By Easwaran Rutnam
The government says it will use former LTTE chief arms procurer Kumaran Padmanathan alias KP as a “state witness” if the need arises.
Government spokesman and media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told The Sunday Leader that there are provisions in the legal system to use a suspect as a state witness. The Minister said that while KP is now in the “custody” of the defence ministry he may not end up in court if it is felt that he can further assist the government to crack LTTE overseas operations. He explained that as a ‘state witness’ a suspect can be used by a government to obtain information and investigate the bigger picture.
Following the arrest of KP the government had initially said that he will be produced in court and tried for his involvement in LTTE crimes.
However KP is yet to be produced in court, despite his arrest in 2009, and this has resulted in several opposition groups being critical of the government over this.
Minister Rambukwella however recalled that even people like Minister Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan (Karuna) and Eastern Province Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan (Pillayan) have not be produced in court despite their past connection with the LTTE.
He insisted that in some instances the government cannot go back to the past if there is something positive to gain from the present.