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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 113

Tamil Nadu government offers peanuts as compensation for the Sri Lankan killed by Indian prison guard

Colombo, 11 October, (Asiantribune.com): Jeyaraj Fernandopulle, Minister of Highways & Road Development and the Treasurer of the ruling Sri Lanka Freedom Party told Asian Tribune that the Indian government has yet to take action against the prison guard who shot dead Warnakulasuriya Canicius Fernando, (44), an unarmed Sri Lankan visitor to the Madura Central Prison, on October 05, 2007. He also said the offer of Indian Rs. 100,000 (USD. 2,557.54 ) as compensation by the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister is like adding insult to injury.Jeyaraj Fernandopulle said that Fernando is a constituent of his Negombo electoral district. The killing of a Sri Lankan visitor, who had all the proper documents with him, was a high handed act and Tamil Nadu Government is answerable to such unprovocative killing.Jeyaraj Fernandopulle said that Fernando is a constituent of his Negombo electoral district. The killing of a Sri Lankan visitor, who had all the proper documents with him, was a high handed act and Tamil Nadu Government is answerable to such unprovocative killing.

Fernando, a father of two children, had gone to meet the 4 Sri Lankan Fishermen who were to be released on 08 October from the Madura Central Prison. He went to meet the Sri Lankans with all the necessary documents. He had every right to meet the Sri Lankan prisoners, but the prison authorities adopted a hostile attitude and he was asked to come again at 4 PM. It was when Fernando after waiting fo 4 hours, he entred the premises the second time that he was shot in the neck by the Indian prison guard.

Minister Fernandopulle said that Fernando is a constituent of his Negombo electoral district. The killing of a Sri Lankan visitor, who had all the proper documents with him, was a high handed act and Tamil Nadu Government is answerable to such unprovocative killing.

Dismissing the offer of Rs.100,000 to Fernando’s family he asked: “Is this the price Tamil Nadu is paying to cover up the killing by one of its government employees?”

Minister Fernandopulle explained that the wife and two children of the deceased have lost their breadwinner and they don’t even have a house of their own to live. He added that half perch of a land in Negombo would cost more than the compensation offered by the Tamil Nadu Government.

He said: “If the Tamil Nadu Government is genuinely concerned about compensating the family of the Sri Lankan they should come up with a reasonable figure. By offering Rs.100,000 to the family of an innocent man killed by the Tamil Nadu government is cheapening the lives of Sri Lankans.”

Minister said that he had on his own paid Rs.50,000 to the family which may be just enough to cover the funeral expenses.

He said that he knew personally Canicius Fernando who was a very kind and gentle man who worked for the fisher community. He said before he left for India he met him on a delegation led by a Buddhist monk to discuss about providing kerosene oil for the fishermen in the country on a subsidized prices.

Minister further said Canicius Fernando has even met President Mahinda Rajapakse to make representations on this issue.

In the meantime, Sri Lanka has asked India to conduct a judicial probe into the killing of Canicius Fernando by a Tamil Nadu police constable at the Madurai prison last week.

Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama told parliament on Tuesday, that Sri Lanka has asked India to conduct an "independent and impartial" judicial inquiry and allow a representative of the Sri Lankan government to participate in the probe.

Bogollagama said that government had instructed a law firm to assist the Sri Lankan Deputy High Commission in Chennai in the matter.

- Asian Tribune –

Also Read: Indian prison guard kill Sri Lankan fishermen’s representative in Tamil Nadu

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