Sri Lanka’s controversial police chief Pujith Jayasundara, who is in trouble mandatory meditation for men and women in the service, is in deeper water this time after taking on a senior minister of the government.
Jayasundara addressed staff of the Criminal Investigations Department and accused them of leaking a video of him roughing up staff who had failed to comply with his order to meditate.
The leaked video showed Jayasundara flying into a rage and lifting the lift operator by his collar and making intimidating gestures towards a police woman. The police chief on Friday denied he threatened to rape her and insisted that all he said was: “kelawanawa” (I’ll fix you).
In his address on Friday, Jayasundara said the CID had passed the CCTV footage to a very senior government minister who in turn had passed it onto a highly popular London-based news website.
Jayasundara said the minister was all out to have him removed, but he was confident that he had the full support of the President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.
However, political sources said both the President and the Prime Minister as well as Speaker Karu Jayasuriya were extremely unhappy with Jayasundara’s conduct and had already put him on notice.
Speaker Jayasuriya, who is the chairman of the Constitutional Council which suggested Jayasundara for the top job in April last year, had also asked the IGP to stop making a fool of himself.
He was upbraided for attempting to sing on a public stage during a nationally televised ceremony.
Since then, he had stopped singing, but earlier this month, got a Deputy Inspector General to sign a play list chosen by him and broadcast over Rupavahini.
However, Jayasundara’s video intimidating CID staff had more traction in social media.
The leaked video became a sensation on social media, but police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera had at the time denied his boss assaulted the lift operator and insisted that there was no complaint against the police chief.
However, it later turned out that the victim had indeed complained to his CID bosses as well as the Police Commission which is yet to announce what action it had taken.
It is learnt that the minister who was publicly accused by Jayasundara on Friday is to raise the issue with both the Speaker as well as the police commission.