Colombo: Slamming his police chief for evicting hundreds of ethnic minority Tamils from the capital, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse on 8 June 2007 invited the evicted people back to Colombo and ordered a disciplinary probe into the exercise.
President Mahinda Rajapakse took “serious note of the concerns expressed” by members of parliament, human rights organizations, religious leaders and the media relating to the exercise yesterday,“ Rajapakse’s office said in a statement.
“Allegations that officials exceeded their authority in implementing this initiative will be thoroughly investigated and appropriate remedial action will be taken, including disciplinary action against any wrongdoing on the part of any government official,” the president’s office said.
With the president taking the police chief Victor Perera to task, the government arranged to bring back the Tamils who were being held at a detention centre in the northern town of Vavuniya, 260 kilometers north of here.
“The Inspector General of Police has been asked to submit an immediate report to the President on the manner in which the exercise to transport Tamil persons was carried out yesterday, and about reports regarding hardships and inconvenience caused to the persons concerned,” the statement said.
The hard-hitting statament came after the Supreme Court halted the evictions and the United States, a key ally of the government, led international condemnation of the exercise.
Sri Lanka’s apex court earlier on 8 June ordered an immediate halt on the eviction of minority ethnic Tamils from the nation’s capital.