Another botched ransom bid

Abductors reported to have demanded Rs. 3 m from victim’s family
By Chris Kamalendran, Pic by M. Noordeen

An eight-year-old girl student who went missing from her school in Batticaloa from last Tuesday was found killed with her body dumped in an abandoned well, police said yesterday.

Satheeskumar Thinuska.

Unconfirmed reports said Satheeskumar Thinuska, a student from the local Koddaimunai Junior Viththiyaalyam had been shot and her body later dumped in the well situated close to her home. According to police the girl was a victim in a suspected ransom bid by unidentified persons, and said they were still trying to find clues that could lead to the arrest of the suspects. The abductors are reported to have demanded three million rupees from the victim’s family, police said.

Investigators did not rule out the involvement of former para-military cadres who are still known to possess firearms and believed to be behind covert extortion rackets and other criminal activities in the Eastern Province.

The victim’s father also disappeared without a trace some two years ago after he was reportedly abducted for questioning by an armed group. The latest incident comes barely a month after a five-year-old girl was abducted and later tortured to death in a botched up ransom attempt in Trincomalee.
Four suspects were later arrested in this connection and were later killed by police while they were attempting to escape from custody.

Meanwhile the TNA yesterday vehemently decried the student’s killing and drew attention to other similar incidents that continue to rock the region and called on the authorities to take immediate action to arrest this dangerous trend.

“Parents are now jittery to send their children to school owing to the fear psychosis and blamed the police and the Government for allowing such a dangerous environment to flourish in the region,” the TNA said in a statement.

The TNA also claimed that another 15-year-old male student identified as Valluvan Mathi had disappeared without trace in the Eravur area. He was a student of Vipulaanantha Viththiyaalayam.
Police are yet to establish his whereabouts.

Yet another abduction

By Sunil Thanthiriaarachchi, our Kalutara corr.

A 10-year-old girl who was allegedly abducted from the Ambalangoda town on Thursday was found unharmed near the Kalutara Bodhiya on Friday, police said yesterday.

They said Pumi Dhanawathie, a student of South Gate International in Ambalangoda was grabbed from the heart of Ambalangoda town and driven away in a white van by her abductors. The unidentified gang had later dumped the girl near the Kalutara Bodhiya.

The girl had later turned up at the Kalutara North police station after which her parents were informed, police said.

The girl told investigators she could identify the abductors at any time and added that she was not harmed or threatened in any manner. Police said no ransom bid was made by the abductors.

Parents keep children at home

Parents in Batticaloa yesterday decided to stop sending their children to school for a week as a mark of protest over the kidnapping and killing of Satheeskumar while calling on the police to arrest the suspects.

The decision to boycott schools was taken following a meeting in Batticaloa town among parents teachers and several civil organizations.

Police investigators believe the suspects were known to the victim. Her father too was abducted two years ago and his whereabouts are still unknown. DIG Edison Gunatillake said the suspects had not been identified yet.

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