Sajith says Mahara Prison COVID-19 cluster caused due to prisoners’ detention

Sajith says Mahara Prison COVID-19 cluster caused due to prisoners’ detention

Sajith says Mahara Prison COVID-19 cluster caused due to prisoners’ detention

Written by Staff Writer

02 Dec, 2020 | 10:39 pm

COLOMBO (News1st): The COVID-19 cluster at the Mahara prison was formed due to the detention of 120 inmates disregarding objections by doctors, opposition leader Sajith Premadasa has said.

“We have learnt that the assistant director of the prison hospital, had detained 120 prison inmates, violating COVID-19 regulations,” Premadasa said in Parliament.

He pointed out that the move had prompted inmates to demand PCR tests for COVID-19, leading to the unrest that erupted at the Mahara prison on Monday killing 11 and injuring at least 117.

“Wrongdoers should be punished. However, they cannot be murdered by violating the judicial process,” the Samagi Jana Balawegaya argued during a parliamentary debate.

Opposition lawmaker Nalin Bandara raised concerns on cremating nine inmates who died in the unrest, in keeping with the law, as their PCR tests turned out positive for COVID-19.

“This is a conspiracy. We urge the government to disclose the postmortem reports of the victims,” the Samagi Jana Balawegaya parliamentarian insisted.

He also urged the government to disclose the names of the inmates who had died or been injured in the melee.

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