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Lanka's top judge calls for fair play and justice

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

"Justice should not only be done, but should manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done," Bandaranayake said during her first public speech since impeachment proceedings began against her.

She said that no person's rights should be infringed without a fair trial before an impartial and independent tribunal operating according to fair procedure, she said while addressing the annual meeting of the Judges' Association here.

The 54-year-old chief justice had walked out of the parliamentary panel probing the impeachment charges against her calling the process biased and unfair.

The panel found her guilty of three of the 14 charges in the impeachment proceedings against her moved by 117 government parliamentarians.

The three charges were financial impropriety based on non declaration of assets and conflict of interest in a case involving a failed investment company.

She has mounted a legal challenge against the findings of the panel and has called for a fair investigation.

The panel report would be debated in parliament in January and her removal from office would come after President Mahinda Rajapaksa makes an address of parliament.

The opposition and lawyers' groups have called the trial as one pre-judged to find Bandaranayake guilty and remove her from the office.

First Published: Sat, December 22 2012. 21:15 IST