Oct 07, Colombo: Sri Lanka police chief, Inspector General of Police N.K. Ilangakoon has directed a special probe on the lack of police action to the clashes in Matara on Saturday at an opposition party protest march.
Two rival groups of the opposition United National Party (UNP) clashed in the city during a protest march staged by one group demanding the party leader to step down.
Media showed videos of mobs armed with clubs waiting till the demonstration urging to oust the UNP leader Ranil Wickremasinghe was arriving in the city. Later they charged on the demonstration attacking the participants with clubs.
A shooting also took place in the clash and the father of the expelled party member Maithri Gunaratne, Herman Gunaratne was seen in the videos shooting at the crowd. He was taken into custody by the police.
Several persons were injured in the clash and several vehicles were damaged too. However, the Police involvement to control the situation was minimal.
Acting Police media spokesman SP Ajith Rohana said the investigation will be conducted by Senior Deputy Inspector General in charge of Administration Gamini Navaratne and a special police team headed by Navaratne has been dispatched to Matara to conduct investigations.
The team is instructed to conduct inquiries to determine whether the police failed to take prompt action and prevent the clash.
Both parties in the clash accused police for not taking action to control the situation.
Meanwhile, the Matara Additional Magistrate ordered to further remand the 25 suspects arrested by the police on suspicion of instigating violence until October 14.