Relatives of PTA detainees protest in North

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As the United Nations Human Rights Council is set to discuss Sri Lanka’s rights report, relatives of Tamil political prisoners, detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), rallied outside Northern Province Governor Jeevan Thiagarajah’s office yesterday (12), demanding their release.

Between, 2010 and 2022 there were about 12 inmates arrested under the PTA and have gone on a hunger strike beginning on 6 September 2022.

Their relatives and friends visited the Governor’s office demanding their release holding placards condemning the PTA as a draconian act which has ruined many of their lives.

The Governor’s office accepted their petition as he is currently overseas.  They have taken the details and requirements, his office said.

According to sources, the PTA advisory report in July stated some options regarding the law. There is a regular report submitted on the PTA by its advisory committee.  Former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa appointed an advisory committee under Section 13 of the PTA to make suggestions and judgments. Former Chief Justice Ashoka de Silva chairs the council. The group is supposed to give recommendations and advice the President on future choices, such as the investigation, release, and granting of bail to terrorism-related inmates and detainees.

Although it is unknown whether the report has been finalised with the recommendations, Ceylon Today has learned that some legislators have received a copy of the July report on the PTA. According to source, there is a periodical review on the law’s status. 

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan