Rains raise concerns about Chemmani probe
[TamilNet, Thursday, 26 August 1999, 03:45 GMT]
Investigations on the mass graves of Jaffna civilians arrested and allegedly killed by Sri Lankan security forces in Chemmani might be delayed again until next year due to heavy rains that hit the northern peninsula in the early hours of the morning today according to human rights activists.
They said when the matter was taken up for hearing on July 15, the Jaffna judge M.Ilancheliyan had strongly objected to the state's schedule for starting the investigations at Chemmani from September 6, pointing out that a single day's rain could swamp the whole area and make digging impossible.
The judge had hence urged the Attorney General's department and the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the Police to begin the investigations on the alleged mass graves as early as possible.
The state counsel, however, had produced a report by the director of the Meteorological department in Colombo stating that rains were expected in Jaffna between mid-October and November.
On the basis of this report and problems said to be faced by the CID in preparing for the investigation and digging, the state counsel successfully pleaded with the Judge to fix the dates for August 30 and Sept. 30.
The judge had then agreed to the dates while underscoring his concerns about delaying the investigations.