For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya
07 May 2011
By Ananda Weerasuriya
Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa was ordered by the Mount Lavinia District Court to appear in court to give evidence in the defamation suit he had filed against the Sunday Leader newspaper.
Additional District Judge France Gunawardena informed the counsel appearing for Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to notice their client to appear on August 15 and 16 to give evidence on his allegations against the newspaper.
Mr. Rajapaksa had charged that articles published under the headlines “Mig Deal Crash Lands on Government” on July 15, 2007, “Lid Blown on Ghost Company that did the MIG Deal” on July 29, 2007, “Who profited from the MIG deal” on August 5, 2007 and “MIG deal crash lands on Defence Ministry” on September 2, 2007 were defamatory of him, and has demanded Rs. 10 million in damages from the Leader Publications.
When the case was taken up counsel A. M. V. Ali Sabry instructed by Sanath Wijewardene appeared for the plaintiff, while Counsel M. Sumanthiran instructed by Athula Ranagala appeared for Leader Publications.