Sumanthiran denies presuring police to release youth caught with Kerala ganja


TNA Parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran, yesterday, denied, in Parliament, having pressured the police to release any youth arrested with Kerala ganja in his possession.

Speaking on the Order under the mutual assistance in the Criminal Matters Act, Sumanthiran responded to an allegation made in parliament yesterday by UPFA-MP Wimal Weerawansa alleging that Sumanthiran’s driver’s brother had been arrested for the possession of Kerala ganja and Sumanthiran had exerted pressure on the police and had his driver’s brother released.

 This issue was published in a gossip column in a leading Sunday newspaper and subsequently in a sister paper on January 6th and 7th. "Both papers did not identify me but very clearly by innuendo I was identified as the person concerned. On January 3rd night around 8.00 pm there was a vehicle in the Championpattu area going up and down suspiciously that was noticed by the youth of the area. I will have to say that it was in this area a few years ago an attempt was made on my life which is a matter of a high court case where the AG has indicted five people in HC 242 of 2018 and the matter is now pending."

Explaining what had happened that day he said, "I was to go for an event in the school the next morning and as there were two attempts on my life earlier, the youth in the area were suspicious when the vehicle with men in civil clothes was circling the area. They had stopped the vehicle and had asked the men in civil clothes for their IDs.  They had refused to show their IDs but pulled out their pistols, got into the vehicle and fled. The youths had given chase on their motorcycles and it was a youth who had informed an army check point ahead that a suspicious vehicle was coming that way and to stop that vehicle. So contrary to what is being said, the youths were not arrested and it was the army who had stopped that vehicle. However, it was found that they were from the vice squad under the directions of the DIG of the area. Thereafter, they made allegations that these youths had assaulted them and therefore, four youths were taken into custody. That was what happened and there was no cannabis that was taken into custody and no raid. It was a case of mistaken identity because of the extra vigilance of the youths in the area," he said.

Sumanthiran said that he had spoken to the DIG "for my own security and explained what happened. I did not ask for the release of anyone, but he said he would look into the matter and take appropriate action and I heard that he had released these four youth the next morning.

Now this is being portrayed as I have interfered in having cannabis smugglers released. This is far from the truth and it is a matter of regret that two reputed newspapers to have reported such news," added the TNA MP.

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