Sri Lanka Brief
Independence of judiciary

Independence of judiciary

  • Land takeover: SC refuses to give ruling

    Chandani Kirinde The Supreme Court has decided not to make a determination on a bill intended to amend the Town and Country Planning Ordinance on the grounds that it has been placed on the Order Paper of Parliament without complying with the constitutional requirement that it be first referred to the Provincial Councils (PCs) for […]

  • Will the judiciary crack under pressure? .

    It is our right to protest that no government or political party can investigate past decisions and actions of the former Chief Justice or else the next victim will be the incumbent chief justice and the government will take steps to appoint a new person. This has become a threat for judges to act independently. […]

  • Is US threatening action against Lanka at UN in Geneva if presidential pardon is not given to Sarath Fonseka?

    Shamindra Ferdinando The UPFA alleges the US embassy is increasingly interfering in domestic political issues, thereby undermine the government.  The SLFP-led coalition believes that the US is trying to cause a rift in the government over the imprisonment of defeated presidential candidate, former Army Chief, Gen. Sarath Fonseka.The party was responding to US Ambassador Patricia Butenis […]

  • Lawyers express concern over PSC ( on former CJ)

    A group of well-known lawyers have expressed concerns about the government’s move to appoint a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) to probe the conduct of former Chief Justice, Sarath N. Silva.  The signatories to the letter include Attorneys Saliya Peiris, J. C. Weliamuna, Upul Jayasuriya, J. C. Boange, U. R. Wijetunga, Jayantha Dias and K. A. […]

  • Judge Warawewa harassed for judgment: Ranil .

    High Court Judge W. T. M. P. B. Warawewa who acquitted former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka of all charges in the white flag case has already been subjected to harassment, Opposition UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe alleged today. Mr. Wickremesinghe who was addressing a public meeting at Dematagoda said the computer which the High Court Judge […]

  • Fonskea sentenced to three years RI in White Flag case .

    Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka was sentenced to three years RI and fined Rs. 5,000 in the White flag case.  The judgment was divided with Deepali Wijesundara who presided over the High Court Trial-at-bar and judge M.S Razeen finding him guilty for the first of the three counts and Judge W.T. M. P.B.  Warawewa finding […]

  • Former CJ and AG Sarath N Silva – A Mere Mortal

    Vimukthi Yapa It will be no exaggeration to say that, Sarath N. Silva was one of the most controversial figures to have sat in the highest court of law in this country. Considering the prevailing state of affairs, being controversial   alone may not be such a bad thing.Today’s controversy   could be tomorrow’s standard. But there will […]

  • SC dismisses petitions against new bill

    Chitra Weerarathne A five-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court yesterday dismissed the three fundamental Rights petitions challenging the Bill and the subsequent Act to acquire private assets which are underproductive, and underutilized.  The Bench ruled that there was no basis to grant leave to proceed with the application.The petitions were filed by the Ven. Thinyawala Palitha […]

  • Sri Lanka’s highest court under fire in parliament

    (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Supreme Court came under fire in parliament on a debate on an expropriation bill, after the highest court reportedly said it was consistent with the constitution.  The expropriation law came under fire for being deeply flawed and amounting to ad hominem legislation, which is targeted at a specific citizen instead being […]

  • Immunity of the Executive President from Legal Proceedings

     Lakshman Indranath Keerthisinghe Attorney-at-Law The question has often been asked by ordinary citizens: ‘If all persons are equal before the law, why should the Executive President enjoy immunity from legal proceedings under the Constitution?’ An attempt is made in this article to supply an answer to that question without traversing complex legal arguments,The Constitution of Sri […]

  • D-Day Looms For former CJ Sarath N. Silva

    Easwaran RutnamTo say Sarath Nanda Silva was the most controversial Chief Justice ever is an understatement. While most independent institutions in the country were undermined and discredited by successive governments, the Supreme Court managed to maintain its credibility with the people.This was done by judges who stuck to their task of interpreting the law. However, […]

  • TNA MP criticizes SC’s determination of Expropriation Bill

    TNA parliamentarian and Attorney M.A. Sumanthiran says that the manner in which the Supreme Court has determined the Expropriation Bill is a sad indictment on the highest court of the land. Sumanthiran has said in parliament that it was sad to see what the Supreme Court has been reduced to, especially how the court has […]

  • Former CJ On The Mat

    Vimukthi Yapa Seventy six government members of parliament including cabinet ministers and their deputies have signed a motion calling on Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa to appoint a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) to inquire into and report on the allegations of abuse of power, misconduct and/or misbehavior that have been leveled against Sarath N Silva, former Chief Justice.The […]

  • Probe ( against former CJ) has no legal grounds says former CJ

    The attempt to investigate the former Chief Justice (CJ) has no legal basis say Sarath N. De Silva, former chief justice. Media reports say, the speaker had decided to appoint a parliamentary select committee to conduct an official investigation in to alleged abuse of power during De Silva’s tenure as Chief Justice. “I have left […]

