Facebook icon
Twitter icon
e-mail icon

EPDP admits Batticaloa 'abductions'

A political ally of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has admitted abducting a businessman in Batticaloa leading to renewed tension in the region.


Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP) admitted the party 'arrested' three people including the missing businessman, Devadasan Sureshkumar.


However, in an interview with BBC Tamil Service, EPDP councillor Arumailingam rejected accusations that he is still under their custody.


Mr. Sureshkumar was 'abducted' by a group of EPDP members came in a white van, his wife Vijitha Devadasan told BBC Sandeshaya.


An EPDP cadre, Ravi, was questioning Mr. Devadasan at the EPDP office and two others, Vijaya and Segar, promised to release him by 7pm, she added.


“We waited until 10 pm under a tree. When we went there at about 5am, we were told that my husband ran away at about 8pm,” she told BBCSinhala.com.


Councillor Arumailingam says three arrested in Chenkalady, on charges of throwing stones at EPDP vehicles, were later released.


He accused the three including Mr. Devadasan, of being members of the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Puligal (TMVP), a charge denied by his wife.


 “We have no connection whatsoever with any organisation. We do not know why he was taken away," she said.


The EPDP members prevented them from lodging a complaint with the police or approaching Sri Lanka Army (SLA) personnel, she added.


The TMVP is currently led by Chief Minister of the EasternProvince, Sivanesathurai chandrakanthan (Pillayan).


Minister Douglas Devananda is the leader of the EPDP.


Both the EPDP and TMVP are political allies of Rajapaksa administration.


It is unlawful for anybody apart from the police, to arrest or manhandle people in Sri Lanka.


However, both the TMVP and EPDP have admitted 'arresting' and 'abducting' civilians during recent weeks.


The TMVP is accused by international watchdogs of gross human rights violations including child recruitment.