Tilak Karunaratne withdraws petition against MoU
[TamilNet, Sunday, 20 March 2005, 08:27 GMT]
One of the three petitions filed in the Court of Appeal challenging the constitutional validity of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the then Prime Minister Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe and Mr.V.Pirapaharan leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was withdrawn last week, legal sources said.
Three petitions were filed in the Court of Appeal pleading for the cancellation of the MoU on the grounds that it has been signed in violation of the constitution.
Sinhala Buddhist nationalist parties, Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) - the main partner of the current United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government, Sinhala Jathika Sangamaya (SJS) and Sinhala Urumaya (SU) filed these petitions in November 2002.
The petitioners have cited Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe, former ministers in the then UNP government and Mr.Pirapaharan as respondents, legal sources said.
When these petitions came up for inquiry in the Court of Appeal Thursday, Mr.Tilak Karunaratne, one of the three petitioners tendered an application to withdraw his petition filed on behalf of the Sinhala Urumaya. The court allowed his application, legal sources said.
The Court further instructed its Registrar to notice Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe and Mr.Pirapaharan to appear on March 28, legal sources said.
Mr.Tilak Karunaratne entered politics through Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). Later he joined the UNP and become a parliamentarian. He left UNP in 2000 and formed the SU. He later left the party due to the difference of opinion with leading members of Buddhist clergy who currently hold power in the SU.
Karunaratne thereafter joined the main opposition United National Party (UNP), which had signed the MoU when in power with the LTTE leader.
The JHU or Pure Sinhala National Heritage was established by two extreme rightwing outfits —the Sinhala Urumaya (SU) and the Jathika Sangha Sammelanaya (JSS) just prior to the elections in 2004.