Image courtesy “We Live in Constant Fear”: Lack of Accountability for Police Abuse in Sri Lanka by Human Rights Watch.

The murder of George Floyd in the United States has in the past week resulted in a renewed focus on Police violence, torture, brutality and impunity. Coincidentally, two cases of Police brutality and violence – those of Kavinda Isuru and Thariq Ahamed – have received a lot of attention on social media in Sri Lanka, but unequally. Thariq’s case – of an autistic 14 year old whose brutal assault by the Police was captured on CCTV has received much more attention than Kavinda’s case – whose parents lodged a complaint at the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka last week that that his death inside the Mahara Prison was suspicious as his body showed clear signs of brutal assault and torture.

This podcast is anchored to the tweets by Ambika on torture and in particular the Report to the UN Committee Against Torture by the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka in 2016.

I spoke with Ambika Satkunanathan on these issues, anchored to content posted by her on the systemic or embedded nature of Police brutality in Sri Lanka, extending over many years. Ambika is an Open Society Fellow and was a Commissioner at the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka from October 2015 to March 2020.

Listen to the podcast below or directly on SoundCloud here.