June 29, Colombo: One inmate has died and nearly thousand inmates have escaped during a clash between inmates of the Kandakadu Rehabilitation Center for drug addicts in Welikanda today, Police Media Spokesman SSP Nihal Thalduwa said.
According to reports, the detainees have broken the security fence of the rehabilitation center and escaped at around 8.00 am today during an incident following the death of an inmate.
It is reported that a detainee who had behaved in a riotous manner has died. The deceased has been identified as a 36 year old resident of Modara.
The police spokesman said that the inmate at the detention center had died suspiciously last night and that nearly a thousand people had started rioting inside the camp since then.
The Police Media Spokesman said the detainees had hurled stones at the police and army personnel guarding the rehabilitation center and about 500-600 detainees have escaped by breaking down the security fences this morning.
He said the detainees are not allowing the police or the security forces near the body of the deceased detainee.
The Police Media Spokesman said that a special operation has been launched to find the fugitives.
More than 500 security personnel have been deployed to search for the escaped detainees. Security forces suspect that they are hiding in the Somawathiya National Park on both sides of the Sungavila Road.
Security has been beefed up in the area and troops, Army and Special Task Force (STF) have joined the operation.