Tamil prisoners file FR petitions in Supreme Court

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 29 May 2007, 10:28 GMT]
Two Tamil civilians arrested by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) on August 11 last year at Muhamaalai in Jaffna district have filed separate Fundamental Rights (FR) applications in the Sri Lanka's Supreme Court Monday seeking the court to declare that their fundamental rights have been violated due to the illegal arrest and detention, and to order their release with appropriate compensation, legal sources said.

Petitioners Thuraisingham Lohenthirakumar, 35, of Chaavakachcheri Sivagnanam Gnanakumar, 24, of I'lavaalai have cited in their FR applications, SLA soldier arrested who them, Kodikamam Police Officer-in Charge, Kankesanthurai Police OIC, OIC of the Terrorist Intelligence Unit, SLA Commander Inspector General of Police, Commissioner of Prisons and Attorney General as respondents.

Petitioners state in their applications that on the day of incident they had been working as the driver and conductor of private sector bus transporting passengers to and from Jaffna and Muhamaalai. There was no prohibited material inside the bus when the SLA arrested them. The bus was also taken into custody by the SLA.

The bus is still in the custody of the SLA. Petitioners were not informed by the SLA the reason for their arrest.

SLA officials obtained their signatures in documents written in Sinhalese and without giving Tamil translation of the document, the petitioners said.

Petitioners further stated that the SLA, Police and Terrorism Intelligent Unit officials treated them inhumanely during interrogation. They were tortured in the Kankesanthurai Police station while being detained. The SLA and police did not inform of their arrest to their relatives.

Petitioners added their fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution have been violated as they were arrested and detained illegally.

Petitioners also stated in their applications that they are the breadwinners of their families and members of their families have been driven abject poverty without any income to run their day-to-day life as they have been in detention for more than nine months.


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