Navarathna Mudiyanselage Nuwan Mahesh Premathilaka is a 20 years old unmarried youth from Rabavava, Ihala Puliyankulama, Puttalam.
On 10.08.2010, at around 11.00 am in the morning, when Nuwan was on his way to meet his elder sister who works in the free trade zone, Katunayaka met two policemen attached to Saliyawewa police while just he reached the 17th mile post on the Anuradapura road to get onto a bus. The two policemen told him to accompany them to the police station to record a confession from him. When Nuwan asked them as to what was the reason, however they did not disclose it.
Later, one policeman was identified as police constable bearing number 61612 and the others were identified at the identification parade held by the SSP of Puttalam.
Two policemen handcuffed and took him to the Saliyavava police station, placing him in between them on the center of the motorcycle in which they arrived there.
No sooner they arrived to the police station; they took him to the crime division and made him to sit on a bench until the arrival of the big gentleman.
At 12.00 in the mid-night, sub inspector Rajendra called Nuwan to his office room and asked him, uttering filth, as to how much gold he had collected. In the mean time, two policemen in civilian clothes gave the SI Rajendra a hoe (mamotee) stick (handle).
SI Rajendra forced him to remove his clothes, threatening him that if he would not do it voluntarily, then they themselves would do it. Nuwan removed his clothes. They made him fully naked. Two cops who brought the hoe (mamotee) stick held his two hands and moved him close to a wall.
SI Rajendra hit on his buttock using the hoe stick while blaming him in filth. This assault was continued for over half an hour.
After that, they told Nuwan to get dressed and took him to a room behind the police station. It looked like a rest room where there were beds; the kitchen was next to it. They tied Nuwan to a leg of a bed using handcuffs; Nuwan was left to sit on the floor.
He was not given food or water throughout the night.
The following day, at 5.00 am, in the early morning he was awakened by three police personals including Rajendra, handcuffs were removed and once again SI Rajendra hit hard on his ear. His thumbs were tied together with shoe lace and he was made to stand on a chair. Then his thumbs were tied by a rope of which one end was tied to a beam on the roof. They kicked the chair and left Nuwan to hang in the air.
After that the policemen brought chilli juice in a coconut shelf and poured to his penis.
Next, while Nuwan was hanging from the roof beam, they hit every part of his body using a rubber horse and a pole. After hit him for half an hour he was brought down and again tied to the leg of a bed while he was fully nude. They questioned Nuwan as to whether he snatched gold from Manika and if so, the whereabouts of it.
Again at 10.00 pm in the night he was assaulted and was taken in a jeep to show Chanaka’s house. Nuwan showed them Chanaka’s house.
They arrested Chanaka. Before Chanaka got into the jeep he was assaulted by them using a hoe (mamotee) stick. Both Nuwan and Chanaka were left to lie on the floor of the jeep and the policemen stamped them by their boots.
At 1.00 in the afternoon Chanaka was taken outside and allowed to bathe. After that he was allowed to dress and have meals. After that he was handcuffed to the leg of a bed.
At 5.30 pm in the evening, he was again assaulted by hanging him from the roof like in the earlier occasion. The assault was led by four police personal including the previous three.
At 8.30pm in the night the above said four police personal again assaulted him using rubber horse, hands and legs. At around 9.00 pm he was given rice and curry cooked with cabbages to eat.
After sometime Nuwan’s uncle called Manika brought a black shopping bag full of things, handed over it to SI Rajendra. Four police personal including Rajendra who assaulted Nuwan drank three bottles of arrack and ate bites called murukku; another two police personal also joined them later.
After they finished drinking arrack they forced Nuwan to kneel down. Next, they assaulted Nuwan using a rubber horse. They assaulted on his head using a computer cable. They, time to time, for over two hours, hit him in the similar manner. When he tried to stand up, due to unbearable pain, they forced him to kneel down and hit him. Again he was handcuffed to the leg of a bed.
Next day at about 9.00 am in the morning he was taken outside, his shirt was removed and he was dropped into a barrel. They covered the mouth of the barrel by a sack. They put fire to a heap of coconut leaves and heated the barrel. Nuwan felt as his whole body was burning. He found difficult to breath. They stoned and rolled the barrel under hot sun.
Nuwan vomited; he felt as if he was having fever; he suffered from severe headache.
SI Rajendra took him outside and pointed the pistol to his head and said if he did not accept snatching, then he would be killed. Nuwan forgot all most all the things that happened later on.
On 14.08.2010 around 9.00 am in the morning, two officers attached to Human Rights Commission in Anuradhapura came to see him. When they arrived SI Rajendra was assaulting him and they also saw it.
A female officer who came from human rights commission’s office asked Nuwan, in front of the OIC, as to how the policemen assaulted him, At 3.30 pm he was taken to the Puttalam District hospital. He was taken to a doctor for examination, but he did not report of the police assault to the doctor, because the policemen threatened him to kill if he disclosed the assault.
At around 4.00 pm he was taken to the Magistrate’s room which he was covered by black clothe. Magistrate asked him about the police assault but he did not tell anything because of fear of police retaliation. From there he was taken to Puttalam prison. There he mentioned about the police assault. On 17th he was transferred to Negambo prison. At the prison he said that he was assaulted and then he was admitted to prison hospital.
He complained about the police assault at the hospital police post. The hospital police post recorded the statement from him.
On 02.09.2010 he was released on bail. On 03.09.2010 he was admitted to the hospital. He was treated at the hospital until 06.09.2010. He mentioned that he was assaulted by the police. Chilaw hospital police post also recorded a statement from him. He was examined by the judicial medical officer.
At the human rights commission in Colombo, an inquiry was initiated under the complaint number HRC/3068/10. At the inquiry the following police personal were found as offenders.
2. PC 23623 Perera
3.PC 61612 Gamage
4.PC 49044 Jayakodi
Now, a lawsuit bearing number BR 1016/10 is filled against Nuwan and Chanaka before the Magistrate Court of Puttalam.
Harshi C. Perera
M. L. A. M Ismail