16th July 2000

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Colours of love and life

By Kesara Ratnatunga

Vibrant hues blending and flowing over canvas, capturing thoughts and expressing feelings in a visual song of colour and shape. Sometimes deceiving the eye with unreal perspectives and sometimes tempting the mind's eye to see beyond to new perspectives of understanding and feeling. These are Colours of love and lifethe paintings of Noeline Fernando, one of Sri Lanka's most talented and dedicated artists. Discovering her talent at an early age, Noeline went on to study art with such acclaimed figures as Cora Abraham, Laki Senanayake, Narasingham and latterly Richard Gabriel and Tissa Ranasinghe. Under their wing she nurtured her talent and created paintings which have won her distinction and acclaim here and abroad. "Painting is my love and life," says Noeline with a smile, expressing the passion which drives her to create her poetry with brush and palette. Her paintings have no restrictions. She draws inspiration from her own life experiences, places, friends, events...just about anything that captures her mind. Paintings with religious undertones, depictions of different facets of society, the bond within families and her interpretations of the world around us, are abundant among her work. Whatever the theme, the lavish use of colour in her work is an outstanding feature of her semi-abstract style. Noeline holds an exhibition of her work spanning over 20 years, at the Gallery 706, from July 19 to 30 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Law and Citizen

Dr. C. Ananda Grero

Record bar nuisance

Citizens whether rich or poor have to face various problems. A prob lem may arise as a result of a dispute and a citizen may have to seek the assistance of the law to find a solution. Citizen Perera lives in a small town away from Colombo. His house is close to the road that runs through the town. Opposite his house, Samson runs a record bar. His records are played from morning till 10 p.m. in such a manner that the sound is a nuisance not only to Citizen Perera, but also others in the neighbourhood.

One day Citizen Perera politely requested Samson not to play his records in such a manner as to cause a nuisance to residents. Samson laughed at him saying he runs his trade as he wishes and nobody could dictate terms to him.

A complaint made by Citizen Perera to the police too did not bring any relief. Samson continued his business as usual. Perera managed to get a certified copy of his complaint and met an Attorney-at-Law to find out whether there was a legal remedy.

After perusing the complaint and having a lengthy discussion with Citizen Perera, the Attorney requested him to get a few affidavits from other residents to the effect that the playing of records was a nuisance.

The Attorney decided to act under Chapter IX of the Code of Criminal Procedure Act which deals with Public Nuisance. Section 98 empowers a Magistrate after considering a report or information to make a conditional order requesting the person causing such nuisance or obstruction (as the case may be) carrying on a trade or occupation to remove such nuisance or obstruction.

Citizen Perera, through his Attorney filed a case before the Magistrate of the area where he resides, seeking relief under Section 98 (1) of the Code of Criminal Procedure Act. He also submitted to court several affidavits obtained from other residents and the complaint made to the police.

After perusal of the report and the relevant documents and considering the oral submission made by the Attorney, the Magistrate made a conditional order requesting Samson to remove such nuisance for the time being on the receipt of such order. Further, a period of 14 days was given to Samson to appear before the Magistrate's Court and show cause to have the order set aside or modified. The order of the Magistrate was served on Samson through the Officer-in-Charge of the Police where the dispute arose.

On the fourteenth day, the case was called before the Magistrate who issued the order and Samson appeared before him. An Attorney appearing on his behalf informed court that for the time being his client had taken steps to stop the playing of records and asked for time, to show cause, to set aside the conditional order.

Three weeks' time was granted by court and on the due date Samson's lawyer filed an affidavit of his client stating that for quite a long time he carried on his 'record bar' trade or business and played records daily and thereby acquired a right to carry on his trade without any interruption. The Magistrate fixed the matter for inquiry.

On the date of inquiry, both parties (attorneys-at-Law) agreed to make oral submissions to court relying on affidavits filed in the case. Both lawyers made their submissions and Citizen Perera's lawyer cited a case reported in 13 New Law Reports at page 119, Forrest v. Leeff where the Supreme Court held that a person cannot, by long continuance of his practice acquire a right to carry on a business in such a way as to cause a public nuisance. It was further held that if the place where a person carried it on, was at first surrounded by land on which there were no buildings, but houses gradually approach it, so that it becomes a nuisance to the inhabitants, they have a right to have it abated.

The Magistrate after listening to the submissions made by the two Attorneys and considering the affidavits filed in this case, was of the view that Samson carried on his trade in a manner which caused a nuisance to the public. He further held that the respondent Samson could not acquire a right to his trade (record bar) which caused a public nuisance, merely by the fact of long continuance and use of it. The conditional order made by him was made absolute.

Thus Citizen Perera and the other residents were benefited as a consequence of this order made by the Magistrate removing the nuisance so far caused.

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