Case Reference/File No [1987] 1 SriLR 293
Case Name Nallanayagam v. Gunatilake and others
Court Supreme Court
Date of judgement 24th and 25th July 1985
Judges Wanasundera J
Colin-Thome J
Atukorale J
Parties Petitioner



1st respondent – Gunatilake
2nd respondent –H.L. Piyasena, Co-ordinating Officer
3rd respondent – De Crusz, Assistant Superintendent of Police, Kalmunai
4th respondent – Kumarasamy Krishnadasan, Headquarters Inspector, Police Station, Batticoloa.
Keywords Articles 13(1),(2) and (4) of the Constitution – charge of spreading rumors of the Government – Regulations 19(1) and (2) of Emergency Regulations
Head note  
Brief facts The petitioner was arrested at his home on 22.05.1985 without being informed the reasons for such arrest. He was told however that the 2nd respondent wanted him at the police station Batticaloa. The next day he was brought to the Criminal Investigation Department and his statement was recorded and was informed that he was being investigated on a charge of spreading false information and bringing the government into disrepute. Thereafter the petitioner was kept in custody at the police station, Slave Island. The petitioner seeks relief from the court for alleged infringements of Articles 13(1), (2) and (4) of the Constitution. It was contented that the petitioner was produced before a Magistrate only after three days from the thirty days after his arrest going against proviso to Regulation 19 (1) of Emergency Regulations. In light of the ‘procedure established by law’ under Article 13(1) of the Constitution, to be read with the proviso being regulation 19 (1) of Emergency Regulations, the Court held that fundamental rights of the petitioner protected under Article 13(1) and (2) of the Constitution have been violated.
Judicial Precedence The Court was of the view that Article 13(2) postulates a salutary principle safeguarding the life and liberty of the suspect and must exactly be complied with by the Executive. The provision cannot be overlooked or dismissed as of little consequence or as a minor matter.
Legislation Title The Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka 1978
Area Articles 13(1),(2) and (4) of the Constitution; Regulations 19 (1) and (2) of Emergency Regulations