Leader Journalist Shot
By Easwaran Rutnam
Faraz Shauketaly, a journalist attached to The Sunday Leader newspaper was shot at by unidentified gunmen at his house in hotel road, Mount Lavinia late on Friday night.
Police media spokesman SSP Priyashantha Jayakody said that the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) was investigating the incident and they were confident of making a breakthrough in the investigations soon.
Mohan Samaranayake, the spokesman for President Mahinda Rajapaksa, said that the President had instructed the police to carry out a comprehensive investigation into the incident.
The attack on the investigative journalist of the newspaper came just weeks after some men had visited his house and asked if he was there in a threatening manner. A domestic in the house had told the men that Shauketaly was away.
Shauketaly was shot on Friday night by three men who had entered his room located on the top floor of his house, which was also a gust house for tourists.
The attack seemed to have been well coordinated as the would-be assassins were well aware of exactly whereabouts of Shauketaly at that time.
Eyewitnesses said they saw three men running away from his room following the shooting incident. Shauketaly received bullet injuries in his neck and was rushed to the Kalubowila Hospital.
A group of foreign tourists who had just checked in a day earlier said they heard a commotion and screams and when they opened the door leading to Shauketaly’s room they found blood all over his body.
“We then realized what had happened and got his car keys and rushed him to hospital,” one tourist said.
Doctors at the Kalubowila hospital said that shrapnel from the bullet had got lodged on his lower neck close to the shoulder.
Shauketaly was later transferred to the Colombo National hospital and was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) yesterday.
Director of the National Hospital Dr. Anil Jayasinghe said that tests were carried out on Shaukatally last morning as the object believed to be part of a bullet was still in his body.
However by last evening the shrapnel had been removed from his body and he was recovering well.
“His condition is stable but we need to observe him and carry out more tests on the object in his body,” Dr. Jayasinghe told The Sunday Leader.
The Mount Lavinia police visited the scene of the crime and also recorded statements from eye witnesses and journalists of the newspaper.