Former Chief Justice J.S.Verma, who was to arrive in Colombo late on Friday heading an international fact-finding mission to assess the legal issues involved in the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, has cancelled his visit.
“I have decided to cancel,” he said when The Hindu contacted him over phone. On speculation that his Sri Lankan visa was revoked, he said there was no such issue.
The delegation has been constituted by the International Bar Association, and was mandated to investigate and report on Parliament’s actions on the impeachment issue, and if there were anomalies and transgressions.
Acting on a resolution passed by parliament on January 11 with two-thirds majority, President Mahinda Rajapaksa on January 13 dismissed Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. Before the impeachment debate took place in Parliament, the Courts had declared null and void a Parliamentary Select Committee report, on which the impeachment motion was based.
But a new Chief Justice was sworn in. Ms.Bandaranayake’s last public statement was that she remained Chief Justice of Sri Lanka.