Sri Lanka’s contempt of court laws a concern at Genewa

Sri Lanka’s contempt of court laws a concern at Genewa

Parliamentarians Hareen Fernando and Manusha Nanayakkara are in Geneva to raise issues on the Contempt of Court laws of Sri Lanka and the sentencing of fellow parliamentarian Ranjan Ramanayka.

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has pointed out that the practice of the Contempt of Court law in Sri Lanka and in the way it is practiced in Sri Lanka, violates International law and the Sri Lankan Constitution, by depriving protection of law to the persons accused of this offense.

Michael Emmanuel Fernando, S.B Dissanayake Ranjan Ramanayake has been imprisoned in recent times.

In the case of Fernando, for one year rigorous imprisonment for allegedly talking loud in court; in the case of S. B Dissayanayake for speaking the word ‘‘shameful court’ in a public meeting outside courts, two years rigorous imprisonment; in the case of Ranjan Ramanayake referring to judicial corruption for which he was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for four years plus the loss of participation in elections for seven years. The AHRC argues that the punishment has been

Disproportionate. under international law, disproportionate punishment amounts to illegal detention. Illegal detention has been guaranteed by the constitution, which notes it is a violation of fundamental rights.

Most likely parliamentarians Harin and Manusha would take up this aspect with relevance to Ranjan’s sentence in a bid to lobby for their colleague’s release.

Recently when Ranjan was produced at the political victimization commission and when the journalist asked if he would ask for a Presidential pardon he fired back a question to the journalist asking them ‘have I done anything wrong to ask pardon?

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