2 December, 2020

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What A “Democrat” And Should He Go Scot Free ?

By Kusal Perera –

Kusal Perera

That so unlikely an outcome should accrue to a man possessed of such limited talent and so many flaws, and one lacking in a sense of ethics and decency, was one of the bitter ironies of history. – William Thomas Green Morton

This is a majority Sinhala Buddhist society in a country, introduced in song as the “The most noble of all countries in the World” (Loken Uthum Rata Lankawai), where an ex-Chief Justice could get on a platform that’s supposed to campaign for “democracy”(?) and say, “There are many complaints that it was I who was responsible to bring Rajapaksa into power. I admit it since Mahinda Rajapaksa was freed to become President because of this decision by the Supreme Court,” [DM – online ; Tuesday, 16 October, 2012 – 07:00] Then PM Rajapaksa was freed of allegations of misappropriation of Tsunami funds, to quote this man again, “We did this expecting Mahinda Rajapaksa in turn would safeguard the rights of the other people but it is not happening today”. It is for that reason he says, he admits responsibility in Mahinda Rajapaksa becoming President, And this man, a self proclaimed Buddhist preacher, and late entry into advocacy for “democracy” is applauded by the Sinhala audience in this country, for saying it.

As Sarath N. Silva now says, this decision is plain personal and nothing legal. Expecting a person  will be good, will be serving others, safeguarding the rights of other people in freeing a person indicted in a Court of law, is pure wishful thinking that has nothing legal in it for sure. But of course he did coin some legal jargon to make his personal decision look legal. Far worse is what he did to MP Kabir Hasheem. As CJ, he also slammed a torturous penalty on the complainant, Kabir Hasheem. That too now seems was done, to give his personal wish, a judicial colour and some credibility.

Ex-Chief Justice

History of Sri Lanka during the past decade would have been certainly different, IF he did his job right, as people expect a Chief Justice to do. If he did honour that high seat, maintaining its repute, trust and confidence. Sarath N. Silva’s utterances now prove, he had betrayed all that trust, all the confidence and the reputation of that high seat, he was expected to at least maintain, if he could not improve on them.

His personal interest and an uncompromising vindictive ego as a Judge heading the Supreme Court in making decisions is evident beyond doubt, in how he decided upon the Contempt of Court case against Micheal Anthony Fernando. Writing about that indictment, Mumbai High Court (Retd.) Justice, H. Suresh contributing an article on “Contempt” to Asian Human Rights Watch wrote, “….In my view, the imprisonment of Mr Michael Anthony Fernando ordered by the Chief Justice (Sarath N. Silva) of Sri Lanka is without the authority of law. In short, it is illegal (Emphasis added). The Chief Justice has no right to send any one to prison except in accordance with the law. Otherwise, he can only detain a person till the rising of the court.”

Let it be reminded that Fernando was even brutally assaulted while in remand prison and had to be hospitalised, was chained to the bed as a remand prisoner, while CJ Sarath N. Silva sat on judgment over the case in February 2003, while being a respondent in the case. The fundamental norm in the judiciary that “respondents” and judges should not be same, was violated. Such is this man, who was once CJ of this “most noble country of the world” and it goes to prove that he could have very personal reasons in arriving at decisions.

He has to be held responsible and never pardoned for another very serious dent he made in representative democracy that keeps violating the sovereignty of the people. His decision(s) that allowed any “cross over” in parliament to continue as an elected MP, despite his or her political party objecting to his or her continued presence in parliament as a MP, allowed hoards of UNP and SLMC Members of Parliament to jump camp to accept ministerial portfolios in the government. A week ago, when Leader of Opposition Wickramasinghe making a statement in parliament on the independence of the judiciary, took umbrage against former CJ Sarath N. Silva for not being independent, UNP Galle District MP Manisha Nanayakkara, another cross over interrupted to say, he is still MP thanks to CJ Sarath Silva.

The SC decision which allowed crossing over from one side to the other, in effect was to allow the government to “buy” over opposition MPs and at one point, Weerawansa was compelled to say, the parliament is like a horse dealing market. If not for that SC decision, 17 plus MPs from the UNP would not have been able to sit with the government and make themselves Ministers. All those millions of votes that went against the government and for the opposition party before they picked on their preferences, immediately became irrelevant. Allowing such huge cross overs made a mockery of representative democracy and the parliament a legislature with a wholly distorted people’s will.

