27 May, 2022


Shirani Bandaranayake Acquitted

Former Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake was acquitted by the Colombo Chief Magistrate on a case filed by the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption with regard to her failure to declare her assets.

Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake

Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake

She was acquitted after the Commission decided to withdraw the charge sheet against her. The Colombo Chief Magistrate also lifted the travel ban on Bandaranayake and ordered for the immediate release of her passport.

Related posts:

Full Text: Letter By Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake To DG Bribery Commission

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Latest comments

  • 11

    We did everything in our capacity against tyrant MARA regime that persecuted Chief Justice Shirani B.

    In fact, during the height of the lawlessness, I staged a solo Satyagraha campaign in support of Shirani B in front of the Supreme Court Complex. Other lawyers who promised to take part in it simply disappeared in fear of persecution.

    Yet, I am sure that all right-thinking people of this country are absolutely disappointed with the conduct of Shirani B. She was reinstated with so many strings attached and forced to go home within 24 hours, enabling the Executive to appoint a person of their choice to the office.

    It is sad that the Chief Justice betrayed the people who supported her throughout for the second time. She undermined the integrity of the Judiciary by complying with the orders of the executive for peanuts – to claim retirement benefits.

    I’m sure that most readers would agree that this conduct of the Chief Justice is absolutely not acceptable and unpardonable.

    • 1

      I wonder how you could acquit someone without having a trial. An acquittal can be given if the Court found that the evidence was insufficient to convict the accused. When the AG withdraws the charges (probably under political pressure), that can’t be an acquittal, surely?

    • 6

      What you have done is great in protest of how Mrs SB were being treated, and I admire her at least she has had the guts to say enough is enough, which we didn’t see in jokers like her successor Mohan nor predecessor N Silva, and the other so called intellectual like GLP, Dayan etc.

    • 4

      Unfortunately CJ position has been politicized since lately and all the CJs during the last decade have ruined the judiciary. Very unlikely that we will get out of this position since appointment process is flawed.

      CJs to be appointed will either be existing judges of SC or the AG or a senior member from the private bar. Since the appointment process to these positions are flawed and appointed due to political affiliations the position of CJ will always be politically biased.

    • 9

      Naga, I admire your courage in standing up single handedly for Shirani B during those turbulent times, and equally feel ashamed at the rest of the bar association for having such chicken livered constitutions.

      However, I will in the same breath, say that I feel Shirani B was not the icon of integrity that some perceive her to be… she cuddled up to the MR regime, she facilitated the passage of 18A without hinderance and also allowed herself and the position of CJ to be compromised no end in permitting her husband to take a political appointment as chair of a government corporation (SLIC) and the NSB, where, to add further indignity to her position, he was accused of being involved in highly unethical, even bordering on criminal practices.

      Ultimately, it was her lack of the core values and integrity that should go with this very sacrosanct position of CJ (and which she remembered too late) that became her undoing, thereby joining Sarath Silva, her predecessor, and Mohan Pieris, her successor, as the triumvirate of the most unprincipled and thereby highly manipulable CJ-s that Sri Lanka has ever known.

      May there never ever be a repeat occurrence of such scandalous behaviour by future CJ-s.

  • 12

    If MR was in power this verdict would have been entirely different. I am happy that the former CJ has been acquitted of the fabricated charges of the previous gov but this goes to prove that the judiciary was not independent from the executive.

  • 3

    This Attorney General’s investigation was initiated by the previous government and it may have involved specific investigative techniques, including subpoenas for documents or electronic records, witness interviews, compelled oral testimony from one or more individuals or organizations, and consultations with experts as published by news media and politicians. If not where is the credibility ?
    Is this a misconduct, malicious prosecution or a deal for accepting the post of CJ for twenty four hours?
    This prosecution cost millions of rupees from public funds.

  • 6

    She may have escaped on technicalities. The truth is while she enjoyed the good graces of the Rogue regime she willingly played ball with them for years breaking many laws in the Statute Book. She thereby tainted her reputation with questionable property purchases involving her relatives. As charged by many, this lady – from outside the established judicial process for the post of CJ – also is alleged to have helped her unsuccessful husband to gain lucrative State jobs to which he was unqualified. She was the first CJ unable to converse in even average English, brought the judiciary and the high office of CJ to disrepute.


