HRCSL seeks cor­rec­tive ac­tion from BASL

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - NEWS - BY YOHAN PER­ERA

The Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) said yes­ter­day mem­bers of a few re­gional Bar As­so­ci­a­tions had been dis­crim­i­na­tive in ren­der­ing their ser­vices to the Mus­lim com­mu­nity and sought cor­rec­tive ac­tion. HRCSL Chair­per­son Dr. N.D. Udugama made this re­quest in writ­ing to Bar As­so­ci­a­tion Chair­man Kalinga In­datissa.

“The at­ten­tion of HRCSL has been drawn to the re­fusal of cer­tain re­gional Bar As­so­ci­a­tions (i.e. Mawanella and Badulla) to ap­pear on behalf of Mus­lims ar­rested in con­nec­tion with post-april 21 at­tacks. As a re­sult, family mem­bers of those ar­rested have been com­pelled to ob­tain le­gal ser­vices from other re­gions thus en­coun­ter­ing in­con­ve­nience and fi­nan­cial con­straints,” she said.

It was also ob­served that mem­bers at­tached to the Nikaw­er­atiya Bar had protested when po­lice re­quested court not to grant bail to those ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of par­tic­i­pat­ing in com­mu­nal vi­o­lence per­pe­trated on May 13 in some parts of the coun­try.

“You would agree that such po­si­tions taken by

This is a se­ri­ous sit­u­a­tion which ques­tions the core values of our le­gal pro­fes­sion. Hence, we re­quest you in earnest to look into this mat­ter and take ur­gent cor­rec­tive mea­sures

eru­dite mem­bers of the le­gal pro­fes­sion are at vari­ance with the ex­pected stan­dards of eth­i­cal and honourable con­duct of le­gal prac­ti­tion­ers who are en­gaged in a pro­fes­sion based on lib­eral values. Such dis­crim­i­na­tory con­duct, you would agree, de­nies to some of our fel­low cit­i­zens the possibilit­y of en­joy­ing equal protection of the law un­der the Con­sti­tu­tion. This is a se­ri­ous sit­u­a­tion which ques­tions the core values of our le­gal pro­fes­sion. Hence, we re­quest you in earnest to look into this mat­ter and take ur­gent cor­rec­tive mea­sures. We would be ap­pre­cia­tive if you would share with the ac­tion taken by BASL in this re­gard,” she wrote to the Bar As­so­ci­a­tion Chair­man.

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