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Lanka court summons Gotabaya over presidential pardon to murder convict

The Sri Lankan Supreme Court issued a notice to Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Thursday over a presidential pardon granted by him to a former lawmaker of his party convicted in a murder case in 2011

sri lanka | rajapaksa | Supreme Court

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

Gotabaya Rajapaksa
The project, costing approximately $500 million, was planned under the Sri Lankan government’s renewable push.

Sri Lanka's ousted President Gotabaya was issued a notice by the on Thursday over a presidential pardon granted by him to a former lawmaker of his party who was convicted in a murder of a party colleague in 2011.

Rajapaksa, who pardoned Duminda Silva-- a former parliamentarian from his Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) party, has been issued a second summons since he left office in July this year.

Silva who was sentenced to death in 2017 for involvement in the 2011 murder of a party colleague and ex-MP, Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra, and four others, was freed in June 2021 after granted him a presidential pardon.

However, the in May this year quashed the pardoning and ordered Silva to be arrested again.

He is expected to appear as a respondent before the on December 16 for the hearing of a fundamental rights petition filed by Premachandra's wife and daughter.

Similarly, in mid-October, the highest court issued a summons to him to appear in court over the 2011 disappearance of two rights activists Lalith Weeraraj and Kugan Murugananthan from the northern province.

The disappearances took place 12 years ago soon after the end of the country's long civil war when was a powerful official at the Defence Ministry under the presidency of his elder brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa.

At the time, he was accused of overseeing abduction squads that whisked away rebel suspects, critical journalists, and activists, many of them never to be seen again.

He has previously denied any wrongdoing.

Rajapaksa, 73, was ousted in a popular uprising against him in July this year following months of street protests that called for his resignation.

He fled to the Maldives in mid-July and announced his resignation from Singapore.

In early September, he returned to the country from Thailand.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Thu, November 24 2022. 14:52 IST