Due to lack of public faith in the Police, a special team from the Terrorist Investigations Division is to be deployed to Kandy to round up the remaining suspects involved in the riots that occurred in the Kandy district this month, UNP MP Mujibur Rahuman said yesterday (19 March).
MP Rahuman told the Daily FT that this decision was taken yesterday, during a special meeting held at Temple Trees between Prime Minister Wickremesinghe, Minister of Law and Order Ranjith Madduma Bandara, Attorney General Jayantha Jayasuriya, senior officials of the Government and leaders of the Muslim community.
During the meeting, it had been brought to the attention of the Prime Minister that the Muslim community in Kandy was mistrustful of the Police and other law enforcement officials.
“We urged the Prime Minister to send in a special team to arrest the remaining perpetrators involved in the Kandy riots. The people in Kandy do not trust the Police and the armed forces so we requested that a separate team on the orders of the Prime Minister is sent to Kandy,” MP Rahuman said, adding that the Premier had agreed to the request.
Police Spokesman SP Ruwan Gunasekara told the Daily FT that a special TID team is scheduled to visit Kandy in the coming days to make additional arrests, record statements and gather further evidence.
In addition, MP Rahuman said that a request was also made to prosecute those involved in the riots under the International Convention on Civil & Political Rights (ICCPR) act.
According to a statement released by the Prime Minister’s office, the matter of initiating a social dialog to prevent and avoid future communal disharmony was also discussed at the meeting.
The Prime Minister, in turn, had promised to set up a round of talks between representatives of the Muslim community and the relevant Minister and Government officials, to find a long-term solution and answer to peaceful, sustainable co-existence among the various ethnic communities.
The issue expediting the process of paying compensation was also brought up at the meeting.
The Prime Minister’s Secretary, Deputy IGP Nalaka Silva and Police Spokesman SP Ruwan were also present at the meeting yesterday.