The petitioner and 3 others were transporting household furniture in their lorry, from Colombo to Katuwana. As they reached Habarana at night, he decided to spend the night at Habarana and parked the lorry on the side of the road. The petitioner had a permit to transport obtained under the Forest Ordinance, although a permit was not necessary The petitioner claims that he obtained same out of an abundance of caution valid from 1 p.m. on 18.9.03 to 12 noon 19.9.03. Later in the night the 1st respondent came up to the lorry and wanted to inspect the furniture, and had demanded a bribe which was not given. The petitioner was thereafter taken to the Police Station and was arrested for the illegal transportation of furniture. When the petitioner denied the charge, he was assaulted, and later produced before the Magistrate. The petitioner pleaded guilty and was fined. The lorry was later released by the Magistrate. The petitioner complains of violation of Article 11, by being subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman, degrading treatment or punishment.
The judgement was the reasons stated above, I allow the application and grant the declaration prayed for in prayer “b” of the prayer of the petitioner that the petitioner’s fundamental rights guaranteed by Article VI of the Constitution has been infringed. The 1st respondent is directed to pay a sum of Rs. 100,000/- as compensation to the petitioner and the State will pay a sum of Rs.50,000/- as costs.
The Registrar is directed to send copies of the judgment to the Secretary, Ministry of Defence and Inspector Genera! of Police, for their information and necessary action.