|BASL president Wijedasa Rajapaksha speaking to media today|
The Supreme Court today granted leave to proceed with the fundamental rights petition filed by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) seeking a declaration against the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani A. Bandaranayake
The Bench comprising Justices N.G. Amaratunga, Priyasath Dep and Eva Wanasundera granted leave for the alleged infringement of the fundamental right to equality and equal protection of the law. The matter is fixed for hearing on January 21 next year.
The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) in its application said the decision by Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) members to proceed with the inquiry into the charges against the Chief Justice without awaiting the pending interpretation of the Supreme Court was an infringement of fundamental rights.
The petitioners are BASL President Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, Secretary Sanjaya Gamage, Treasurer Rasika Dissanayake and Assistant Secretary Charith Galhena.
Ikram Mohamed PC with the BASL Past Presidents Shibly Aziz, Ananda Wijesekera PC, Upali Gunaratne PC and Ajantha Athukorale appeared for the petitioners.
Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa, PSC Members Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, Nimal Siripala de Silva, A.D. Susil Premajayantha, Rajitha Senaratne, Wimal Weerawansa, Dilan Perera, Neomal Perera, Lakshman Kiriella, John Amaratunga, R. Sampanthan and Vijitha Herath and the Attorney General were cited as respondents. Additional Solicitor General Bimba Tilakaratne appeared for the Attorney General.
The petitioners it was the Supreme Court and not the Parliament which was vested with the sole and exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any question relating to the interpretation of the Constitution.(SSS) (Pix by Pradeep Dilrukshana)