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Exhuming remains of those killed in 2019 Sainthamaruthu blast begins

27 Apr 2022

Exhumation of the remains of those who were killed in the 2019 bomb explosion in Sainthamaruthu commenced this morning (April 27). The Kalmunai Magistrate’s Court yesterday granted permission to unearth the remains of the deceased for re-examination of DNA. Accordingly, the remains buried at the Ampara cemetery are being exhumed in the presence of the Ampara magistrate and the participation of the Judicial Medical Officer (JMO) and other police officers who were involved in the initial investigations, as well as the government analysts. By re-examining the DNA, the investigators intend to find out whether the remains of Pulasthini Mahendran alias Sara Jasmine, a converted Islamic extremist and part of Zahran Hashim’s terror group, are among those who died inside the Sainthamaruthu safe house raided on the 26th of April 2019. Sara Jasmine is the wife of Atchchi Muhammadu Muhammadu Hasthun, the attacker who targeted the Katuwapitiya St. Sebastian Church in the string of bomb blasts on the 21st of April in 2019. Days after the 2019 Easter Sunday terror attacks, several including children were killed in a bomb explosion inside a house at Sainthamaruthu in Kalmunai on the 26th of April. The bomb was detonated by one of the brothers of Zahran Hashim, identified as Mohamed Rilwan. Although it was observed during investigations that a total of 17 people had died in the explosion, none of the DNA samples from the bodies of the deceased had matched the sample from Pulasthini’s mother.

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