fury of a love unrequited
hope to despair - no one can
that it is Roshani who is in the
By Ranee Mohamed
One week had elapsed, but the tears in the
eyes of the residents of the unspoilt little
town of Makowita, had not dried.
As women spat as they passed the
ramshackle house in which the suspect lived,
the memories of how they thronged there,
crying out both in protest and agony came to
It was a time when Makowita in Jaela
sprung to the limelight for a murder most
foul, of a young girl who was just beginning
to experience the wonder of youth.
It was at about 6 a.m. on Friday, January
18, when Roshani Surangika (23) walked down
a bylane close to this house, a walk that
led to her final destination. For the 25
year old suspect, living in the house had
followed her once again, as he did for the
past several months.
Looking forward to the weekend
Clad in a saree, Roshani Surangika had
been happy and carefree that Friday, for she
had commented to her parents that it was the
last day of the week and hence was looking
forward to some well earned rest during the
But it was on the weekend that she was
prepared to be laid to rest, as her body was
pulled out of the watery grave and her
lifeless body wiped off all the muck from
the toilet pit.
This was what happened to the innocent
eldest child of Viviene Gunasekera and Navin
Wickremasinghe, whom they did not even put
down on the floor when she was a baby.
As officers of the Gampaha police
continued their investigations, they awaited
the test reports Friday to ascertain whether
Roshani Surangika, whose body was without
any underwear, had been raped by the
Angry villagers continued to mourn the
tragedy that had befallen a young woman whom
they all commented 'looked like an angel.'
In a dark hole
But the last moments of Roshani Surangika
were spent in a dark hole where angels would
never dwell. Her body was found several
hours after her death in a toilet pit behind
a house situated opposite a temple in
"We were able to arrest the suspect
the same evening, but it took him a whole
night to tell us the details of the gruesome
act," said Chief Inspector Prabath
Dayananda when contacted by The Sunday
The 25 year old suspect had reportedly
told police that he had repeatedly professed
his love for Roshani but had been rebufffed
and scoffed at by her. "I tried to win
her love for several months," the
accused had reportedly told police.
"On January 18th too, I waited for
her as she made her way to work around 6
a.m. I stopped her and I told her that I
love her and suggested that we get together
and go somewhere to talk about it. But she
not only turned me down but hit me with her
slipper," the suspect had told police.
The suspect had then gone on to elaborate
to police that he had then hit the young
girl and dragged her along the small bylane
to the rear of his house. After assaulting
her, the suspect had reportedly told police
that he had thereafter thrown her into the
As Roshani's body was without any
undergarments police are also suspecting
The suspect in his statement also says
that he had given the mobile phone and a
gold necklace which was in the possession of
Roshani to another female. Police have also
arrested another female with whom the
suspect is believed to be romantically
Meanwhile a heart broken Viviene
Gunasekera who is the mother of this young
girl said that her eldest daughter was the
apple of her eye. "She was an obedient
girl who had many dreams. She always told me
that she will get married when she was 28
years of age and that too to a person of my
choice. We are innocent people who have not
harmed anyone. Why did this happen to my
child?" queried this mother in tears.
"I have brought up my three children
with great difficulty," she cried and
begged that justice be meted out to the
suspect. "Don't let this be another
forgotten case. The man who killed my child
should not be let free for want of
evidence," begged the mother in tears.
Always with a smile
Meanwhile the residents of Makowita went
on to describe the beauty of Roshani and her
winning ways. "It was recently that she
started working at a bank. She had many
plans. Every morning she made her way to the
bank, and she never failed to give a
smile," they recalled.
Roshani's father, Navin Wickremasinghe is
However he is moved to the depths of
despair with the loss of his eldest daughter
who he said is the light of his life.
"On January 18, I received a
telephone call from the bank at about 9 a.m.
asking me whether my daughter had left home
for work. I told them that she left home
early in the morning, for that day too, she
worshipped me and her father and left for
work. I was so worried when I received this
call from the bank. I was restless, and in a
few minutes I called them back again and
asked them whether my beloved daughter had
come to work and they replied in the
negative," recalled Roshani Surangika's
mother, Viviene Gunasekera.
Thereafter the grief-stricken mother had
rushed to the National Hospital in Colombo
and checked in the OPD and in the Accident
Service to see whether her daughter had been
admitted to hospital. Unknown to her, her
child was already in a murky watery grave in
a toilet pit back home in Makowita.
"We looked all over Colombo but I did
not find my daughter. Thereafter I received
information that my daughter has been
murdered and was lying in a toilet pit. It
was the most agonising day of my life,"
recalled Roshani's mother Viviene.
"When I rushed there I saw my daughter
in the toilet pit, she was wearing the same
saree she wore that morning..... when she
left the house, when she kissed me and when
she worshipped me...." said the mother
Meanwhile the younger sister of Roshani
Surangika who is undergoing training at the
Welisara Navy Camp to become a woman sailor
said that she cannot bear the death of her
sister. "My sister said that it was her
dream to see me in navy uniform. She
promised me that she will come on the day I
am passing out just to see me in my
uniform," said sister Kaushalya
"I cannot live without my
sister," cried Kaushalya.
Meanwhile, the accused, a labourer has
said that it had all begun with a verbal
onslaught. He had reportedly told police
that he had caught her by the neck and
dragged her down a small lane that led to
However police believe that he has not
given them the complete picture.
Police acting on a tip off was able to
track down the suspect that same evening.
Police are also questioning an individual
who claims to have been a witness to this
"I had many hopes and dreams for my
beautiful daughter, but they were all
snatched away by one man on Friday morning.
Why did he have to kill my child who I have
struggled to bring up? How could he do this
to her if he loved her?" her mother
continues to cry in anguish.
Chief Inspector Prabath Dayananda and
Crimes OIC IP Hettiarachchi instructed by
SSP Hector Dharmasiri and ASP Edirisuriya
are continuing investigations into the