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“My highest regard for the Judiciary” – Rishad
• Contempt application against Rishad settled in CA
• “Win-win for both!” – Zuhair PC

Rishad Bathiudeen (Minister of Industry and Commerce-right) and MM Zuhair (President’s Counsel representing Minister Bathiudeen-left) address the special press briefing in Colombo on 14 March.

Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen expressed his highest regard for the Judiciary. “I express my highest regard for the Judiciary. I regret for the unauthorised use of the telephone” said Minister Bathiudeen on 14 March in Colombo.

Minister Bathiudeen was addressing a special press briefing at his residence in Colombo 7 on the afternoon of 14 March.

Accordingly, the Contempt of Court application (CA Application 205/2012) filed against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen (MP) was settled in Court of Appeal on 14 March 2012.

MM Zuhair (President’s Counsel representing Minister Bathiudeen), stated: “The case arose out of two telephone calls alleged to have been made from a phone registered under Minister Bathiudeen’s name on 17 July, 2012 and 18 July 2012 to the then Magistrate of Mannar. The Minister who pleaded not guilty to charges maintained the position that these calls were never made by him and the telephone was used in an unauthorised manner. In a joint motion filed by the petitioners and Minister Bathiudeen, the Petitioners moved to terminate the court proceedings today, 14 March 2014, having accepted that the use of the telephone was unauthorised. In other words, a telephone registered in the respondent Minister’s name had been used without his knowledge or authority.

 

The petitioners have thereby accepted that the Respondent Minister had not called or used the phone for the purpose alleged in the case. The Minister however expressed his regret for the unauthorised use of the telephone. Minister furthermore expressed his highest esteem and regard for the judiciary. The Court of Appeal accordingly terminated all further proceedings in the case, of which the petitioners were Geoffry Alagaratnam (President’s Counsel), Dr Sunil Cooray (Attorney at Law), Lal Wijenayake (Attorney at Law), Chandrapala Kumarage (Attorney at Law), E.C. Feldano (Attorney at Law, & President, Mannar Bar Association), Mrs Malani Manatunge (Attorney at Law) and A.S.M. Perera (President’s Counsel).”

MM Zuhair (President’s Counsel representing Minister Bathiudeen) clarified: “This is a win-win for both parties. The court case on the violent incidents in Mannar is not over and will continue. Since it is on-going, no comments on that.”

Also present on the occasion was NM Shaheid (Senior Attorney) who also represented Minister
Bathiudeen.

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