Former LTTE member raped and shot - inquest
[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 July 1999, 09:37 GMT]
Kesavan Rajah, a 63 year old shop keeper, said while testifying at the inquest into the death of Ida Hamilitta, 21, that the woman was shot dead by Sri Lanka Army personnel from the Pallimunai SLA camp.
Ida Hamilitta was a former member of the LTTE who was shot dead in her home at 1.30 a.m. on Tuesday morning. According to sources in the area she had close contacts with the Sri Lankan army.
Kesavan Raja, who owns a shop in front of Ida Hamilitta's home, said that he could identify the gunmen as they had been into his shop several times.
The Acting Magistrate of Mannar held the inquest yesterday evening.
The witness said:
"On the particular night some one knocked on the door of my shop. When I opened I saw two people. I recognised that they were from the army sentry at Pallimunai. Two others were hiding nearby, but I could not identify them.
"They took me to Ida's house and wanted me to wake her up. When I knocked on the door, Ida's mother came. One of them hit on my face and I fell down. Then they took off my sarong and tied my hand and face.
"Then they went into the house and pulled out everyone inside. But Ida was not among them. I was lying down and saw what was happening.
"They took me inside the house and I found Ida was inside a room. Then they went out with Ida and ordered the rest to go into the house.
"At this moment Ida's mother managed to escape, but I think, the assailants did not notice it.
"I think Ida was raped. We heard her screaming help, help. I heard her crying.
"Then I heard sounds of firing and it was silent after a while. When we went out we found Ida lying in a pool of blood, half-naked.
"Ida's mother ran away and did not come home until dawn. She was afraid.
"The victim was a member of the Liberation Tigers. She surrendered to the army two months ago. She was living with her parents.
"I have seen that army had been visiting her often.
"I went to the Pallimunai Police to lodge an entry in the morning. The police refused to record my statement.
"The police threatened me that I should not tell others about what had happened."
The Judicial Medical Officer in Mannar, Dr.E.Emmanual Peiris, who carried the post-mortem, said in his testimony that Ida had been raped and that she had been shot at her genitals.
He said there were 18 injuries on her body caused by gunshot and biting. She had also been stabbed on the abdomen the JMO added.
The magistrate ordered the Police to produce the names of SLA personnel who were on duty at the sentry on that night.
He further ordered the Police to produce in the court, the OIC of the Pallimunai police, the police officer who refused to record the statement from the witness and the commander of the Pallimunai SLA camp, on July 20.