UPDATE (SRI LANKA): Two people tortured to death, another young man tortured by the police of the same police station


Urgent Appeal Case: UP-67-2002
ISSUES: Police violence, Torture,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has been informed that a 25-year-old man was tortured by the police at the Kirindiwela police station – the same police station where a 70-year-old man, P. A. Piyadasa, was tortured to death (see our previous appeal at http://www.ahrchk.net/ua/mainfile.php/2002/379/; please note that his correct age is 70, not 78). 

According to the information we have received, Mr. Nalinda Senaratne from Wahalmaluwa of Kirndiwela was assaulted and taken into police custody by the police attached to the Kirndiwela police station on Nov. 16, 2002. He was arrested on suspicion of stealing chickens. Later he was admitted to the Ragama Hospital and underwent an operation to assess the internal injuries to his stomach. The doctor then referred his case to the judicial medical officer (JMO) of the hospital and sent him to the prison hospital. He is still supposed to stay there. Unfortunately, no further information has been received at the present time about his condition. 

As we informed you earlier, the Kirndiwela police have been accused of torturing to death Mr. P. A. Piyadasa. Thereafter, two police officers, Inspector Premasiri and Subinspector Priyahtha Jayakody, have been appointed to conduct inquires regarding the incident. Meanwhile, the officer in charge (OIC) of the Kirindiwela police station, Ranjuth Mahimkanda, and six other policemen have been transferred pending the completion of the investigation. 

In addition to these cases of torture allegedly committed at the Kirindiwela police station, it has been learned that the police officers of the same station have also been accused of another case of torturing a person to death the previous month. The mother of the victim has complained that her son, Ranjuth Karunaratne, was allegedly tortured to death by the same police officers at the same police station. Presently, this is all the information that is available on this case. 

Thus, at the present time, the police of the Kirindiwela police station are accused of two cases of torturing prisoners to death and one case of torture. 


Please send letters to the minister of interior, attorney general and inspector general of police (IGP) of Sri Lanka, expressing your concern at the increasing number of deaths in police custody and urging them to conduct immediate and impartial investigations into all alleged torture cases. 

To support this case, please click here: SEND APPEAL LETTER



Re: Two cases of alleged torture to death and the torture case of Mr. Nalinda Senaratne 

I am writing to express my grave concerns about the increasing number of people dying in police custody in Sri Lanka and to urge you to immediately initiate impartial investigations into all alleged torture cases, especially by the police of the Kirindiwela police station. 

During the last few days, I have been shocked to learn that two people have allegedly been tortured to death and a 25-year-old young man, Mr. Nalinda Senaratne, was tortured to such an extent that he required an operation in the hospital to assess his internal injuries caused allegedly by torture. 

Even though members of the international human rights community have expressed extreme concerns about the widespread use of torture to you and have urged you to take concrete steps to stop these crimes against humanity, no actions have been taken and no perpetuators of torture have been brought to justice at the present time. 

Therefore, once again, I strongly urge you to take action to stop these crimes and to urgently begin immediate and impartial investigations into all alleged torture cases. Because the State and responsible agencies continue to be negligent in undertaking their obligations, many more innocent lives will be lost at the hands of “the protectors of the law.” 

I look forward to leaning about your action to stop these crimes against humanity. 

Sincerely yours, 



1. Minister of Interior 
Mr. John Amaratunga 
Ministry of Interior 
P.O. Box 572, No. 15/5, Baladaksha 
Mawatha, Colombo 3 
Fax: 941 389 021 
E-mail: interior@sltnet.lk 
SALUTATION: Dear Minister 

2. Hon. Mr. K. C. Kamalasabesan 
Attorney General 
Attorney General’s Department 
Colombo 12 
Fax: +94 1 436-421 
E-mail: attorney@sri.lanka.net or counsel@sri.lanka.net 
SALUTATION: Dear Attorney General 

3. Mr. T. E. Anandrajah 
Inspector General of Police 
New Secretariat 
Colombo 1 
Fax: +94 1 446-174 
SALUTATION: Dear Inspector General of Police

Document Type : Urgent Appeal Update
Document ID : UP-67-2002
Countries : Sri Lanka,
Issues : Police violence, Torture,