A Supreme Court bench presided over by Chief Justice K. Sripavan yesterday issued notice on former President Mahinda Rajapaksa returnable on March 31.
The other Judges comprised, Justices Priyasath Dep and Eva Wanasundara.
The SC issued notice after having considered a fundamental rights petition filed by Peratugami Party Leader Duminda Nawagamuwa.
He alleged that during the period of the Presidential Election and in the early hours of January 9, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa has violated the Provisions of the Civil Security Act by stationing teams of security personnel belonging to the three Armed Forces. The petitioner in his petition further stated that the President as the Head of the Armed Forces has the powers to station Armed Forces in various parts of the country only if there is a likelihood of an emergence of uneasiness causing trouble to the public.
The nature of the uneasiness or trouble should be found, to be a difficult task for the Police to control by itself. But when there was no such a situation in the coutry, the former President had placed members of the three Armed Forces during the period of the Presidential Election and on January 9. It is a violation of the provision of the Public Security Act, the petitioner said in his petition. The Petitioner has prayed Court to make a pronouncement that the said placing of the Armed Forces was a violation of the Civil Security Act and a breach of the Fundamental Rights of the citizens.
Appearing before Court on behalf of the Attorney General, State Counsel Avanthi Perera informed Court that Solicitor General Suhada Gamlath will appear in Court on behalf of the Attorney General in future proceedings of the case, but he was absent from Court yesterday due personal reasons. And pleaded the Courts to fix another date to call the case.
As Attorney-at-Law Viran Korea appearing for the petitioner did not raise objections to the request and informed Court that the notice in respect of the petition was issued only to the Attorney General. The Court then decided to consider the petition after sending notice to other respondents referred to in the petition by the petitioner.