- The twelve petitions were taken up before a seven-judge bench
By Yoshitha Perera
The twelve Fundamental Rights (FR) petitions filed against former President Maithripala Sirisena, former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and others in connection with the Easter Sunday coordinated terror attack has been postponed till June 07, 08 and 09 by a bench of seven judges of the Supreme Court.
The petitioners allege that fundamental rights were violated by failing to prevent the terrorist attack on April 21, 2019, despite receiving adequate intelligence.
The twelve petitions were taken up before a seven-judge bench comprising Chief Justice Jayantha Jayasuriya and Justices Buwaneka Aluvuhare, Priyantha Jayawardena, L.T.B. Dehideniya, Murdu Fernando, S. Thurairajah and Gamini Amarasekara. The petitions were earlier scheduled to be heard by the Supreme Court for three consecutive days commencing from yesterday (08).
When the petitions were taken up before the seven-bench judge panel, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Priyantha Navana appearing on behalf of the Attorney General (AG) informed the Court that some of the respondents in the petition had been indicted by the final report of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) probing Easter Sunday attack and the AG’s Department would need time to think whether it would appear for these respondents in the future.
ASG Navana further informed the Court that the Department had received the final report of the PCoI probing the Easter Sunday terror attack and it would need at least eight weeks to study the report. The FR petitions have been filed by 12 parties including the Bar Association of Sri Lanka, relatives of those injured and killed in the attack and Catholic priests.
Former President Maithripala Sirisena, former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, former Defense Secretary Hemasiri Fernando, former Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundara, former Chief of State Intelligence Service (SIS) Nilantha Jayawardena and Chief of National Intelligence Sisira Mendis have been named as respondents.
- The petitions were earlier scheduled to be heard by the Supreme Court for three consecutive days commencing from yesterday (08).