A week ago, the Supreme court of Sri Lanka ordered the defense secretary to remove all permanent road blocks in the city of Colombo. Supreme court issued the order after hearing a FR petition filed by a civilian. This controversial court verdict which was subject to much debate, has nevertheless been implemented and most (if not all) permanent check points in Colombo have now been removed.
Today (7th) another restriction was imposed by the supreme court in a hearing related to the FR petition. According to the latest court verdict, security forces (excluding police) are prohibited from searching houses between 9PM and 6AM. If any searches are to be made during this time, security forces should be accompanied by a police officer from the appropriate police division.
Although the removal of road blocks have minimized the disturbances caused to civilian life, it is needless to say that both the above decisions have threatened national security to some degree. Currently the security forces are forced to use random roadblocks to check vehicles inbound to Colombo. Success of this method is arguable. And the latest court decision will prevent them from carrying out rapid search operations based on real time intelligence information. If the LTTE operatives use this window of opportunity to smuggle explosives into Colombo, consequences will undoubtedly be far worse than having permanent road blocks in place.