Bodu Bala Sena Organisation General Secretary Ven. Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero
The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered to hear two petitions filed against the President Maithripala Sirisena's decision to pardon and release Bodu Bala Sena Organisation General Secretary Ven. Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero on 5 December.
The President on 23 May granted a presidential pardon to the hard-line Buddhist monk, who was serving a six-year jail sentence for contempt of court.
The two petitions filed by Sandya Eknaligoda, wife of missing journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda and the Centre for Policy Alternatives, state that the President's decision to pardon the monk was in violation of the Constitution.
When the petitions were taken up today before a three-judge Supreme Court bench comprising justices Sisira de Abrew, Prasanna Jayawardena and Vijith Malalgoda, the bench ordered that the petition be called on 5 December to affirm the facts.
The petitioners in their petition point out that the Appeal Court sentenced Ven. Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thera to six years rigorous imprisonment for contempt of court. They request the apex court to rule that the President's decision to grant a common pardon to a person serving such a sentence is a violation of the Constitution and through the decision the petitioners' fundamental rights are violated.