Wedaarachchi claims cop punched son on Expressway

  • Promises to produce son and daughter-in-law before Police today

By Buddhika Samaraweera

Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP Dilip Wedaarachchi has alleged that his son Ravindu Wedaarachchi was punched in the face by a police officer during an incident at the entrance to the Southern Expressway last Wednesday (1), and requested the Police conduct a fair investigation into the complaints lodged by both the Weeraketiya Police officers and himself.

MP Wedaarachchi yesterday (5) lodged a complaint with the Weeraketiya Police, requesting an investigation into the alleged assault on his son by the Police last Wednesday and said that he would produce both his son and daughter-in-law Nethmi Silva before the Weeraketiya Police today (6).

Speaking to the media after the complaint was lodged, he said: “On the day of this incident, the police officers had scolded my son and daughter-in-law in obscene language. Then one of the police officers punched my son in the face while he was in the car. This incident happened when that police officer was trying to pull my son out of the vehicle.”

He said that after the incident, he had tried to lodge a complaint with the Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) and the Superintendent of Police (SP) in charge of the area, but both of them had instructed him to lodge the complaint with the Weeraketiya Police. However, he said that he did not file a complaint with the Weeraketiya Police, as it was the Police station whose officers had been involved in the incident in question. 

“When we spoke to Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police (SDIG) in charge of the Southern Province Ajith Rohana, he told us to lodge a complaint with the ASP, but we did not get a chance to do so, as the ASP refused to accept the complaint. We then lodged a complaint at the Walasmulla Police Station via email on the advice of my lawyer. Copies of the complaint were sent to the Weeraketiya Police and other relevant officials,” claimed MP Wedaarachchi. 

Claiming that the incident in question was due to the actions of the police officers and that the Weeraketiya Police were acting in a “dictatorial” manner with regard to the incident, he urged Inspector General of Police Chandana D. Wickramaratne to fairly investigate both the complaints lodged by the Weeraketiya Police officers and himself. He also said that he would produce his son and daughter-in-law before the Weeraketiya Police by morning today. 

Video footage was circulating on social media showing Ravindu Wedaarachchi and Silva shouting at two policemen at the Dedigama Expressway Entrance. As per the video footage, the policeman had advised the driver to not enter the expressway as it was not safe to travel along with a loaded refrigerator in the cab, but Ravindu Wedaarachchi, who was in the driver’s seat, and Silva, who was inside the vehicle, started scolding the policeman in obscene language. 

However, in a subsequent video released by the MP’s son, or his family, a police officer was seen holding the MP’s son by his collar in an aggressive manner. The policemen in question had subsequently lodged a complaint about this incident with the Weeraketiya Police Station.