Rights violation complaints against Police prompt action by IGP
[TamilNet, Sunday, 14 September 2003, 11:31 GMT]
The Sri Lanka’s Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mr.T.E.Anandarajah Sunday in an attempt to curb human rights and fundamental rights abuses in the police service, announced that police officers who are found guilty by the Supreme Court for violating fundamental rights of citizens would be interdicted from service immediately and would be subjected to departmental disciplinary inquiry irrespective of their grade, police sources said.
Human rights activists have complained in several forums held to mark Human Rights Day and seminars on protecting fundamental rights of the people that police officers who were found guilty by the Supreme Court of the country for the violation of the fundamental rights of citizens are still in service after paying fine.
The Police department has resisted from taking action to remove the violators from the service. The rights violators in the Police department are not even subjected to departmental disciplinary inquiry. This climate of impunity has encouraged errand police officers to continue to commit rights violations, human right sources said.
IGP's new measures against the errand officers are prompted by pressure by the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRC) following the increase of deaths of suspects in the custody of the police, sources said.
The IGP has already issued instructions to his deputies (DIG) in provinces that officers-in-charge of police stations would be held responsible in future for the deaths of suspects in police custody.
Reports said that during the past three months at least six suspects had died in police stations and prison custody.
HRC Chairperson Ms Radhika Coomaraswamy met the IGP and requested him to take immediate steps to curb the spate of deaths of suspects in police custody, sources said.
Furthermore the Independent Police Commission set up under the 17th Constitutional Amendment has been requested by the HRC to frame guidelines to take disciplinary action against police officers who were found guilty for fundamental rights violation cases by the country’s Supreme Court, police sources said.