Colombo continues to dilly-dally on processing political prisoners‘ cases

[TamilNet, Thursday, 28 July 2016, 23:42 GMT]
SL Attorney General's Department is trying to transfer the cases of Tamil political prisoners to the courts in Colombo where it expects the judges not to dismiss the confessions obtained under torture from the Tamil prisoners, said the family of a 32-year-old Tamil political prisoner, Sulaxan Mathiyarasan. The Tamil political prisoner, detained since 18 May 2009, called off his hunger strike in February this year after SL Attorney General's Department promised action within 14 days. But, the Attorney General's Department has not only failed to live up to the promise, but it has also been trying to postpone and transfer the case away from Vavuniyaa High Court, Sulaxan's mother has complained to media.

Sulaxan hails from Aavarampiddi in Kara'navaay North in Karaveddi, situated 27 km northeast of Jaffna city. The occupying SL military at Vadduvaakal in Mullaiththeevu arrested him on the final day of genocidal slaughter in May 2009. He was illegally detained in Colombo by the so-called Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) until 09 January 2012, when he was transferred to Vavuniyaa Remand Prison.

The charge sheet filed against him was in Sinhala. It was produced on the basis of a confession obtained from Sulaxan under severe torture. When the case (HCV-2491/13) was taken up for hearings in 2012, the Vavuniyaa High Court instructed the authorities to produce a Tamil translation of the charge sheet and the hearing was postponed.

After being detained for almost 7 years, Sulaxan went on a hunger strike on 22 February 2016 demanding his release. His mother, Pushpamala Mathiyarasan had also appealed to SL Prime Minister and to SL Justice Minister 11 days before her son went on hunger strike. On the sixth day of the hunger strike, the SL prison authorities and attorneys under the Attorney General's Department promised action in the SL courts within 14 days and urged Sulaxan to drop his hunger strike.

As his case was built on confession obtained under torture, Sulaxan was expecting the Court to finally dismiss the charge against him. But, there was no action from the SL Attorney General.

When Sulaxan's case was taken up for hearings on 21 June, the SL prosecutors failed to file a fresh charge sheet. The Judge responded by stating that it was totally unacceptable to buy time anymore to file a new charge sheet and said that the hearings would proceed based on the previous charge sheet. The next hearing was set to 20th July.

However, when his case was taken up by the Court this month, the SL prosecutor informed the Court that the SL Attorney General Department was still not ready to proceed with the case and wanted the case to be transferred to Colombo.

Sulaxan's mother said her son was being victimised by the Sri Lankan system. While the political prisoner was under the Sri Lankan jail, his father a Divisional Councillor, had passed away due to illness.

The International Community, which wanted Tamils to come to Vavuniyaa has betrayed Tamils, Ms Mathiyarasan said. “Tamils have been taken for a ride at Geneva and we are again left to the mercy of our oppressors,” she said.


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