Press Statement

Punish disrupters of court hearing of Prageeth Eknaligoda disappearance case

27 Jan, 2016

The Free Media Movement condemns in strongest terms the unruly behavior of few extremist Buddhist Monks who tried to disrupt the court hearing of the journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda disappearance case. This disrupting took place on 25th January 2016 at the Homagama Magistrate Court. The leader of the extremist Bodu Bala Sena outfit, Monk Galabodaatthe Gnanasara entered the court by force and shouted in uncivilized language blaming lawyers and court officials for conducting the case of journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda disappearance.

While leaving the court after challenging the Magistrate to arrest him, BBS leader Monk Gnanasara threatened in filthy language Prageeeth’s wife Sandaya Eknaligoda and she has made a complaint to the Homagama police against the threat by Monk Ganasara.

Punishing those who try to disrupt the case of Prageeth Eknakigoda disappearance is a pre-condition for the fair hearing of the case. If the culprits are not punished they will continue to disrupt and influence the court proceedings. Number of Military officers has been charged with abduction and making journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda disappeared. Extremist nationalist groups have mounted a campaign against arresting military officers’ on the ground that they are war heroes.

Journalist Prageeth Eknaligoda disappeared on 24th January, 2010 in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

FMM notes with concern that after the court ordered to remand Monk Gnanasara till 9th February 2016 for contempt of court and other charges on 26th, a group of his supporters, including monks behaved like thugs disrupting court proceedings and preventing prison officials taking Monk Gnanasara to remand prison. Police, which use un-proportionate force against protesting civil groups, did not take action to bring the situation under control and allowed the extremist group to take the upper hand.

FMM would like to reiterate Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s encouraging words condemning the unruly behavior of this violent gang: “Everyone is equal before the law and the law should be enforced on anyone no matter who they were.’’

FMM urge the government and police to take action against the threats directed at Sandaya Eknaligoda, an exemplary campaigner for justice and not to allow any disruption by any extremist group of Prageeth Eknalogoda disappearance case.

Written By

Free Media Movement Free Media Movement

Free Media Movement c/o SLPI, No 96, Kirula Road Colombo 05, Sri Lanka Telephone: +94 777 394 959 Fax: +94 11 257 3279