A former member of Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) has filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court challenging the legality of the Presidential Pardon granted by President to former Parliamentarian DumindaSilva.

Through his petition, the petitioner Ghazali Hussain, an Attorney-at-law by profession is seeking a declaration that his fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 12(1) for equal protection of the law have been violated through this action.

The petitioner is also seeking an interim order preventing Duminda Silva from leaving the country until the final determination of this application.

The petitioner maintained that any pardon to be granted under Article 34 of the Constitution should be made after a careful analysis of the necessity to grant such a pardon as stipulated in the proviso to Article 34 (1) of the Constitution. The petitioner said a report has to be called from the Trial Judges as required by the Proviso to Article 34 (1) before granting the pardon to Duminda Silva. He further said the Minister of Justice is also required to submit a recommendation to the President.

The petitioner said to his knowledge, the President has not made an explanation to the Bar Association of Sri Lanka which requested to make the public aware of the basis on which Duminda Silva was selected to grant a pardon under Article 34 (1) of the Constitution.

On September 8, 2016, five accused including former DefenceMinistry Monitoring MP Duminda Silva were sentenced to death by Colombo High Court for committing the murder of four persons including former MP Bharatha LakshmanPremachandra on or around October 8, 2011.

On October 11, 2018, Supreme Court five-judge-bench headed by then Chief Justice Priyasath Dep unanimously decided to dismiss the appeal filed by former MP Duminda Silva and two others who challenged the judgment of Colombo High Court that found them guilty for conspiring to murder four persons including former MP Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra.

Former Parliamentarian Hirunika Premachandra had also filed a Fundamental Rights petition challenging the President’s decision to pardon Duminda Silva.


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