Attackers tried to kill Manjula Tillekeratne - Mangala

by Zacki Jabbar

Sunday’s physical attack on Manjula Thilekeratne, the Judicial Service Commission Secretary, was aimed at killing him and the government should stop trivialising the incident, the UNP said yesterday.

Mangala Samaraweera MP, addressing a news conference in Colombo, said that the JSC Secretary had been targeted by a goon squad because he had spoken out against high level interference in the judiciary.

There was an attempt to trivialise the whole episode by attributing motives such as robbery and personal animosity, but the truth was that Thilekeratne had been ruthlessly assaulted for taking a bold stand on the need to ensure judicial independence and democratic governance, the MP noted.

Violence perpetrated against a judicial officer was tantamount to an attack on the entire judiciary. The UNP was observing the developing situation very carefully, he said adding that it would do everything in its power to oppose the dictatorship that was terrorizing those who dared speak the truth.

Samaraweera appealed to the Police to stop arresting petty thieves and to reign in the real culprits who assaulted Thilekeratne.

The JSC Secretary had changed his place of residence and also asked for adequate protection due to the serious threat on his life, but the authorities had failed to respond positively, the MP observed.

Samaraweera said that organised attacks on civil society and opposition party members, who dared oppose the Rajapaksa regime, was on the rise and the dangerous trend had to be stopped before it engulfed the entire country.

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