Whether such a person who had been the sole reason in deforming the people’s verdict in electing a representative parliament of their choice as reflected at an election, a person who claims he is responsible in freeing a person to allow him to contest the presidency and one who violates the fundamental norms of the judiciary to sit on a case while he is a respondent, should be allowed on a platform for democracy, is what those who organise such platforms should decide. If they want to have such an opportunist of high repute on their platform, it would only define what “democracy” they would want, after Rajapaksa.

But what is more important is, whether such persons should be allowed to go free without being challenged both legally and publicly, for breaching social trust, for compromising the integrity and reputation of high office and undermining the independence of the judiciary for possible personnel reasons. It is important too that a sound precedent is created on such issues of Public Interest. At least for the future.

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    Thanks for highlighting the truth. Kusal, not only this he manipulated the law to make his Mistress husband Jayasekera and haressd in the devorce case. He never allowed woman judges or lawyers to go without entertain him lik e Gedara Yanagaman. This man should hung in Galle Face. There are thousands of cases he manuipulated. This was revealed by him since Mahinda Rajapakse not make him the Prime Minister as promised.

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      And now the two Saraths – Silva and Fonseka, Sinhala nationalist racists are in bed together having destroyed and betrayed Buddhism (a religion of ahmsa and nonv-iolence) in Lanka with the Rajapakse dictator they both nurtured and supported some time ago.
      Buddhism in Lanka is being destroyed and has a filthy name today because of power hungry politicians and wanna be politicians like the 2 silvas militarizing the religion and goons in saffron who pretend to be monks, but are reallt uneducated and corrupt thugs..

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      This Bugger Sarath N Silva is thousand times worse than Felix Dias Bandaranayake who started interfering with the Judiciary in this country. He did not allow any Lawyer to take the brief of his estranged wife for Divorce as she could not find a Lawyer to retain. There after he dabbled with Justice to suit his needs. He created this Frankenstien Monster MR who in turn interfered with the Judiciary through the former AG to withdraw the indictment on a murderer Chandana Kathiraaratchi and set him free. Not only this the former AG has bent backwards to violate Justice to appease on many issues. MR again got former AG to withdraw charges against P.B. Jayasundara to be reinstalled after he was convicted by this Supreme Court bench comprising Sarath N Silva. What a mockery of JUSTICE? I believe the entire Country should allow a Special Court to take these matters up again and deal with the three of them, Sarath N Silva, Mr and Former AG Mohan Piris, and punished as a deterent to others and establish Law and Order in this country. This should be priority one of the Majority in this country. Trust me a settlement to the vexed Tamil issue will automatically arise no sooner these issues are addressed.

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    What kind of chief justice is this guy? This is a disgrace to the justice system, man has no ethics. Does he have a law degree?

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    Sarath N Silva also disbarred a senior lawyer for 7 years for “speaking loud” when reading his submission – an unjust punishment.
    The ‘offence’ should have been been heard/judged by another judge,to be fair.
    He has altered the history of sri lanka, for the worse,by his “Hambantota Judgement” and by allowing “Cross Overs”.

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      @justice, facts are a bit twisted here though your sentiments are in the right place! What actually happened was that Elmo Perera, a senior lawyer was suspended for seven years on a motion by Judge Shiranee Tilekewardene and heard by Sarath Silva, a judicial monstrosity. Both are not fit to wear the judicial robe.

      The person who got jailed for speaking loudly in court was Anthony Fernando – on order of Sarath Silva. He was tortured in prison. He withstood all that and refused to apologise to the judicial thug Sarath Silva. There, you have the facts.

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    Does Sarath admit he gave a wrong verdict – No. He says the MR got a
    favourable remedy and thus rose to become King of this most noble
    Country. Will any ex-Chief Justice in this world admit making an
    erroneous judgement?. Sarath only regerts that his verdict served MR winning. Even the present holders of this high post did so in SFs
    case (?) – so what. This is the Democracy we Sihala Buddhist well
    deserve and will keep Voting!! All other actions come under “Foreign
    conspiracy”

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      How could anyyone assume that Sarath N Silva erred in his judgements? He was egoistical arrogant and knew exactly what he was doing. He knew the consequences of his actions and weighed each decision on its merits, the merit being how good he looked in the eyes of his handlers. He was a political parachutist and did as bid by his political masters. You can pontificate until the proverbial cows come home. Nothing will change unless we are will to undo the damage done by him, and to acheive this we need the people to clamour for change. Such change will not come because we have a blinding filial loyalty to politicians

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    Will the Sinhala Buddhist Mahavamsa mindset revise itself at least now?

    It is just as bad to have Gotabhaya Rajapakse in his position spilling venom in all what he says and does. Basil too silently.

