Written by Tharushan Fernando
17 Jul, 2015 | 8:00 pm
A fundamental rights petition was filed at the supreme court July 17 citing that Mahinda Rajapaksa contesting the general election with the privileges of a former president makes it unfair for other candidates.
This petition was filed by the national list nominee from the Nava Sama Samaja Party, attorney-at-law Senaka Perera. In addition to former president Rajapaksa, the elections commissioner, the inspector general of police, the attorney general, the minister of public order and christian religious affairs, the defence minister and the secretary to ministry of defense were listed as respondents in the petition.
Perera added that they submitted this petition on the grounds that all candidates should be on the same level. He added that 105 police officers, three ASPs and an Army unit have been provided to Rajapaksa and he has the right to contest. However, Peresa said, all 6,151 candidates must be treated equally. He requested courts courts to temporaly remove the special provisions until the polls are over.
The JVP has also lodged a complain with the Human Rights Commission requesting the privileges of Mahinda Rajapaksa be curtailed untill the end of the election.
Attorney-at-Law Sunil Watagala added that there is only one page in the Presidents Rights Act and the page says that when a president ends his tenure he should be only given an official residence and a special allowance. Watagala said Rajapaksa has become a candidate of the UPFA after enjoying many privileges against this act so the elections commissioner should not safeguard himself and must intervene in this matter.
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