EA Info

2023.08.04-Easter attacks: Former IGP failed to act on prior intel reports – AG

2023.08.04-Easter attacks: Former IGP failed to act on prior intel reports – AG

The Attorney General informed the Supreme Court yesterday (3) that the former Inspector General of Police Pujith Jayasundara has committed dereliction of duty by not taking action to prevent the 2019 Easter Sunday attack despite receiving prior intelligence information.

Senior Additional Solicitor General Priyantha Navana stated this while representing the Attorney General when two appeal petitions filed challenging the High Court judgment were heard.

Speaking on the petition filed against the release of former Inspector General of Police Pujith Jayasundara, Navana said that the High Court’s decision to free former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando and former Inspector General of Police Pujith Jayasundara was flawed.

He said that the State Intelligence Service had received information regarding the illegal activities of Zaharan Hashim and what his group had been doing for a long time.

He pointed out that if action had been taken on the information received, the terrorist attack could have been prevented and added by not doing so the former Inspector General of Police has committed a dereliction of duty.

The Senior Additional Solicitor General stated that even the names of those who had carried out the bomb attacks had been known earlier.

However, after calling the evidence of the prosecution, without even properly analyzing the evidence, the three-judge bench had proceeded to release the accused, he added.

He also said that it appears that the High Court bench has acted from a preconceived notion regarding this incident.

He requested the Supreme Court to quash the judgement as it is flawed and order the case to be re-examined before a different Bench. Roshan Dehiwala, the lawyer who appeared for the former Inspector General presented facts and stated that the High Court has pronounced the relevant judgement after taking into account the evidence presented. He further said that when receiving intelligence about something, many things have to be considered before taking action. He explained that Easter is an important religious day for the Christians and if information had been given earlier that an attack may happen on that day, there could have been an unnecessary panic and a possible clash among communities.

He pointed out that the risk in this regard was also mentioned in the testimony given by Nilantha Jayawardena before the High Court and added however that the judge is not bound to call all the evidence presented in a High Court hearing.

He said that in considering the evidence presented by the prosecution regarding this case, the defendants were acquitted on the grounds that sufficient evidence was not presented to prove the charges.

The Bench decided to adjourn further consideration of the petitions.

Source-  Daily News



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