    If the Sinhalese cannot see the benefits of federalism not only for the ethnic minorities but for the whole country now it is just distilled hatred and idiocy.

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    “Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us?” – Lord Denning.

    Lord Denning’s rhetorical question used to be entirely relevant when Sarath Nanda Silva was Chief Justice of Sri Lanka. With Sarath Silva taking on the mantle of anti-corruption campaigner-in-chief, it is also relevant now. Silva appearing in this hypocritical guise has the potential to destroy the struggle against corruption in Sri Lanka.
    By Uvindu Kurukulasuriya –
    Read ; https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/corruption-vs-corruption/

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    Here you go MR. Put him in jail for contempt of law.

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    Perhaps it is time Sarath Silva make a trip to US to look for opportunities it seems his thinking very much inline with Obama who wishes that Judge making decisions giving weight circumstance’s and feel of the case than rule of law which Sarath Silva admitting to now. Other question how many times he used this path on deciding cases. Most will call his action simply as un-noble and corruption of the highest order.

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    If a former Chief Justice of a country can get up on a public stage and proclaim openly and without any shame that the Supreme Court of the land under him made a judgement favouring one party because …… “We did this expecting Mahinda Rajapaksa in turn would safeguard the rights of the other people but it is not happening today” ………….

    Then what hope is there for that country. Have we not sunk to the very lowest of depths as a people and a nation?

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    Tsunami funds not in Rajapaksa name, not in government name but in sister in law name and not even in Sri Lanka bank but in a British bank?
    Case must be restarted by muslim member ?
    Lasantha killed for exposing helping Hambantota.

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    great article Kusal. We stupid Sri Lankans allow this clown to preach to us!

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      pandukabaya

      “We stupid Sri Lankans allow this clown to preach to us!”

      At last you are enlightened. So you agree that Tamils and Sinhalese are born stupid. I welcome your conversion to reality or bit of rationality.

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        Of course, I admit that we are all stupid. I have never said otherwise. Why do you say ‘at last?’

        Reality and rationality (a bit or otherwise)can be assessed only by being objective in one’s thinking. I do not like adjectives such as ‘stupid’ normally but perhaps these are fit for our times!

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    Funny isnt it!The same people who clamour for the indipendence of the judiciary are on same platform with a person who not only violated judiciary norms but has the audacity to say so in public.

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    Very interesting and thought provoking article.

    The question now is, while it appears that erroneous, partial or wrongful judgements have been delivered, what can the ordinary public and the legal profession in this country do do about it ot to rectify/remedy the situation ?

    Isn’t there any remedy for miscarriage of (or mishandling of delivery of justice) as explained in this article ? When a decision of the highest court in the land is not in compliance with the fundamental principles of delivery of justice in a democracy, like the respondent sitting in judgement or judge himself says his decision was based not on facts but the expectations, why can not our legal luminaries apply to the court even now for rectification of such glaring misuse of office ?

    Can anybody enlighten the readers on this matter ? Of course we know in one case, a high ranking government official who is currently holding a very high position in the government, was reprimanded, fined and required to give an affidavit undertaking not to take up any government position by the same judge but subsequently went back to the courts and obtained and unprecedented decision whereby the decision of the previous courts was changed.

    Put simply, isn’t there anyway to correct even the landmark blunders ?

    Could somebody explain the technicalities please ?

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    Well ..if the judgment to allow the crossovers was wrong {and i think so too} how come the legal luminaries and the whole host of others who pin point this and other “wrong” judgments of SS are doing nothing about it ?……….. surely a wrong can be righted? and a wrong of this magnitude which erodes the very foundation of democracy should be “righted ” immediately….if however we are are to keep complaining about the govt in power……its nominees on the bench… etc etc….etc…OR can we truthfully say that all avenues to rectify these have been exhausted ?? well if so…then we might as well accept the defeatism that has engulfed us all.. articles such as this alone .. however good {relative} will not get us anywhere will it ?

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      @Shermal, there are no legal luminaries worth talking about. Someone referred to them as ‘lunumiris’ and he was entirely correct!Except that lunumiris is spicy and enjoyable but these wimps are anything but. We need someone of the calibre of Nadesan to stand up to these jokers but these great lawyers are dead and gone.

      True, talking won’t get us anywhere but speaking, writing and discussing the truth will. Someday.

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    Is there any provision in legal system to put this idiot in jail. Shame to hear this man.

