Mannar Bishop denied visit to Mahara Prison
Dr. JJ complains to Prisons chiefAugust 4, 2012, 5:48 pm
Senior UNP parliamentarian, Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena has complained to Prisons chief, P. W. Kodippili that Mannar Bishop, Rt. Rev. Dr Rayappu Joseph was denied entry to the Mahara prison to visit remand prisoners transferred from Vavuniya.
In a letter to the Commissioner-General of Prisons, the MP says he was informed by the Bishop that he would like to visit the Mahara prison. "I was made to understand that among the prisoners transferred from Vavuniya were a few Catholic remand prisoners as well. The intention of the proposed visit by a respected Catholic Bishop was to give his blessings to these prisoners and also offer a prayer for them".
Before accompanying the Bishop, the MP says he tried to contact the prisons chief on several occasions by telephone and his Personal Assistant Sumudu Perera informed him that he was unable to speak to him (the MP) as he was busy. "I left a message with the PA giving my mobile number and kept him informed that I will be accompanying the Bishop to the Mahara Prison. I did not receive any response to my calls".
Dr. Jayawardena said that officials of the Mahara prison informed him in the presence of the Bishop that he, as an MP, could meet the prisoners, but they cannot allow the Bishop to do so following an order from the higher authorities.
"I am fully aware that any remand prisoner could have one visit daily for three persons to meet prisoners. This has been the tradition and practice of any prison in Sri Lanka. I strongly feel the Bishop should have also been granted a visit according to this tradition. By denying the visit, the Prisons Department has discriminated those prisoners", the MP further complained.
What’s Sri Lanka’s best overseas Test win?
Last Updated Jun 18 2013 | 05:58 pm
Await Breaking News...