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Death of girl at Bathiudeen’s house: Rishad’s wife’s phone records to be probed

2 years ago

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  • Broker’s bank records also under microscope
  • Girl sexually abused for lengthy period, JMO informs court
  • Borella Police – Colombo South Children and Women’s Bureau at the helm
  • Broker, girl’s mother, Bathiudeen’s in-laws grilled
  • NCPA probing whether victim was employed ‘illegally’
  • Labour Dept. to visit girl’s parents to obtain BC copy
BY Buddhika Samaraweera and Pamodi Waravita Colombo Additional Magistrate Rajindra Jayasuriya yesterday (19) ordered the relevant telephone companies to submit the telephone records of parliamentarian Rishad Bathiudeen’s wife to the Borella Police for further investigations into the death of a 16-year-old girl who was allegedly working as a maid at Bathiudeen’s residence. This was after the Borella Police requested the court to issue orders to the relevant telephone companies to provide telephone details of four persons, including Bathiudeen’s wife, her father, and the broker who had brought the girl to Bathiudeen’s house as a maid. Additional Magistrate Jayasuriya also ordered the relevant banks to submit the bank account records of the person who had brought the victim to Bathiudeen’s house to the Borella Police. The girl who had been admitted to Ward 72 of the National Hospital of Sri Lanka (NHSL) on 3 July with burn injuries had died on 15 July while receiving treatment, the Borella Police said. On 16 July, the relevant Judicial Medical Officer (JMO), submitting the postmortem report of the deceased on 16 July, informed Additional Magistrate Jayasuriya that the victim had been seriously sexually abused for a long time. The Borella Police also informed the court on 16 July that they are investigating whether the girl was sexually abused after coming to Bathiudeen’s house or whether it had taken place at her house before arriving at Bathiudeen’s house. After considering the facts, the Additional Magistrate had on 16 July ordered that the body of the deceased be handed over to her brother while ordering the family of the girl and the family of Bathiudeen, for whom the girl worked, to appear before the court on the next day. Meanwhile, multiple investigations have been launched into the incident. Speaking to the media, Police Media Spokesman Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police (SDIG) Ajith Rohana said the Borella Police and the Colombo South Division Children and Women’s Bureau are conducting investigations into the incident. He also said that a statement was to be recorded yesterday (19) from the person who had brought the girl to Bathiudeen’s house. In addition, the Police had on 18 July, according to SDIG Rohana, recorded statements from the victim’s mother and Bathiudeen’s wife’s mother and father. The National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) has also commenced an investigation into the death of the girl. Commenting on this, NCPA Chairman Prof. Muditha Vidanapathirana had told the media that the NCPA hopes to investigate as to whether the child’s labour had been used illegally with regard to this incident. When contacted by The Morning, the Labour Department informed that its officers would be visiting the girl’s parents to record a statement and to obtain a copy of the birth certificate (BC) to clarify her age. “We consider a child labourer as a child who is employed when they are below the age of 16 years. In the case of this girl, the Police have informed us that the girl was 16 years and eight months old when she died. However, we need a copy of the birth certificate to clarify this and we also need clarity as to when she started working at Bathiudeen’s residence,” Commissioner General of Labour Prabath Chandrakeerthi said. A girl from Dayagama, who was working as a maid in the house of MP Bathiudeen in the Bauddhaloka Mawatha area in the Borella Police Division, was admitted to the NHSL on 3 July with burn injuries and died on 15 July. Investigations have revealed that the girl was brought to the house in October 2020 and was 15 years and 11 months old when she was brought there. MP Bathiudeen, who was in the custody of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), was hospitalised on 17 July after informing CID officers that he is indisposed. Thereby, MP Bathiudeen had been taken to the outpatient department of the NHSL. Upon being examined by doctors, the parliamentarian was admitted to the emergency treatment unit (ETU) of the hospital. He was arrested on 24 April and is being detained for 90 days by the CID under the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act in connection with his alleged involvement in the Easter Sunday terror attacks.

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