The FR petition by 13 artistes and civil society activists was submitted to the Supreme Court by lawyers Supun Vishwabuddhi Hewagamage and Lakshan Dias today (25).
The six respondents cited include the finance minister, the excise commissioner general, attorney general and the secretary to the cabinet.
The petitioners are Hearath Mudiyanselage Nadeeka kumari, Murugan Kumari,
Tesika kamali Ekanayake, Galle Kankanamghe Indrani Kusum, Harshani Thushara Paranavitana, Ruvini Rawindika Thalpawila, Muthukudaa Arachchilage Priyan Ranjith Wijebandara Ihalagama, Kankanam Kapuge Saman Kumara, Liyanaarachchige Viraj Liyanaarachchi, Kodagoda Haritha Perera, Kodagoda Nimali Champika Serasinghe, Palihenage Don Saranapala and Udagedara Mudiyanselage Don Jehan Srikantha Appuhami.
The petitioners state that under the new gazette notification, even women cannot consume alcohol at a wedding or any function in a reception hall or a Hotel which is a public place while men are allowed to enjoy as they like which is a clear discrimination under Article 12 (2) of the Constitution.
They state that men and women both are equal before law and there cannot be two different treatment and rights for the different gender.
The petitioners state that women are not governed by any other party or person they have wisdom and maturity as adults to decide what’s good for them.
Petitioners state that their intention is not to promote consumption of Alcohol but stand for the equality and right to choose equal to men.
They seek a declaration that the action of the respondents has violated the fundamental rights guaranteed under the Articles 12 (2) of the constitution in relation to gender equality, an interim order to suspend the re-impose of liquor ban on women by the gazette notifications No 2054-42 of 04/2018 dated 18/01/2018 among others.