Tuesday, January 08, 2008

SRI LANKA: The Police `forced` a mentally retarded man to drown in Colombo

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A man was forced to drown in Bambalapitiyam Colombo on 30th October in front of several onlookers.

The victim was believed to be mentally retarded and used to throw stones towards trains and vehicles passing by, according to the Police spokesman.

The victim, Balawarnam Sivakumar, an ethnic Tamil from Ratmalana, had reportedly thrown stones towards the Bambalapitiya police before jumping into the sea. The shocking television footage taken by a cameraman from his television office showed policemen attempting to beat the victim using sticks and preventing him from coming ashore resulting in his death by drowning.

The body of Balawarnam Sivakumar was washed ashore near the Kollupitiya Railway station at around noon on 30th October. His body had been identified by his elder brother Balawarnam Kadirgamanathan (32).

Related Links:
Crowd watch as police beat man to death
Three more cops wanted over B’balapitiya attack
Political parties and human rights organisations protest
" I saw the body of the victim floating in the water" - TNL Assistant News Editor

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