Lawyers in the northern province today (03) stayed away from their work and staged a protest to demand a proper investigation into the threats allegedly received by former Mullaitivu magistrate T. Saravanaraja.
Taking to the streets of Jaffna, Kilinochchi, Mannar, Vavuniya and Mullaitivu, they also called for the safety of judges and the independence of the judiciary.
As a result of the strike by lawyers, court cases were postponed.
The association of lawyers in Mullaitivu said they would stay away from work until their demands are met.
Citing “threat to his life and lot of stress”, Saravanaraja tendered a resignation letter to the secretary of the Judicial Services Commission on 23 September.
The JSC is due to appoint a new magistrate in his place.
Justice minister comments
Justice minister Wijedasa Rajapakshe has told BBC Sinhala Service that he has looked into the matter.
If he had threats to his life, he could well have issued a warrant, said the minister, adding that Saravanaraja had been the respondent in five cases pending before the court of appeal.
He had gone to meet the attorney general to obtain advice with regard to these cases, said Rajapakshe.
A week earlier, he had come to Colombo, sold his car and met the ambassadors of two western countries, before resigning, he added.