  • 6

    Shirani Bandaranayake

    Let me salute you for facing the might of the Dracula in a calm and collective manner.

    I thought you will be Mahinda’s agent in the judiciary when you were appointed as the CJ.

    But you have proved otherwise.

    You are held high unlike your predecessor – the compromising Sarath De Silva who is continuing to devil dance without realizing that he has become a joker and a real laughing stock.

    I appeal to you to engage without much funfair to strengthen the process of national reconciliation by reaching the war widows to uplift their courage, security and livelihood.

    Wish you well and God bless you.

  • 4

    The return of the Rule of Law in our country as a result of the Ranil-MS alliance on 8th January 2015 without bloodshed should make all Sri lankans celebrate. One can see that courts function properly now.

  • 3

    Those who have watched CNN these couple of days would have seen in pictures,how America mourned the death of Justice Scalia,(an Italian
    immigrant) Judge of USA Supreme court, who died of natural causes . All legislators, including President Barack Obama & his wife, lined up and paid their last respect and a state funeral is planned, though he was a republican elected judge. In contrast, the way former CJ, of Sri Lanka , madam Shirani Banadaranaike was treated by the former regime was appalling. She was not only removed forcefully from her position as CJ, she was also harassed until the formation of “Yahapalana’ govt.

    This is the difference between the two countries and people.This is how
    the Americans and rest of the world respect judiciary.

  • 5

    Congratulations Mrs B. Justics has been done for you, similar to that for FM SF. These two cases prove beyond doubt that in this country the Justice system had been totally hijacked by the former ruler of this country and his extended family, and all the criminal politicians and goons that were working for them.

    Certainly I would like to see a court of foreign judges come to this country, not to deal with American’s fake HR crime investigations, but for the express purpose of restoring justice to every one. I would like everyone in our legal system to be dismissed from service pronto, and recruited back having undergone rehabilitation and a new form of entrance qualification, proving themselves to be clean and impartial. That is the most important pillar that we must rebuild.

    The whole Rajapaksha clan should be held in captivity until they prove themselves that they have been reformatted.

    Don’t know how practical it is to clean up our justice system and law enforcement system. It is high time that this sector is given priority. At present I have no faith in the system as it is, not an iota of confidence.

  • 3

    Shiranee Bandaranayake had to take her secound firing to benefit this acquittal. In the Old King’s Royal government she wrongly picked on Divineguma. That might have put her husband and her in the jail. This time she had learned the lesson. That is, you can’t beat the Sinhala Intellectual Politicians. Always join them.

  • 0

    Shirani Bandaranayake was impeached by the Parliament for the following:

    See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impeachment_of_Shirani_Bandaranayake

    An impeachment motion against Chief Justice Bandaranayake signed by 117 UPFA MPsA was handed to Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa on 1 November 2012, the day after the Supreme Court’s determinations on the Divi Neguma Bill were passed to the president.[43][44] Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa revealed the 14 chargesB against Bandaranayake on 6 November 2012 which included failing to disclose financial interests, abuse of power and disregarding the constitution.[45] Bandaranayake denied the charges.[46]

    See also:

  • 3

    The then UPFA government that enacted 18th Amendment to do away with independent commissions and allow autocratic president unlimited terms could make any fake charges against anyone but the same president decry when a navy officer was arrested for illegally running a business with capital amounting to Rs 630 millions got from abroad without knowing its source.

    That UPFA government also imprisoned General Sareth Fonseka and abducted many journalists and abducted thousands of citizens for not supporting the government or Rajapakse brothers.

    But the electorates could not be fooled and they gave their verdict on 8th January.

  • 4

    You are the IRON LADY who stood against Rajapaksa regime with dignity and pride.

    We salute you not because of you were Chief Justice but because of your majesty.

  • 0

    I agree with most of the commenters here especially Nagananda and Ben Dover.

    This acquittal was long overdue as the charges against SB was politically motivated in the first place.

    However SB must be condemned unreservedly for her initial marriage with the MARA Mafia knowing very well what kind of criminal enterprise the MR government was. She had received many favours from MR and bestowed many favours in return until the marriage turned sour. I for one I am glad that she was pensioned off within a day of her reinstatement. She was not really fit to be CJ.

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