The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) says a committee it has appointed to study the anti-terrorism bill finds certain provisions in the document are in violation of citizens’ fundamental rights.

The BASL appointed the committee consisting of senior legal experts to review the bill gazetted on March 22, 2023.

It said in a statement the said committee has observed that certain provisions, inter alia, clauses 3,4,10,11,13,14,15,16,28,30,31,36,82,83,84,85, and 86 of the bill infringe upon the principles of the criminal justice system and are in contravention of the legal rights of the citizens.

The committee is also of the view that the provisions stipulated in the said bill violate the fundamental rights enumerated under Chapter III of the constitution, especially in light of article 14 of the constitution.

In view of the recommendations of the committee, the BASL said it will be making representations to the Ministry of Justice and all other stakeholders, requesting that amendments be made to the bill, in compliance with the law.

In order to protect the rights of the citizens, in the event the bill is placed in the order paper before parliament in the current form, BASL said it would take steps in law to challenge the bill in the appropriate forum.


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