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Rohana Wijeweera’s wife files Habeas Corpus petition

The wife of late JVP founding leader Rohana Wejeweera yesterday filed a Writs of Habeas Corpus petition in the Court of Appeal seeking an order to produce the Corpus (body) of Rohana Wijeweera before Court to be dealt with according to law.

The petitioner Sreemathi Chithrangani Wijeweera also sought an order in the nature of a writ of habeas corpus releasing or discharging the Corpus forthwith from detention or custody.

Filing this petition through counsel Senaka Perera, the Petitioner states that she did not believe about his death as per the news telecast as she saw her husband alive on television and she never came across a body of the Corpus neither anybody provided an official document to her or any inquest, magisterial inquiry or any such legal process.

The Petitioner, aged 62, the wife of Rohana Wijeweera, is currently residing in the Welisara Navy Camp. The Petitioner states that she is a mother of six children who suffered immensely due to their father’s detention and disappearance. The petitioner has been kept in protected custody and thereafter semi detention to date where she claims that she has not had the freedom to seek legal action until recently and is even scared to come forward to file this case and the Corpus (Rohana Wijeweera) is the father of her six children.

The petitioner named Major General Janaka Perera, Captain Gamini Hettiarachchi, Lieutenant Karunarathna, Colonel Lionel Balagalle, Major General Hamilton Wanasinghe, Major General Cecil Waidyaratne, former Defence Minister General Ranajan Wijerathne, former Secretary of Defense General Cyril Ranatunga and the Attorney General as respondents.

The petitioner stated Corpus was arrested by then Brigadier Janaka Perera and two other high ranking Army officers, namely Captain Gamini Hettiarachchi, Lieutenant Karunarathna at St.Mary’s Estate in Ulapane and has been illegally detained in the illegal custody of the Respondents above named.

The Petitioner states that the Corpus was born on July 14, 1943 and he (Corpus) was not able to complete his university education in Lumumba University, Moscow, and joined active politics through the Lanka Communist Party and led the revolution/rebellion in 1971 and an armed struggle from 1987 to 1990 against the government. The Corpus occupied his family home owned by him with the Petitioner and six children and was in disguise and used the fictitious name Aththanayaka Mudiyanselage Shantha Nimalasiri Aththanayake.

The petitioner states that the Corpus was also contested the first ever Presidential election of Sri Lanka as a candidate of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna and obtained the third highest number of votes in the said election.

The petitioner states that in 1983, the Janatha Vimunkthi Peramuna was proscribed from active politics for unknown reasons.

The Petitioner states that she was not involved in any political activity and led a life under tight control of her husband and she couldn’t take any independent decision or oppose her husband.

The petitioner states that since the party’s proscription, the petitioner and corpus had lived a lifr of secrecy while the corpus was involved in active politics.They used to live in various places.

The petitioner states that they finally lived in a house and estate in Ulapane where the corpus purchased the said property from a private party under his name and corpus operated as a proprietor.

The Petitioner further states that in and around Sunday, November 12, 1989, the Corpus was reading the newspapers, which was part of his daily routine on a Sunday. The Petitioner states that around 1.30 p.m. she saw two vehicles approaching their house; one was a car and the other a Mitsubishi Delica van popularly known as a Delica Van.

The Petitioner states that she thought this might have been comrade Piyadasa who used to come to their house often. The Petitioner states that she realized that it was not the expected party while one of the domestic helps went to open the gate and both vehicles entered the premises.

The Petitioner states that one of persons identified then as Brigadier Janaka Perera pulled his pistol and pointed it at her husband asking whether he was Rohana Wijeweera.

The Petitioner states that at that point she saw the sudden change of facial expressions of her husband, who, out of fear answered the query positively and invited them to come inside the house.

The petitioner states that after a brief discussion they asked him to get dressed to go out.

The petitioner states that afterwards, the 1st to 3rd Respondents accompanied him to their car; her husband was made to sit between two officers seated in the back of the vehicle and the 3rd Respondent was seated in the front passenger seat next to the driver.

The petitioner states that the car with her husband left their compound and after a few minutes she went in to the house to console the children who were distraught after seeing their father been taken away. The Petitioner states that children were not aware that their father’s name was RohanaWijeweera but knew him as Nimal Attanayake.

The petitioner states that children got to know that their father was Rohana Wijeweera when the national television channel showed his interview and by the news telecast that he was killed which she did not believe.