Welikada prison riot suspects flee

By Ashanthi Warunasuriya

 

Suspects in the Welikada prison riot are leaving the country, sources revealed.

The Sunday Leader newspaper had earlier published reports related to the progress of the investigations into the incident that was widely talked about at the time.

Four years have lapsed since a writ of habeas corpus was sought and accordingly, investigations were resumed to deliver justice to those who were massacred in the riot and their loved ones.

Ensuring justice for the victims of the 2012 Welikada prison riot was one of the pledges given by the present Government as well but with time, it became just a political gimmick and the investigations into the incident eventually lost its momentum.

Evidence given by the witnesses in the case brought to fore names such as Emil Ranjan, former Prisons Commissioner General Dhanasinghe, and Prison Official Indika Sampath. Of them, the latter had left the country. The Sunday Leader contacted Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs Minister D. M. Swaminathan to inquire about the latest development in this regard and he said the investigations were continuing.

“The CID is continuing the investigations and they brief Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe of the latest situation of the investigations. In fact, the investigations show results. The person in question has reportedly left the country. But steps will be taken against him and others according to the law,” the Minister said.

Commenting about former Prisons Commissioner Dhanasinghe, the Minister said he discussed the issue with the former commissioner and he accepted certain facts. “I asked the police to act upon the evidence,” the Minister said.

However, no one has been arrested so far based on the evidence given by the witnesses in the case. The CID said former Magazine Prison Superintendent Emil Ranjan will be arrested very soon.

The Attorney General’s Department says about 80 per cent of the investigation in this regard are now complete and the progress of the investigation have been reported to the Magistrate’s Court. Despite eye witnesses’ evidence that what happened at the prison on the day was a mass murder, not a single perpetrator has been taken into custody to date thus making the incident yet another political drama.

The weapons used to annihilate the detainees have been forwarded to the Government Analyst’s Department but what would happen to the related evidence with the time is yet to be seen. Could a gun barrel be there without corrosion for five years?

Attorney Senaka Perera, who appears for the case, said that the Government has no interest in finding and punishing the culprits of the case.

“Former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is also responsible for the incident. So he should be questioned but that did not happen to date. No point of catching small fish. The whales should be caught. But the government does not take action but uses the case for their political advantage,” he said.

“You cannot just use tear gas. There is an international standard to follow in this regard. Detainees in shells cannot be tear-gassed since they may die. Everyone exits when they feel threats to their lives. It is natural. Those who attempted to escape in this notion were shot dead. The families of eleven people who were shot dead in this way were not provided with compensation. It is unfair. They would not attempt to flee the prison after being there for years. They attempted to get away from the location since it became a death trap for them,” he said.

The Army and the Police have not been given training to handle prison matters. Unlike them, prison officials undergo special training in issues relating to control of prisons. Therefore, it is questionable as to why prison officials acted in this way or under whose orders they handled the situation.

People in numerous levels languish in prisons undergoing many hardships. They should not be subjected to torture, teargas, and finally death. The latest UN report on the subject has pointed out many such incidents. They want the hearing of this case continue. Besides those who were killed in their attempt to flee and those who were unable to fill the documents claiming compensation, the others have already been paid compensations.

8 Comments for “Welikada prison riot suspects flee”

  1. padma

    Looks like a real eye wash and a another drama by & a deal by so called PM RW & MR.

  2. Lima

    KUDU GOTA MAIN SUSPECT AND ORDERED THE KILLING , WHY THIS MURDERER IS BEEN PROTECTED BY PRES SIRISENA . THIS IS THE QUESTION EVERY SRI LANKAN ASKING. WHY NOT GIVE DEATH SENTENCE AND HANG THE SUSPECT

  3. All these Leader’s are playing Snakes And Leaders, they are guarding the Murderers of each others supporters as they come in to power,how many murders were committed during the Previous regime ? and on who’s instructions? why are the main culprits such as Gota the main culprit is not arrested?mainly for the murder of my Great Friend Lasantha Wickramatunge,Pradeep Eknaligoda the Prision Masekker to name a few this Bustard should be hung by his Testicles,for the Killings of so many innocent citizens who spoke about the wrong doings of the MR Rule,what are these rulers Ponna Sira and Ponna Ranil doing where are the promises of January *th 2015? Instead this Wela Gamarala is covering this Murderer and sending him to California and grooming this Bustard to be the next Presidential Candidate.when the CID are ready to arrest him

  4. Sam Fernando

    Thanks to President Sirisena…. not a single criminal will be arrested and to that end will make sure SF is not appointed Minister of Law & Order.

  5. Things are very clear, President is with all the crooks, murderers, swindlers of the national wealth ect. Now the President is becoming very unpopulor & joining MR group, he said he will abolish the PRESIDENT system within 100 days of coming to power, now he has tried to stay as President for One more year after his period of 5 yrs, is over, apart from that he wants to contest in the next Presidential election also for that now he is towing the line with MR,this fool will never get the support of MR because he who betrayed MR after a hopper feast, MR is no fool to to be fooled by this brainless, double tongued, untrustworthy idiot of a President, we will wait and see the fate that will befall this cutthroat President.

  6. Things are very clear, President is with all the crooks, murderers, swindlers of the national wealth ect. Now the President is becoming very unpopulor & joining MR group, he said he will abolish the PRESIDENT system within 100 days of coming to power, now he has tried to stay as President for One more year after his period of 5 yrs, is over, apart from that he wants to contest in the next Presidential election also for that now he is towing the line with MR,this fool will never get the support of MR because he who betrayed MR after a hopper feast, MR is no fool to to be fooled by this brainless, double tongued, untrustworthy idiot of a President, we will wait and see the fate that will befall this cutthroat President.

  7. Buddhist

    This is Yahapalanaya under the very weak President. Its time the President who cannot protect the civilians, who cannot catch thieves and murderers and who protects MPs and Monks who spread racial violence also takes a boat and goes abroad for good.

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