Interdicted HC judge files writ petition seeking prevention of arrest

Thursday, 20 February 2020 00:57 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • CA to take up writ petition today

By S.S. Selvanayagam

The Court of Appeal yesterday ruled that it would today take up the writ application filed by interdicted High Court Judge Gihan Pilapitiya in his personal capacity, seeking the intervention of the Court of Appeal to prevent his imminent arrest.

His writ petition yesterday came up before a bench comprising Justices A.H.M.D Nawaz (CA President) and Arjuna Obeyesekere.

Court ordered that notice be served on the acting IGP C.D. Wickramaratne requesting him to be present in Court today. The petitioner cited the acting IGP and the Attorney General as respondents.

The petitioner states that an officer of the Attorney General’s Department known as the Coordinating Secretary had stated that the Attorney General had directed the petitioner to be arrested.

He maintains that it is unlawful to arrest him.

He asserts that the Attorney General has no power or authority to direct the Police to arrest him.

He argues that the power or authority to arrest him rests solely with the Police officer effecting such a potential arrest.

He states that he is unaware of any offence he is alleged to have committed.

He adds that he is aware that in the Magistrate’s Court of Nugegoda there has been information filed in terms of Section 110, calling upon the Magistrate to investigate the matter.

He states that there is no offence disclosed against him.

In these circumstances, he maintains he cannot be arrested in relation to any conversations recorded between him and Member of Parliament Ranjan Ramanayake.

He states that any decision to arrest him in relation to the said conversation would be incorrect and unlawful.

He states that grave and irreparable harm and damage will be caused to him, the rule of law, the independence of the Judiciary, the public and the judicial process.

He says that he filed his application to safeguard his personal liberty as well as in the interest of preserving the independence of the Judiciary and the integrity, independence and dignity of judicial officers.

He, among other things, is seeking an order from Court to quash the order of the Attorney General to the acting IGP calling for his arrest.

Romesh De Silva PC, instructed by Sanath Wijewardane, appeared for the petitioner. Senior Deputy Solicitor General Milinda Gunetilleke appeared for the acting IGP. Deputy Solicitor General Nerin Pulle appeared for the Attorney General.