For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya
The Mirihana Police bans photographing: Who’s Law?
Police attempted to prevent a Sunday Island staff journalist from taking photographs of the Jubilee Post claiming that “Prior permission had to be obtained from the police station, before any photographs of the post were taken”.
Boasting of a similar previous occasion of similar dissent the traffic Policeman who bore the number 71651 claimed that he had earlier insisted a group of university students obtain approval from the police station before taking photographs. The policeman, joined by another constable attempted to bully the journalist who in return insisted they arrest him if he was able to cite the part of the law that he was breaking.
PC 71651 insisted that the journalist detail where he was from to which he had claimed that his national identity card was sufficient attestation to his citizenship which was more than sufficient. When the journalist had finally mentioned that he was indeed from the Sunday Island, he together with his colleague made a hasty retreat.
One wonders how much excess manpower and resources the Mirihana police are loaded with to be able to provide security to statues, pillars and posts. The policeman claimed ‘Gongale Banda’ whose effigy has been erected meters from the Jubilee post, could also not be photographed without prior permission.
The Sunday island wonders why the Mirihana police is providing such elaborate security measures to the concrete pole planted by Her majesty Queen Victoria ‘Empress of India’.