A special committee appointed by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has observed that certain provisions of the proposed Anti-Terrorism Bill infringe on the fundamental rights of the citizens.
The BASL stated that it appointed a special committee consisting of senior legal experts to review the Anti-Terrorism Bill, gazetted on March 22, 2023. The said committee has observed that certain provisions, inter alia, clauses 3, 4, 10, 11, 13, 14, 15, 16, 28, 30, 31, 36, 82, 83, 84, 85, and 86 of the bill infringe upon the
principles of the criminal justice system and are in contravention of the legal rights of citizens.
In a statement, the BASL stated that it is the view of the Committee that the provisions stipulated in the said bill violate the fundamental rights enumerated under Chapter III of the Constitution of Sri Lanka.
especially in light of Article 14 of the constitution (i.e., freedom of speech, assembly, association, occupation, movement, etc.).
The BASL announced that, based on the committee recommendations, it will be making representations to the Ministry of Justice and all other stakeholders, requesting that amendments be made to the bill in compliance with the law.
“In order to protect the rights of the citizens, in the event the bill is placed on the order paper before parliament in its current form, BASL will be taking steps in law to challenge the bill in the appropriate forum,” the BASL statement added.


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