues in Afghanistan. In this case, to destroy and overturn the revered and cherished traditional arrangements for law and order.
The crisis is cleverly man-made, for the benefit of some, and possibly by one in the form of a hatchet man. These types are very few and so need to be carefully chosen. These run beneath their ultimate dress of Saville Row cut suits. The threats uttered by him in Parliament to others who may defy, directed with sharp pointed fingers to silence them, and to impress the ‘king’, are aspects of what portends.
Unrestricted power runs through this adversity in the system which is the cause, and is the result, of all that is simply witnessed today. It is idle, then, for the likes of good lawyers and other experts to express their anxious concerns over the media. Unfortunately, their good voice is wasted in the cacophony, drowned out by power and money over all else, throwing aside all, including Rule of Law. These worthy niceties and words are lost to the axe. The moderate Rule of law is in fact now lost to immoderate and precipitate action as at Rathupaswala, with the Thajudeen instance and the regular disappearances and escapes from police custody etc. etc. Power and money will then continue to rule. The projected constitutional reform taunted for 2022 cannot, therefore, do much when the forces such as these are arraigned against law and order.
Law and order for good governance, that may serve the public good, will for long years more have to wade through the mud. The Saville Row cut cannot cover the sarong half tucked up trademark. Power and money will strain the exercise undertaken by prospective reformers in the name for future Constitutional reform.
Forebodings that appear in the horizon with Myanmar musings trumpeting in the air, and, mark my words, will surely march through; unless there be people adequately prepared to resist.
hanchopancha / March 9, 2021
You have got it all wrong. Minister and the Ministry Low and Odour.
hanchopancha / March 9, 2021
It is worth noting:
1. Ministers coordinators never pick up the phone nor respond to emails.
2. AGs Office PABX defective and calls fall out. Never respond to emails.
3. Legal Aid Commission; none of the listed numbers are in operation. No response to emails.
We need Europeans to come and fix things.
Thiha / March 9, 2021
After running thru several articles regarding the Easter Sunday bombing it has become clear to me that there is no law and order in Sir Lanka. The finding to Saharan now appears to have been started After the war ended. His handler during the war was a Muslim intelligence officer named Muthalif. Muthalif was killed in a LTTE attack in Colombo. Thereafter Saharan ceased to be an informer about LTTE activity. After the war ended another Malay intelligence office named Saley who worked under Muthalif and knew of Saharan went to Kathankudy to recruit Saharan. This was the beginning of the Thowfiq Jamaat movement. It was created to recruit and foster Muslim extremists for future activity. At the same time Bodu Bala Sena was also formed under army intelligence. Several other Extremists Buddhist organizations were also created by the SOD. One side did not know about the creating and the funding of the other side. This was kept a secret.
Champa / March 10, 2021
The most important factor is, all four of them; Muthalif, Salley, Sahran and Bodu Bala Sena had the same Master. That is Gotabhaya.
Thiha / March 9, 2021
With this kind of activity what low and ordor do you think ever existed in this miserable hell hole. These are all facts emerging from the 65 out of 87 volumes released of the PCoI commission investigation. In it the commissioners recommended releasing all 87 volumes to the Attorney general so that he can from charges against several key people including the Sirisena. No such thing has happened. Critical information about payments made by army intelligence to these extremists given to the commission by the former PM RW have been expunged from the public record. It is claimed that even a extremist Hindu organization was attempted. The elections in 2015 came too soon for the scoundrel behind these plans to use them effectively to remain in power forever. Confessions obtained from Muslim youth by the PCoI paint a picture of how these youth got motivated to join by seeing the behaviour of Bodu Bala Sena. So the plan worked very well.
Thiha / March 9, 2021
In addition to the initial contact by Sallay with Saharan after the war ended another meeting with an Intelligence official is reported but not investigated. This time it was the bomber who failed to carry out as planned and later blew himself up in a hostel in Dehiwela. The PCoI also investigated Nilantha Jayawardana and confirmed that he wiped his phone and lap top of all the warnings he received from India and all the emails and phone calls he made to Sirisena to inform him of such. This man was promoted and still serves in charge of the police Eastern region. This monster is the man the stupid Buddhists voted into office. Just think about the payback VP got. Now imagine what kind of a payback will come due shortly. Every western intelligence agency and India’s RAW know the above facts and more. No amount of begging and pleading is going to make any of these countries to lend one cent to this scoundrel. Even the Chinese are watering down Sri Lanka’s loan requests and refusing the lend much. The printing press is running at full steam and just barely managing to keep up for now. But not for long.
Ajith / March 9, 2021
“There is no check or restraint on these practices, not from within the Police, not from the Ministry of Police, not from the Parliament, not from the Executive including the AG, not from the Judiciary, not even from the Police Commission, not from the BASL, and not even from the media. Is this an overstatement, or is it the plain truth?”
It is a plain truth. Rajapaksa Family bought everything through their fundamental fake “Buddha teachings” abduction, bribe, cheat, murder, and military violence.
hanchopancha / March 9, 2021
This is an old song being played over and over again and again. What is needed is a campaign by forming a group of those who are the victims with the support of benevolent lawyers and sympathizers and professionals like Mr. Tassie Seneviratne and drive the Nail home.
Champa / March 9, 2021
Ali Sabry is a drunken mouse who gets free booze from Gotabhaya, Mahinda & Basil every so often to spew racial venom against Sinhalese-Buddhists to provoke them.
For over 50 years, the Rajapaksas have successfully concealed their Catholic Malaccan origin by pretending that they were Sinhalese-Buddhists. We must thank Ali Sabry for exposing the Rajapaksas’ true identity.
Mysogynist Gotabhaya’s decision to abolish/downgrade the Ministry of Women’s & Children’s Affairs, failure to bring in new laws to protect women & children as promised, the sudden increase in gender-based violence (typical in Rajapaksa regimes), making a female village teacher in rural Thanamalwila an object of laughter among his Colombo-based male officials, the Rajapaksa sponsored sex-worker and illegal drug industries, the race-based & gender-based discrimination against Sinhalese expatriate workers by denying their right to return and the wanton destruction of forest reserves & forested watersheds are clear examples that the Rajapaksas are not of Sinhalese-Buddhist origin.
The “Basil Rajapaksa-style” LTTE diaspora protest march this year in Geneva is another example.
Mahinda has also proved his duplicity and insincerity by ridiculing the efforts of Sinhalese-Buddhists to protect the critically endangered Crudia zeylanica tree. Now, he and his Minister Johnston Fernando are hell bent on removing the said tree. A tax-evader like Johnston “accusing a tree” for causing financial losses to the government is a joke.