Pujith Jayasundara arrives at PCoI probing 4/21 attacks

Pujith Jayasundara arrives at PCoI probing 4/21 attacks

Pujith Jayasundara arrives at PCoI probing 4/21 attacks

Written by Staff Writer

25 Jan, 2020 | 11:34 pm

Colombo (News 1st): The Presidential Commission inquiring into the April 21st attacks, got underway today (Jan 25). At the beginning of the hearing, the judge chairing the commission said that the recording of evidence will solely base on the damage caused to the Buddha statues in Mawanella.

The judge said that Pujith Jayasundara will be summoned again to obtain evidence on the April 21st attacks. Pujith Jayasundara admitted when questioned if he was aware of the reports citing that Buddha statues were damaged on the 23rd, 24th and 26th of December 2018.

Pujith Jayasudara went on to note that he instructed relevant officials to investigate into the matter. He, however, added that the task was handed over to the Criminal Investigations Department as there was no progress in the investigations.

When questioned if he communicated clear instructions to then CID Director Shani Abeysekara in this regard, Pujith Jayasundara said he does not recall if he did so. With the assistance of telephone records, the Presidential commission questioned about a phone call Pujith Jayasundara received from Azath Salley, on December 29th, 2018.

Pujith Jayasundara responded saying Azath Salley contacted him twice. The State Council then questioned what Azath Salley said during the phone conversations. Responding to this Pujith noted that Azath Salley contacted him to share details of the 2 suspects of the incident.

He added that Azath Salley spoke in a manner which hinted that he will assist in handing the 2 suspects over to authorities. Details of a meeting convened by Secretary of Defence based on the information was given by Azath Salley were revealed during the hearings.

A group including Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando, Azath Salley, Inspector General of Police, Director of Terrorist Investigation Division attended the meeting.

According to the statement made by Pujth Jayasundara, when Azath Salley mentioned about sermons conducted at a mosque in Kattankudi, former Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando questioned how religious sermons can be considered as a terrorist activity.

Pujith Jayasundara said that he instructed the Kegalle ASP and other responsible authorities about the information revealed during the phone conversations with Azath Salley. Azath Salley was given the opportunity to cross-question Pujith Jayasundara.

Azath Salley questioned Pujih Jayasundara if he attempted to exert pressure or influence the IGP during the phone conversations. Pujith Jayasundara then responded saying that Azath Salley did not influence him and that he will not let anyone do so.

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