TID grills three journalists

The pro-JVP Lanka newspaper’s three journalists who were arrested and detained on Thursday for allegedly photographing a construction belonging to a close relative of President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Deniyaya were handed to the Terrorist Investigation Department (TID) yesterday.

The three reporters are now being questioned by TID sleuths to ascertain their motive behind the photographing of this building, the paper’s Editor Chandana Sirimalwatte said.

In custody: Ravindra Pushpakumara, Shalika Wimalasena and Daya Nettasinghe

He said the police had also seized the journalists’ camera and mobile phones. The TID has also summoned the editor to make a statement.

Mr. Sirimalwatte said the three journalists were picked up while they were working on a story following information that state resources such as vehicles belonging to the ‘Maga neguma’ Project were being used for the construction of a private mansion.

“Hours after the arrest, Minister Meryvn Silva told a state TV channel that there were suspicions the three journalists were involved in a conspiracy to assassinate the President. “In the light of this serious allegation we fear that powerful people are attempting to cook up charges against our colleagues.

This is simply because we exposed abuse of public funds and other irregularities by politicos,” Mr. Sirimalwatte said.

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