More police officers testify on attempts to conceal truth on Easter attacks
December 14, 2019 11:36 pm
Several more police officers gave evidence before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry probing the Easter Sunday terror attacks, today (14).
The police officers who testified before the Commission yesterday (13) had revealed that the logbooks of Kotahena Police were replicated with fabricated information in an attempt to conceal the truth about the horrific series of terror attacks.
The first to testify before the panel today was ASP Neranjala Abeywardene of the Colombo North police division. He has told the panel members that he had not been aware of any letters of warning of an impending attack on Easter Sunday. “Although I spoke with SP Sanjeewa Bandara on April 21, nothing about an attack was mentioned,” he has added.
Then-Acting OIC of Dematagoda Police Chief Inspector Anil Jayantha, who gave evidence to the Commission afterwards, has stated that he had been on leave for five days from the 21st of April. He further noted that he had not received any forewarning on the blasts and that he had been on duty on the day of the attacks and the following day.
“SP Sanjeewa Bandara had instructed me to make a note in the logbook saying that I received the warning letter on the day before the blasting took place. But I refused to do so” the chief inspector has told the Presidential Commission of Inquiry.
When asked as to why he refused to carry out the order, the chief inspector said that he as mindful of the consequences he would have to face when investigations are conducted on the attacks.
He was then asked if it was only SP Sanjeewa Bandara who made the request, the chief inspector responded that the personal assistant Upendra had also made the same request.
The Commission has then put to him that a letter was received by Dematagoda Police on April 1, 2019, pertaining to disaster management, under the same reference number bourne by the warning of the latter on the attacks.
In response to this, the chief inspector has said it was his view that the move might be an attempt to indicate that the warning on the attack was issued in advance.
The Commission’s attention also fell on the explosion that took place at a house in Dematagoda on the day of the attacks. It was revealed that statements were recorded from the parents of the woman who had blown herself up. Her mother had said her daughter was engaged in religious observance more on the day of the attack than she usually does.
Statements were also recorded from the bomber’s domestic aid, who had told the investigators that the woman who blew herself up kept the children who died in the explosion inside the room on that specific day.