Civil society activists continue to denounce the police crackdown on a peaceful protest against president Ranil Wickremesinghe’s recent visit to Jaffna.
Eighteen protestors, including MP S. Gajendran, were arrested and subsequently given bail.
The government is violating the constitutionally-guaranteed right of the people to hold protests.
It only showed the repression of the state, said unionist Joseph Stalin.
There was no court order against holding the protest in question 500 metres away from the ceremony attended by the president, he said.
However, police media spokesman Nihal Talduwa rejected disputed it, and said protestors violated that requirement and were taken into custody on charges of contempt of court, violating court order, illegal assembly etc.
Political and human rights activist Swastika Arulingam said the agitation was completely peaceful, and was held within the constitutional and legal provisions.
An egoistic president is using the military and the police as a personal property in both the north and the south, she charged.
President Wickremesinghe was in Jaffna to open an Indian government funded cultural centre.