BASL calls for immediate investigation into Kandy building collapse 

Tuesday, 22 September 2020 01:12 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • Writes to Acting IGP calling for investigation into all aspects of incident
  • Claims similar incidents in past have not been thoroughly investigated
  • Asserts BASL will definitely be involved in any pending proceeding 
  • Says Police responsible to conduct proper, adequate investigation if there is a criminal offence committed
  • Calls on Police to take appropriate action in the event of a criminal offense immediately to ensure public confidence is not affected 

The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has written to the Acting Inspector General of Police (IGP) Chandana Wickremaratne, requesting that an immediate investigation be launched into the collapse of a building in Boowelikada in Kandy, in which three persons including a lawyer and her one-and-half month old child were  killed.

“We request you to immediately launch an investigation into this incident and ensure that all aspects of the circumstances are properly and adequately investigated,” BASL President Kalinga Indatissa PC said in the letter.

BASL identified Attorney-at-Law Achala Ekanayake as its member who died in the incident in the early hours of Sunday.

BASL said it is concerned about the incident for a number of reasons, one being the death of one its members in these circumstances, and also equally concerned that even though such incidents have taken place in the past, it is alleged that the investigations are not properly or adequately conducted.

“You would recall that a few years ago a building collapsed in a similar manner in Wellawatte near the Savoy cinema. Unfortunately and strangely there appears to be a trend that no further action was taken by the State bodies after the initial investigations are done,” BASL said.

The Association said that it will definitely be involved in any pending proceeding and pointed out that it is the duty of the Police to conduct a proper and adequate investigation on the question as to whether there is a criminal offence committed.

“If there is gross negligence on the part of any person responsible for the construction or maintenance of this building all aspects need to be investigated. Whether the construction has taken place in accordance with the law and the relevant regulations, whether the necessary approvals have been obtained are some of the matters which require the immediate intervention of the Police,” BASL said.

The Association called on the Police, in the event of a criminal offense, to take appropriate action immediately to ensure that the public confidence is not affected.