  • Stop submitting ‘irrelevant’ evidence

    A court in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, has ordered the police to prevent submitting ‘irrelevant’ evidence with regard to the killing of a presidential advisor. The Colombo magistrate’s court made the order to police criminal investigation division (CID) as the lawyers representing Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra and three others made an objection against police providing […]

  • No Sign Of Progress In Sight -Lasantha Wickrematunge Murder Investigation

    Mandana Ismail Abeywickrema To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history,” US President Barrack Obama during his inauguration speech in 2009. Over two and a half years later, the murder investigation on The Sunday Leader Founding Editor Lasantha Wickrematunge has […]

  • TNA MPs rights application dismissed

    Chitra Weerarathne The Supreme Court yesterday dismissed the fundamental rights violation application, filed by TNA Member of Parliament for the Jaffna District Mavai S. Senathirajah, against the recently gazetted Prevention of Terrorism Act Regulations.Senathirajah challenged the regulations pertaining to the Extension of Application, surrendees care and also the Regulation pertaining to detainees and remandees. The Court said […]

  • Businessman’s FR petition against unlawful arrest, torture hearing on Nov.1

    A fundamental rights (FR) petition filed by a businessman, against his unlawful arrest and torture by the Kadawatha Police, on suspicion of theft, was listed for hearing on November 1.Petitioner Suriyaarachchige Lakshman de Silva and his wife B.M. Ajantha Weerasunghe cited Officer-in-Charge (OIC) Chaminda, OIC Crimes Division Viraj, Sgt. Dissanayake, Crimes Division PC Ratnayaka, all […]

  • Petitions against Army, Police pile up in Jaffna – Grease Yaka Phenomenon

    S.S. Selvanayagam The Supreme Court was inundated with another set of 30 rights violation petitions in addition to the earlier 22 petitions in respect of the alleged ensuing reprisals on the residents by military and police at Navanthurai, Jaffna in the aftermath of the ‘Grease Devil’ phenomenon.When these petitions filed through Attorney-at-Law S.M.M. Samsudeen were […]

  • BASL wants action against cop violence inside court complex

    The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) yesterday demanded an impartial inquiry into an alleged attack by police in the Jaffna Courts complex last Monday (19).A senior spokesperson for the BASL told The Island that those responsible should be brought to justice without delay. The BASL threw its weight behind members of the legal profession […]

  • Jaffna lawyers boycott court sittings

    Lawyers in Jaffna had taken a decision to boycott the sittings of the Courts of Law in the District until such time action was taken to arrest the seven policemen who had allegedly harassed a person who they say was illegally arrested by the police. They made this decision at a meeting held at the […]

  • UK Sets Deadline For Sri Lanka

     Easwaran RutnamThe British government has set a deadline for Sri Lanka to show progress in addressing  concerns of human rights violations committed during the war. British Foreign Secretary William Hague has told the British Foreign Affairs Committee that Sri Lanka has been told it needs to show progress by the end of this year or […]

  • Fonseka’s conviction lacked material – Counsel

    Appeal against CM II conviction and sentence Chitra WeerarathneThe convictions of General Fonseka, by the Court Martial II, were not affirmed by the convening Authority, the President. Hence, there cannot be a consequential sentence, said Romesh de Silva PC, in the Court of Appeal yesterday.Counsel, de Silva, appearing for Fonseka, requested the Court to quash the […]

  • Sri Lanka says Amnesty war probe allegations ‘interference’

    Sri Lanka said Saturday that Amnesty International comments on the island’s probe into its military victory over Tamil rebels, were an “interference” in the country’s sovereignty.Amnesty International on Wednesday said Sri Lanka’s inquiry panel was “flawed at every level” and no substitute for an international war crimes investigation. The human rights watchdog issued a 69-page […]

  • Sri Lanka should meet benchmarks prior to commonwealth games

    At the 2009 CHOGM, Sri Lanka’s candidature for hosting the meeting was deferred from 2011 to 2013 because of concerns about human rights abuses by the Sri Lankan government. While war-time abuses have ended, the situation in Sri Lanka continues to be characterised by serious human rights violations, including assault on democratic institutions, such as […]

  • What earthly reason is there to fault me? – Sarath N Silva former CJ

    I write in reference to the article bearing ‘Ex-CJ should be aware of agreements signed’ published in The Daily Mirror of August 31st, by Minister S. B. Dissanayake, to an interview given by me and published as an “opinion” in your newspaper of 22-08-2011.The response alleges that I am ignorant of, “…….three agreements signed by […]

  • PSC can’t probe my actions: Ex- CJ

    “I retired 2 years ago; I am a free citizen now”L.B.SenaratneFormer Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva said he could not be brought before a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) as he retired from service two years ago and that the President himself had given him a letter of commendation for his distinguished service in the Judiciary […]

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