Victims of Welikada prison riot urged to provide information to receive compensation

Victims of Welikada prison riot urged to provide information to receive compensation

The Ministry of Prison Reforms has announced that the relatives of the deceased and those who were injured in the shooting at the Welikada Prison in 2012 should contact the Ministry immediately if they have not received compensation yet.

Minister of Prison Reforms, Rehabilitation, Resettlement and Hindu Religious Affairs D.M. Swaminathan said compensation is being given to the victims or the relatives of the deceased now and compensation has already been awarded to families of 10 deceased prisoners and five injured.

However, the Ministry has not yet received the information of 16 victims.

The Ministry in a statement said the compensation can be paid before December this year if those victims have provided the relevant information expeditiously.

The government according to a cabinet paper presented by the Minister has decided to pay Rs. 2 million to the family of a prisoner shot dead and Rs. 500,000 for a prisoner who was injured.

The deadly riot at the country’s largest and most crowded prison on November 9th, 2012 was of an enormous magnitude resulting in deaths of 27 inmates, and injuries to a prison officer and 20 prisoners.

The riot occurred when prisoners took control of the prison after objecting to a search by the Special Task Force who entered the prison to nab hidden arms, drugs and mobile phones in the prison premises.

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has initiated an investigation into the incident under the directive of Inspector General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundara.

The IGP is scheduled to handover the report of the investigation to the Minister at the end of December to charge the persons responsible for the deaths of inmates to justice.

The Minister has promised to prosecute the perpetrators regardless of their status.