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Resolution to Appoint Parliament Select Committee to Probe Causes for Easter Sunday Violence Passed with Amendment to Empower PSC to Investigate MP’s and Governors with Alleged Terrorist Links also.

By Ajith Alahakoon

The resolution for appointing a Parliament Select Committee (PSC) to probe the causes of the Easter Sunday terror attacks which killed over 250 persons and caused injuries to around 500 others was passed in Parliament yesterday (22) with an amendment.

UNP National List MP Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne PC brought the amendment to give the PSC powers to investigate any parliamentarian or governor who had allegedly extended support to terrorists responsible for the Easter Sunday carnage.

Representing the UNP, UPFA, TNA and JVP, 40 MPs had presented resolution requesting an appointment of a PSC to ascertain as to why authorities had failed to prevent the terror attacks despite having advance intelligence on the impending strikes.

The PSC will find out as to whether law enforcement authorities had received intelligence reports relating to such attacks, prior thereto, whether the relevant authorities had taken adequate measures to prevent and/ or mitigate such attacks, whether there were deficiencies in the State machinery that led to the inability to prevent or mitigate the effects of such attacks, any other factors which contributed to such terrorist attacks, what action should be taken to prevent such attacks in future and any other matters connected or incidental thereto.

The PSC would not consist of more than 12 members. The Chair and the members would be nominated by Speaker Karu Jayasuriya.

The PSC has the power to fix its quorum, send for persons, papers or records, may order any person to attend before Parliament or before such Committee and to produce any paper, book, record or document in the possession or under the control of such person.

It also has powers to verify or otherwise ascertain by oral examination of witnesses and examine witnesses upon oath or affirmation which the Chair of the Committee or a person specially authorized for that purpose may administer, conduct the meetings, in any parts of the country, outside the Parliament, obtain the services of specialists and experts in the relevant fields to assist the Committee; and make interim reports from time to time and to sit notwithstanding any adjournment of Parliament.

The PSC will present its Report within three months of the date of its first sitting or such other or further time period as Parliament may grant.

Courtesy:The Island