President Gotabaya Rajapaksa is mobilising a group of pro-Government lawyers to write to the Bar Association of Sri Lanka in order to prevent the professional body from acting to secure the rights of attorney Hejaaz Hizbullah Colombo Telegraph learns.
The lawyers are to draft a letter to counter some of the urgent calls for action by the BASL signed by 200 lawyers on behalf of Hizbullah who has been detained illegally for nearly two weeks.
The BASL has maintained a deafening silence on the illegal arrest and detention of a member of its association apart from an extremely cordial letter handed over to the IGP the day after Hizbullah’s arrest.
Shockingly the BASL has not moved a muscle since to secure Hizbullah’s rights both as an attorney and a citizen of Sri Lanka. The President of the BASL is currently one of Sri Lanka’s top criminal lawyers and a long time teacher of law Kalinga Indatissa PC.
Under Indatissa the BASL became an advocacy arm for the Rajapaksa-led SLPP in the run up to the presidential election in 2019 opposing everything from the MCC grant to the pardon for Royal Park Killer Shramantha Jayamaha who has fled the country and intervening in the fundamental rights applications against the Easter Sunday attacks.
However the Association has been extremely slow to react to situations where its own membership is being targeted by the Gotabaya Rajapaksa administration for harassment and now illegal arrest.
Angered by growing pressure over Hizbullah’s illegal detention both locally and internationally the President has secured support from friendly lawyers who are circulating a counter –letter to the BASL with a spate of accusations against Hejaaz Hizbullah and towing the Government line.
The Lawyer’s family has filed a Habeas Corpus application before the Court of Appeal but no progress has been made so far. (By Chinthika De Silva)