SL Police express regret for humiliating LTTE activist

[TamilNet, Thursday, 11 September 2003, 20:37 GMT]
Sri Lanka Police officers at Kodikamam and Chunnakam in Jaffna district Thursday openly expressed their regret at the inquiry held at the regional office of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka for the arrest of a Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam political activist, Mr. Nadarajah Premachchandran alias Jegan, at the Muhamalai check point, due to a mix up in identifying the suspect in a crime alleged to have been committed elsewhere in the peninsula, human rights sources said.

The police officials told the Jaffna regional co-ordinator of the HRC, Mr.Ruwan Chandrasekara, that they wanted a person named Jegan for a crime committed in the Chunnakam police area.

The Sri Lanka army and police had arrested the LTTE activist Jegan at Muhamalai checkpoint when he gave his name as Jegan. Later, on inquiry it was found that the LTTE activist was not the person involved in the alleged crime and he was subsequently released, HRC sources said.

The officers in charge of these two police stations were present at the inquiry held by Mr. Chandrasekara into the complaint made by Mr.Premachchandran that he had been arrested, handcuffed and dragged to the Kodikamam police station publicly when he was returning home to Kilinochchi after spending few days' leave in Jaffna town, sources said.

The LTTE activist in his complaint had further said though he identified him as an LTTE activist, the police continued to humiliate him in the presence of the public. Later, the police officials at Kodikamam and Chunnakam had forced him to sign statements written in the Sinhala language and purported to have been made by him, sources said.

The HRC regional co-ordinator told the police officials that they should have first contacted the LTTE political office in Jaffna when Mr.Jegan identified him as a political activist before taking him into custody.

" You have done this to an LTTE activist. What would have happened to an ordinary man?" Mr. Chandrasekara asked the police officials, sources said.

Mr.Imayavan, an official of the Jaffna district LTTE office, was present at the inquiry. The matter was amicably settled as the affected parties accepted the regret tendered by the police officials in the presence of the HRC regional co-ordinator, sources said.

 

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