‘Batti’ paid compensation | Page 46 | Daily News
SC acts on police brutality:

‘Batti’ paid compensation

The Supreme Court yesterday ruled that the Fundamental Rights of a woman who police claimed as a com­mer­cial sex­ual worker have been infringed by police following the brutal assault at the Rat­na­pura Bus Stand in 2014, after she refused to provide sex­ual ser­vices free.

The Supreme Court two-judge-bench comprising Justice Eva Wanasundera and Justice L.T.B. Dehideniya ordered a police sergeant who was then attached to the Ratnapura Police Station to pay a compensation of Rs.55,000 as damages to the victim before December 31 this year.

The State was also ordered to pay a compensation of Rs.5,000 as damages to the victim before the above mentioned date.

The petitioner W.A.Kanthi­latha alias Batti (38), had filed a fun­da­men­tal rights pe­ti­tion against po­lice bru­tal­ity at the Rat­na­pura bus area seek­ing Rs. 50 mil­lion as com­pen­sa­tion.

The pe­ti­tioner had cited Rat­na­pura Po­lice Sta­tion OIC, SSP and the Po­lice Spokesper­son and the IGP as re­spon­dents.

In her pe­ti­tion, Kanthilatha said she was ap­proached by a Police Sergeant sta­tioned at the Bus Stand area and re­quested for sex­ual ser­vices free.

When she re­fused his advances, he had then re­quested half a bot­tle of ar­rack which re­quest also she re­fused. Then the said po­lice per­son­nel told her, “You will see what I can do,” the petitioner said.

The petitioner said when she was roam­ing around the bus stand on Septem­ber 6, 2014 she had a com­mo­tion with another com­mer­cial sex worker, ‘who was good with po­lice of­fi­cers’ in the wait­ing area and there was a heated ex­change of words. Sud­denly she had found the said po­lice of­fi­cer be­hind her demanding why she came to the ar­ea she was told not to come.

Then the po­lice of­fi­cer had started as­sault­ing her with a thick cane in pub­lic and he had caught her by her hair and beat her on the ground and kicked her in the back which had been videoed and up­loaded in the In­ter­net by some­one, the petitioner further stated.

The petitioner further said she was ap­proached by another po­lice of­fi­cer who of­fered her Rs 3,000 to set­tle the dis­pute.

She also sought a declaration from court that her fun­da­men­tal rights to free­dom from tor­ture, right to equal­ity and equal pro­tec­tion of the law, free­dom from ar­bi­trary ar­rest had been vi­o­lated by the respondents.

Counsel Lakshan Dias with Niranga Pushpakumara and Udul Premaratne appeared for the petitioner.

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