The Supreme Court today, issued an Interim Order suspending the operation of Prevention of Terrorism (De-radicalization from holding violent extremist religious ideology) Regulations, No. 01 of 2021, which was published by way of a gazette notification on 12 March 2021.

A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court comprising Justice Murdu Fernando, Justice Yasantha Kodagoda and Justice AchalaWengappuli issued this order when three Fundamental Rights petitions challenging the legality of the De-radicalization Regulations were taken up for support.

This Interim Order will be effective until August 24, the next hearing date.

Journalists and human rights activists RuwanLaknath Jayakody, Kavindya Christopher Thomas, Centre for Policy Alternative and its Executive Director Dr PaikiasothySaravanamuttu and Shreen Saroor filed Fundamental Rights petitions seeking a declaration that the DeradicalizationRegulations is not legally valid.

The petitioners further sought a declaration that De-radicalization Regulations would permit room for the continuous or imminent infringement of fundamental rights  guaranteedto surrenders, arrestees or detainees under Articles 10, 11, 12(1), 12(2)

13(1) , 13(2) , 13(3) , 13(4) , 13(5) , 13(6) , 14(1)(a) , 14(1)(b), 14(1)(c) and/or 17 of the Constitution.

The Petitioners stated that the President had made regulations titled Prevention of Terrorism (De-radicalization from holding violent extremist religious ideology) Regulations No. 01 of 2021 issued under Section 27 of the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act, No. 48 of 1979 (PTA).


The petitioners stated that individuals arrested under these Regulations can be subjected to executive or administrative detention camouflaged as rehabilitation without proper judicial evaluation of the evidence against the individuals arrested, surrenders or detainees.

They further alleged that De-radicalization Regulations run counter to the fundamental safeguards in the Constitution, international human rights norms, and interferes with the judicial power of the People.

Petitioners further alleged that they are yet unaware whether the De-radicalization Regulations have been placed before Parliament and duly approved as required by the PTA.


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