Written By NAFSO on Tuesday, March 18, 2014 | 10:18:00 AM
A blogger and journalist has pulled out of his media related work with immediate effect, owing to intimidation and death threats from a group of persons who are members of a Civil Security committee in Quarry Road, Dehiwala, with alleged links to the area police, it was revealed yesterday.
Wiki Wickramaratna, a freelance journalist and blogger, told the Sunday Times that the threats and intimidation started in May last year, after some controversial pictures and text of a group of people including several women dancing inside the premises of a Buddhist temple at a location in Quarry Road, Dehiwala, were posted.
Among the pictures captured in the frames at the Galvihara Temple are several persons dancing including women with their backs to a huge statue of the Buddha, while others are seen partaking in meals in an enclosure used by monks for preaching purposes, also known as the ‘Bana Maduwa’.
The group also includes several persons from the Civil Security Committee appointed by the Dehiwala police, and these individuals are allegedly behind the threats, Mr Wickramaratna said.
He said he took the matter up with a senior police official in the Mt Lavinia Division and subsequently, a statement was recorded in December last year, and a single inquiry held at the office of the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Mt Lavinia, where both parties were summoned.
“The inquiry started off with the officer saying that the particular Civil Security committee was the best in the Division. I knew then that nothing was going to happen about my inquiry,” he said.
“Furthermore, the police officer on this occasion advised me to withdraw the complain and remove the pictures and material posted on my site, as it had caused much harm to the image of the country. They also said that it would be better for my own safety”, Mr Wikramarathna added.
He further alleged that the Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) who had been assigned to hold the inquiry, was rude and was adamant that the pictures and text be removed from the internet.
He said that, as the area police showed no interest in his case, the matter will now be addressed to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) at the very earliest.
Mr Wikramarathna is also the founder of the Singhalaya Surekeeme Sanvidhanaya (SiSuSa) or ‘Proud to be Sinhala’, and this group repeatedly posted material on the website that put the government in poor light.
However, a senior official of the Mt Lavinia Police Division told the Sunday Times that they had initiated an inquiry, but for lack of evidence the probe was dropped.
The official denied the police had been partial and were adverse to the complainant.