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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Kebithigollewa Police assault case: Magistrate orders IGP to get CID to probe incident

Victim undergoing treatment after removal of testicle.

Medawachchiya Magistrate Imesha Dharmadasa yesterday ordered the IGP to hand over all investigations being carried out by the Kebithigollewa Police Crimes Investigation Division against two police officers who allegedly assaulted a 23-year-old man causing him grievous injuries leading to the removal of a testicle, after they checked his vehicle to the CID.

The Magistrate also ordered the Senior DIG in charge of the North Central Province to conduct an investigation into the activities of the Medawachchiya Police OIC with regard to this incident and submit a complete report to Court.

The identification parade regarding this incident was scheduled to be held yesterday, but the young man who was injured in the assault did not appear before the Court as he was receiving treatment at the hospital.

Attorney Bhagya Herath, who appeared for the defense told the Court that since the two Police officers who arrested the youth have been confirmed by the investigations, whether there was a need to bring them for an identification parade.

In response to that, BASL Deputy President Nalinda Indatissa PC stated that an identification parade should be held not to confirm the arrested Police officers but to identify the Police officers who assaulted the two aggrieved youth.

Also, the lawyers who appeared for the aggrieved party emphasized the fact to the Court that the investigations conducted by the Police should be carried out transparently and impartially.

The Police Sergeant and the Constable, who are currently on remand in connection with this incident, were further ordered to be remanded until April 24.

The Anuradhapura Prison Superintendent was also ordered to prepare the suspects for an identification parade.

It was particularly notable that a special group of lawyers, including Sri Lanka Bar Association President Kaushalya Navaratne PC, appeared before the Court as an observation party. Navaratne presenting facts to court said that according to the BASL constitution, the institution is vested with the responsibility to intervene actively for the protection of the rule of law and citizens’ rights.

The President’s Counsel requested the Magistrate to allow BASL to intervene in this case as an observation party. BASL Deputy President Nalinda Indatissa PC, told Court that the assault took place while the driver in question was in Police custody. He also requested Court to include the attendance and exit log books and pocket notebooks of the two Police officers involved in the assault and the other four Police officers who assisted in the raid as case materials.

The President’s Counsel emphasised that the BASL intervenes in such incidents as an observation party with no intention of personally attacking or embarrassing anyone, and BASL’s objective was to protect citizens’ rights and the rule of law.

Horowpothana ASP S.P.Edirisinghe said that all investigations regarding the incident of assault are being carried out in an impartial, formal and transparent manner. ASP Edirisinghe further informed Court that investigations have been completed to some extent by now. Dilisha Sangeeth (23), the driver who was allegedly assaulted by the suspected Police officers, is currently undergoing treatment at the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital and after undergoing surgery, one of his testicles has been removed.

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