By: T. Farook Thajudeen.
Daily Mirror/24th June
Senior journalist J.S. Tissainayagam was further detained yesterday while his counsel insisted that the detention by the TID beyond 90 days was illegal.
Colombo Chief Magistrate Nishantha Hapuarachchi reserved the order for June 30 and ordered the TID to produce Mr. Tissainyagama and the other suspects Vetrivel Jesikheren and Malarmadi Vadivel on that date.
Counsel M. A Sumanthiran appearing for the senior journalist said Emergency
Regulations had allowed the police to detain the suspects on the direction of the IGP only for 90 days. He said thereafter they should be released or produced before a Magistrate.
The Counsel said provisions in the Emergency Regulations clearly stated that the authorities could detain suspects for one year but after 90 days a Magistrate has to direct that the suspects be remanded in prison under fiscal custody. He said these suspects were detained on April 1 complying with the regulations and the 90 day period lapsed on June 5. He said detaining them with the TID thereafter was illegal and the suspects should be detained in prison.
Counsel K. V. Thavarasha appearing for the other two suspects also said they should be detained in prison custody. He said although the Magistrate did not have the power to bail the suspect, he had the authority to detain them in prison.
Senior State Counsel Amendra Seneviratne told court that it could not enlarge the suspects on bail without the Attorney General’s consent. He said the magistrate could detain them in prison only after the conclusion of investigations.
The suspects were detained by the TID alleging that they had aided and abetted the LTTE movement.
Press owner reveals TID assault in tears
The owner of the printing press who was arrested with senior journalist J. Tissanaiyagam said he was assaulted by TID officers for revealing the injuries caused to him by the police to the Judicial Medical Officer
“I’m frightened to go back to the TID”, the suspect Vettrivel Jesiheran said breaking into tears in open court.
Jesiheran who is in remand for more than hundred days under TID detention wept when he was
produced before the Colombo Magistrate and said he was assaulted on the very night he was produced before the JMO for examination.
At this stage his counsel K. V. Thavarasha told court that on the direction of the Magistrate, Jesiheran was produced before the JMO on June 13 for examination of injuries alleged to have been caused by torture at the TID but on the same night he had been tortured again.
The counsel further said he was compelled to complain to the Magistrate as the Supreme Court had directed to inform the Magistrate with regard to any torture in the TID and inform the Supreme Court by way of an affidavit.
Chief Magistrate Nishantha Hapuarachchi at this stage ordered that Jesiheran be produced before the JMO again for examination and report.