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SYU complains to National Police Commission against SDIG Deshabandu

4 months ago

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The Socialist Youth Union (SYU) filed a complaint with the National Police Commission (NPC) against the police officers responsible for the alleged attack on the protest march held near the Lipton roundabout on 24 September. SYU National Organiser Eranga Gunasekara, National Bhikshu Front Executive Member Ven. Koswatte Mahanama Thera, Attorney Sunil Watagala, SYU Member Nimmi Gerlach, and some of those injured due to the alleged Police assault, participated in the event. Speaking to the media, Watagala said that the complaint was filed against Police officers, and that it was accepted by the Commission. “This attack was illegal. According to the Ministry of Defence notice, we have informed the Police about the rally, and they said that Deans Road in Maradana is a high security zone (HSZ), which is not true.  “The Police and the lawyers had a heated argument during the rally and they opened tear gas fire during which seven got injured. Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police (SDIG) Deshabandu Tennakoon is the main person who was charged with this attack. We are sure that the Police Commission will bring us justice.” Gunasekara said that 84 persons were arrested, and that one is in intensive care at the moment.  “We will not accept any gazette. We would work according to the advice of our lawyers. President Ranil Wickremesinghe cannot stop the young generation who fights against the Government. We have started our fight, and we urge our young generation to walk with us,” he said. “We have not chosen to commit suicide so we will fight against the Government. We condemn the assault by the Police on those who urged justice. They cannot stop us. Until you stop beating us, we will not stop this fight,” said Gerlach, who was also injured during the rally. Meanwhile, defending a controversial return to the wartime use of high security zones (HSZs) in the commercial capital of Colombo, State Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Defence Premitha Bandara Tennakoon said that Police permission must be obtained six hours ahead of any protest marches and demonstrations.  Tennakoon told the media on Monday (26) morning that the security establishment will take legal measures to stop or prevent illegal demonstrations that inconvenience and obstruct everyday life and create a sense of chaos in the country. He stressed however, that the Government accepts and respects the people’s right to protest.  “But no protest should cause obstruction to everyday life or to the economy,” he said.
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