Former Justice Minister and opposition MP Talatha Athukorala in a shocking disclosure to Parliament said that the Secretary to the Ministry of Law and order has written to the Chief Justice holding the lower judiciary responsible for the current social unrest in the country.
Secretary Jagath Alwis, a retired military officer, has said the Police could not act swiftly on matters connected to violence owing to the decisions made by the Magistrates and lower court judges.
According to informed sources, the tone of the letter written by the Secretary amounts to contempt of the judiciary, and the Chief justice referred the matter to the Attorney General. The Attorney General should advise the Supreme Court whether there is the possibility of issuing a rule on the Secretary concerned for contempt after perusing the letter.
Former Justice Minister Ms Athukoala told Parliament the act was a blatant interference with the independence of the judiciary. “The secretary should have made representations to the Attorney General instead of writing to the Chief Justice directly”.
Meanwhile, government benches complained in Parliament that they could not depend on the lower courts for justice. ” Most of the time, miscreants walk into courts amid applauses by the lawyers, and they get bail and go scot-free, another MP lamented.