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    This man – Sarath N Silva is a damn disgrace to what we know by the word JUSTICE!!! What a pathetic harrangue by an obviously corrupt, crafty, a “man of law” !!! I sincerely hope this man fades into the sunset and not embarrase Sri Lanka anymore. OaO Asithri

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    Sri Lanka has been suffering from the island sickness, Frogs in the well
    People of this country are in dark and oblivion to the changes of the world, This fact is same for the educated mass too. The new world is embracing human rights, children’s rights, Open governance, Transparency,

    We as a nation still can not implement the rule of law in the country.
    Indefinite arrests, Police torture,

    What about the rest?

    The nation has become so selfish that there is no margin for any selflessness, Me, my family. That is all, rotten to the core.

    Kuhaka Samajayakata Deyyange Pihita Na!

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    len- you are insulting President Obama’s intelegence’ you better keep your chief justice guy in Sri Lanka, I don’t think he has any legal knowledge to work anywhere else.

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    This man talking about Supreme Court decisions like a market trader talkin about his goods in the market should be charged for perverting the course of justice.

    Even if there is no provision in law to charge him a precedent must be set to bring him to face trial for the injustice he caused to the litigants and destrying the trust in justice.

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    Speaking of Mahinda, there was a report sometime back that he was involved in a murder case (somewhere in Ratnapura area(?)).

    But he was let off by Ranil when he was Prime Minister.

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    Just for the record, the saying “Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us” is orginally from the Old Testament of the Bible: Exodus 2.14

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    Did Sarath N. Silva in anyway help MR to marry the women he calls his wife?

    I am not in the least interested in tittle tattle. However I understand that the relationship between Sarath and Mahinda goes long way back. How deep was the friendship?

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      Yes, he was the bestman at MR’s wedding from what I have heard. Equally corrupt guys, one and all.

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    I am informed through a very reliable source that for all the Civil work done by using the Forces personnel, the revenue is credited to an account that Shiranthi Rajapaksa handles through the person married to the adopted daughter of MR.

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      May be money goes somewhere to some one. That is how this Rajapaksa regime lives. But there is lots of doubt in defence related money going to First Lady Shirsnthi. That can not be, with strained relationships between in laws. And MR has NO ADOPTED children. Your very reliable source looks like a throw away ketchup.
      More than all that, your comment has no relevance to this article that discusses a complete different topic. Why bring in fabricated stories, when this regime can be any way challenged on their political track record?
      Amaranth

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        Amaranath, for your information MR and Shiranthi have adopted two girls. One girl who runs the Child Care Centre at CARLTON Tangalle, married to a chap from the area. The other is a sponsored child from the War. Carlton is the residence of the Wickremasooriya’s, where Dr. Wickremasooriya had rented the house to MR and family.

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          Amaranath, you say my post has no relevance to the article. Well we are discussing Former CJ a Corrupt Partner of MR who is corrupt as well as your first lady Shiranthi. The Single subject of CORRUPTION, and not about plotting and planning to overthrow.

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          Gamini,
          Owner of the house is not the issue. There is no point in bringing the name of the house and its owner and whether it is rented or not. None of it has anything to do with adoption of a child. You seem to think that would project you as some one who knows a lot about the MR family. Sadly all that info is not privy to you alone and is known to all in this country.
          Fact is, that young lady you are referring to, who is now running the Carlton Montessori, not a “childcare centre” as you say, was not the one who initially handled it after Shiranthi came to Colombo for permanent residence in 1997, when MR was made the Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic resources. This young lady came to be in charge of the Carlton Montessori only in 2004. It is therefore good for you to find out who was responsible for her childhood. Because she wasn’t in Carlton during her childhood.
          And about “sponsoring” a child affected from war, is not “adoption”. You are wittingly or unwittingly mixing up words that have very different meanings.
          Hope you’ll now accept, there are others as well, who also know somethings about the Rajapaksa family.
          Amarnath

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          Amaranath I never claimed that I know MR’s family more than you or anyone else. It is a figment of your imagination. I only said that the money from the civil work of the Forces was handled by the husband of the adopted girl working for Shiranthi. To tell you frankly I do not know this lady who runs the Montessori or the husband. The story was related to me by a close relative of the Husband, how Shiranthi gets the money for her social work. As for the adoption which I was told, I’ll find out the details and post it later.

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      Gamini,
      So this is how comments are made. The very reliable source boils down to some odd character. The hard talk of the adoption of two children will have to be found out and told later! If I did not challenge you, all that would have been undeniable hard “facts” for the reader. So mind your comments hereafter please!
      Amaranth

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    The former CJ should come clean and file an affadavit in court that he manipulated the Helping Hambantota Case and pray that the Judgement be reversed. If he is a true Buddhist he should be prepared to face the consequences of his actions.

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