Jun 17, 2019

Protest demanding release of author Shakthika

A protest was held opposite the Colombo Fort Railway station today (17 June) demanding the release of author Shakthika Sathkumara.

Shakthika has been in remand custody for allegedly penning a short story named "Ardha" which was viewed as being derogatory to the Buddhist faith.

However the author has written 33 books and majority have been recognized at various award ceremonies. It is significant that for majority of these books' prologues were written by award winning Buddhist Theros and he had been recognized with Sambuddha Jayanthi award as well.

The protesters comprising representatives of rights groups held slogans questioning the freedom given to the science of arts.

The author has been arrested under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

Suspects arrested under the ICCPR could face upto ten years of rigorous imprisonment. They can only be granted bail by the High Court.