An old couple living in a remote village in Sri Lanka is pleading for the mercy of an Indian family to save the life of their son who is facing the gallows in the UAE after being found guilty of murder.
Bandula Indika Ruwan Piyasena (Passport No. M2128426), hailing from Kothalawila Road, Kantharuwa, Madewechchiya in Sri Lanka’s North Central Province, was sentenced to death in the UAE. To avoid the death penalty, he has been ordered to pay Dh1 million as blood money to obtain the pardon of the family of an Indian businessman who was killed by Bandula.
The parents of the Sri Lankan are appealing to the Indian External Affairs Ministry to help get the blood money reduced to a level affordable to the poor family.
“Currently, Bandula is in Sharjah Central Jail and his case (Number 9926/2007) happened seven years ago. He was convicted by the Sharjah Sharia Court of murdering the Indian national. The mother of the convicted man is seeking support to save her son's life,” said a social worker handling the case.
The Sri Lankan prisoner, who is married with a child, had worked for 18 months for Indiset Trading Decoration Company which was owned by the murdered man. He had also brought his wife to the UAE to work as a domestic worker who sometimes worked illegally after her employment contract was cancelled. Indiset Trading Decoration Company was closed down and the murder of the employer followed a dispute with the employer about unpaid salary.
The murder of the Indian employer, who was living with his two children and wife, took place in August 2007, one day before the Sri Lankan couple was planning to return home.
The couple was arrested by Sharjah Police. The court sentenced Bandula to death after convicting him in the murder case. An appeal was made to the Sharjah Shariah Court which reduced the death penalty and the Indian family demanded blood money to pardon him.
“The Sri Lankan family is very poor and cannot afford to pay Dh 1 million in blood money to the victim’s family. Bandula’s aged father is bedridden and his siblings work as daily wage earners. Raising 35 million Sri Lankan rupees is quite impossible for the poor family. Bandula’s mother is seeking support to convince the Indian family to grant pardon to her son or at least to reduce the blood money of Dh1 million,” said William Gois of the Asian Migrants Forum which is working for the welfare of underprivileged migrant workers.
The old Sri Lankan couple does not even know whether the victim’s family is in the UAE or whether they have returned to India. They do not know the Indian family directly, they only know the address of the closed UAE company which operated from a warehouse in Sharjah Industrial Area 12, which was owned by the murdered man.
The family is approaching everyone they know to reach the Indian family to seek pardon for their son or to reduce the blood money. The family is circulating details of the case among social workers with two mobile phone numbers, which are not working currently, belonging to Al Bine Trading Company LLC which operated from the Al Shami Warehouse in Sharjah Industrial Area.
“We hope the Indian family will pardon our son. We are very poor and cannot pay Dh1 million. Killing someone is a grave crime but we hope the wife of the deceased Indian man will be kind enough to pardon our son,” the aged couple said in an open appeal. (Emirates 24/7 News)