The Sri Lanka Army, consequent upon Sri Lanka Corps of Military Police (SLCMP) investigations, conducted into an Army officer’s involvement in the abduction of a civilian at Paniady, Norochcholai in late June 2021 owing to a long-running personal dispute between two neighbours, after a General Court Martial has cashiered the Captain rank Officer from service, effective from March 30, 2022.
The SLCMP upon completion of its Special Investigation Unit (SIU) inquiry proceedings on July 12, 2021 determined that Captain Omattage Nishantha Madushanka Perera of 22 Vijayabahu Infantry Regiment was solely responsible and guilty of conveyance of instructions for abduction of the said civilian at Paniady.
On hearing of the involvement of Army personnel and subsequent arrest of a soldier on June 30, 2021, General Shavendra Silva, Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Army wanted a full inquiry be conducted into the incident after dispatching a team of SLCMP Special Investigation Unit to assist Norochcholai Police investigations. The Army within a few days handed over all suspected Army personnel, including the Captain to the Norochcholai Police for onward action in full compliance with the civil law.
As per provisions No: 17 of 1949 of the Army Act, a General Court Martial, comprised of four Senior Officers, including the Judge Advocate General of the Army, related to ‘conduct prejudicial to military discipline while serving’ under the Section 129 (1) was convened on 27 December 2021 against this Captain and its hearings concluded on 10 March 2022.
The General Court Martial proceedings unanimously decided that the Captain in question was guilty of the punishable charge, and the unanimous verdict of the General Court Martial was confirmed by the Commander of the Army on 30 March 2022.Similarly, disciplinary action process against the involvement of soldiers in the said act is still underway.