MP reads out raped woman's letter

Place: Batticaloa | Courtesy: TamilNet
| Date: 20000706

Speaking on the extension of the emergency in Parliament Thursday, Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) MP for Batticaloa Mr. Joseph Pararajasingham read out a letter written to the Sri Lanka's National Human Rights Commission by a seventy year old woman of Neervely in Jaffna who was raped and robbed by Sri Lankan army personnel on May 31.

The MP said that he was bringing the letter to the attention of the house as the matter had been suppressed under the censorship. Mr.Pararajasingham pointed out that about 1500 Tamil youth have been detained for more than four years under the Prevention of Terrorism Act without trial.

The MP said that he had requested the President to appoint a commission of inquiry into the killing of 22 innocent Tamil civilians in Batticaloa due to indiscriminate firing by the security forces on May 17.

But nothing has been done to date despite the evidence of Rev.Chandra Fernando, Magdaline Mary, a 14 year old student and Kosiyan Thiyagarajah, an eight year old undergoing multiple surgery for injuries due to the firing Mr.Pararajasingham deplored.

In the letter read out in the house by the MP, the raped seventy year old woman, Poomani Saravanai, says that she was molested in front of her 32 year old son by a soldier while his accomplice had held him (the son) at gun point. The soldiers had stolen four thousand rupees in cash and jewellery valued at hundred thousand rupees from the woman after raping her.

Concluding her letter, Poomani says, "This incident itself is a typical example that portrays the inner motive of the Sri Lankan government to annihilate the Tamil race by torturing and shaming".

Copies of the letter have been sent, among others, to Mr.Karunanithi, chief minister of Tamil Nadu, Mr.V.Gopalasamy, leader of the MDMK and Mr.Vasudeva Nanayakara, MP for Ratnapura.