Vice chairperson and propaganda secretary of Eksath Lak Vanitha Peramuna, V.A. Harshani Sandaruwani, and several of her relatives and neighbours had been assaulted by thugs of minister S.B. Dissanayake in front of her Koswatte, Rajagiriya home on January 31.
The circumstances that had led to the incident had begun with one Keerthi Samarasinghe coming to live as a neighbour of Harshani.
The new neighbour has begun gathering garbage on the road in front of the house and setting it on fire, severely inconveniencing others.
Despite a complaint and police having warned him, the man on the day of the assault had again set fire to garbage on the road, to which the others had protested.
Thereafter, Samarasinghe and his wife had threatened the neighbours with death, about which they had complained to police on the emergency number.
However, he had brought a group of around 10 thugs, who had first assaulted a sister of Harshani with an iron bar, and then beaten up Harshani and other neighbours who had tried to intervene.
Three persons have been admitted to hospital with injuries.
Police had arrived only after several more calls, and at that time too, the thugs armed with iron bars had remained there, but they had not been arrested.
Later, Samarasinghe’s wife and her uncle had been arrested, and were given court bail as police had not objected.
It transpired during inquiries made later that Samarasinghe is a suspect in two murders at Rikillagaskada and had been caught while breaking into two jewellery shops.
Also, he had worked for minister S.B. Dissanayake and was a bodyguard of his brother Saliya Dissanayake during the recent polls.
Harshani has complained to the police, including the IGP, that her life as well as those of her neighbours are at risk due to the thugs remaining at large.