Court directs Respondents to file objections

  • Habeas Corpus application by abducted remand prisoner’s wife
By Telles Anandappa

In the Habeas Corpus application filed in the Court of Appeal, where a remand prisoner was abducted from within the Court premises, a Bench comprising Justices W.L. Ranjith Silva and Nalin Perera directed the respondents to file objections on or before April 27.

The petitioner Subramaniam Ramani, wife of the abducted remand prisoner Velayutham Mathias Chandrapala, cited IGP N.K. Illangakoon, Commander STF, OIC Keselwatte Police, Army Commander Lt. Gen. Jagath Jayasooriya and Commissioner General of Prisons and the Attorney General as respondents.

The petitioner in her application stated that her husband was arrested in Polgahawela on March 29, 2009, and handed over to the Police Narcotics Bureau. Later he was produced before the Wattala Magistrate and remanded. Subsequently, in October 2010 he was indicted in the Colombo High Court for offences punishable under the Drugs Ordinance and subsequently, granted bail in December 2010. She further said that in November 2011, he was arrested again in Nugegoda and was remanded.

The remand prisoner Velayutham was brought to the Colombo High Court on February 13, 2012, where a bail application for his release was pending, and bail was granted. After the case was over, as he was being taken to the prison bus, a group of armed persons in a white van bundled her husband into the van and drove off.

The petitioner Ramani and her daughter were witnesses of the entire incident. The petitioner had then gone to the Keselwatta Police to make a statement which was entertained with the utmost reluctance.
The petitioner claims that the entire incident occurred in the presence of several police personnel, and this could not have happened without the knowledge of the law officers.

Keselwatta Police OIC was present in Court and Senior State Counsel Shavindra Wickrama appeared for the AG, while the rest of the respondents were not represented.

The petitioner is seeking the Court to grant and issue an order directing the respondents to produce her husband before Court, to be dealt with according to law, and to discharge and /or release him according to the law. Shantha Jayawardene instructed by Shantha Pitigala appeared for the petitioner.

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