HRCSL files contempt case over power cuts during A/L exam

HRCSL files contempt case over power cuts during A/L exam

January 30, 2023   05:29 pm

The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) says it has filed a case of Contempt of Court before the Supreme Court against the Secretary to the Ministry of Energy & Power, the Chairman of the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and the Chairman of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC).

The HRCSL said it has determined that the aforementioned parties have failed to abide by the settlement arrived at before the commission with regard to the continuous supply of power during the period pertaining to the Advanced Level Examination commencing from 23rd January to 17th February 2023.

Issuing a statement, the commission stated that in the aforesaid circumstances in particular the Chairman of the Electricity Board is guilty of the offence of contempt under the provisions of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka Act No. 21 of 1996. 

The Commission alleges that notwithstanding the settlement arrived by the above parties to provide uninterrupted electricity for the A/L students during the period of the examination, the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) willfully and maliciously disregarded the settlement and continued with the power cuts.

The settlement was to prevent the power cut only during the period of the A/L examination, it said adding, that “the Commission treats the said blatant disregard of the CEB to provide an uninterrupted electricity supply during the examination period is a gross violation of a child’s right to education.”

The HRCSL alleges that having admitted before the Commission that there are meaningful ways to provide electricity, and settling on that basis, the CEB disregarded the assurance and proceeded with the power cut. 

“The Commission found the unbecoming and outrageous behaviour of the State Officials of the CEB as an intentional affront to justice and contempt of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka.”

“In this backdrop, the certificate of contempt has been duly signed by the Commission and forwarded to the Supreme Court and a case of Contempt of Court has been filed before the Supreme Court in this regard which will be taken up in the due course and relevant parties will be heard with the main view of providing a relief to the A/L candidates.” 

The Commission said it will closely observe the developments in this regard.

The Commission reiterated the position that the sole purpose of this intervention is only to ensure the rights of Citizens and in particular that of the A/L Candidates are duly honoured and that the Commission assures its continuous efforts in upholding the rule of law of the country and Fundamental Rights of its citizens. 


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