The Reuters news agency reports that the Madras high court in India’s southern city of Chennai, postponed the hearing of a plea seeking the arrest of Minister Douglas Devananda who is a proclaimed offender in India. The minister was part of the president’s delegation that was on a four-day official tour of India.
According to Reuters, the public interest litigation was filed by a pro-Sri Lankan Tamil Forum on Wednesday, which accused minister Devananda of opening fire that killed one person and injured four others in Chennai in November 1986.
A Madras high court bench comprising Chief Justice M. Y. Eqbal and justice T. S. Sivagnanam adjourned the hearing till Monday.
According to M. Radhakrishnan, petitioner’s counsel, “This writ petition came up for hearing before the honourable Chief Justice and the honourable justice, the first bench of the Madras high court today”
“After hearing our arguments to the effect that even a citizen can arrest Mr. Douglas Devananda because he is a proclaimed offender and therefore the court should immediately direct the government to arrest Mr. Devananda, the honourable Chief Justice observed that this matter could be heard in Monday”.
However, minister Devananda maintains that he had been pardoned under the Indo-Sri Lanka Peace Agreement of 1987.