The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) yesterday filed a motion in the Supreme Court, asking the latter to take up on Monday for interim relief the Fundamental Rights (FR) petition lodged on behalf of the citizens over the continuous violation of the fundamental rights due to the ongoing shortages.
The Petitioners including BASL President Saliya Peiris PC and three of its office bearers moved the court to consider the case as a matter of extreme urgency and national importance and have this case listed for support for interim relief on 4 July.
The Petitioners also sought a permanent Bench of the SC be appointed to hear and determine this case, as there is a need for continuity in the proceedings due to the critical importance of the matters referred to in the Petition.
The Petitioners have cited 43 Respondents including the Prime Minister, Cabinet of Ministers and secretaries to various ministries.
The Petitioners stated that since the date of filing of the application on 24 March, adequate and timely steps have not been taken by one or more of the Respondents to ensure an uninterrupted and continuous supply of petrol, diesel, kerosene oil, LP Gas, electricity and medicines which are vital to the life and survival of the people of Sri Lanka. As a result, people have been compelled to languish in long queues and are subject to fuel quotas.
The motion filed yesterday said that one or more of the Respondents have failed to duly and responsibly inform the public of the measures, if any, that have been taken to alleviate the continuing and unbearable hardship and suffering experienced by the public, due to the continued unavailability of fuel, LP Gas, electricity and medicines.
It stated that the fundamental rights of the people of Sri Lanka including that of the Petitioners are being continuously violated by the action and/or inaction of the Respondents, and that unless immediate steps are taken to ensure the uninterrupted supply of fuel, LP Gas, electricity, food and medicines, the fundamental rights of the Petitioners and the people of Sri Lanka including their right to life would continue to be infringed.
The BASL is represented by Dr. Kanag Iswaran PC, Uditha Egalahewa PC, Suren Gnanaraj, Pulasthi Hewamanne, Lakshmanan Jeyakumar, and Niranjan Arulpragasam instructed by G.G. Arulpragasam.