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Produce accused on fast before JMO, submit report: HC

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Anurathapura High Court has directed the Superintendent of the Anurathapura Prison to produce accused on fast before the Judicial Medical Officer and submit a report. 

Court made the order when the case of killing 26 Army and Naval personnel came up for hearing.  The Superintendent of Anuradhapura Prison submitted a report to the Anuradhapura High Court (HC) claiming, the fast unto death by three LTTE suspects accused of killing 26 Army and Navy personnel in their custody, was done to avoid courts. The three accused are in the habit of refusing food the day before they are due to be produced in court. The day after they are produced in court, the accused resume taking food as usual.

State Counsel Kasun Sarathchandra and Senior State Counsel (SSC) Madhawa Tennakoon, who appeared for the Attorney General (AG) submitted that, outside influence had prompted the accused to engage in the fast, requesting their case be moved from the Anuradhapura HC to the Vavuniya HC.

SSC Tennakoon pleaded that the case, which was originally heard in Vavuniya, had been moved to Anuradhapura on perfectly justifiable grounds. While the AG’s Dept was not bound to state reasons for the change, he noted the move was made to ensure protection for the witnesses and a fair trial for the accused.

He further submitted that if any party feels aggrieved by the decision, they could file a case in the Appeal Court, rather than hold protests throughout the country. Insisting that protests won’t help transfer the case, he stressed it should be heard immediately.

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