World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Badurueliya Hospital to reopen after shutdown : Sri Lanka

December 27, 2013

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission

SRI LANKA: Badurueliya Hospital to be reopened after weeklong shutdown

In the early morning of December 27, the authorities addressed a large crowd of people protesting outside Badureliya District Hospital. They had come to support a Member of Parliament who was staging a hunger strike demanding the reopening of the hospital. The authorities announced to the crowd that the hospital would be reopened the next morning.

The hospital was closed down after the death of a local man. The man was taken to the hospital in critical condition and, according to his family and their neighbours, did not receive immediate medical attention. He died before any treatment was provided. The incident took place on December 17 2013. When the news of his death spread to the surrounding villages his neighbours gathered and protested peacefully. The hospital was closed down when the doctors went on strike in retaliation to the protest.

According to the son of the deceased, Mr. P.K. Caushaliya, he, along with some friends, took his father to the hospital at midnight on the 16th as his condition was serious. He took his father to the admissions desk. However, there was no one there to receive patients. He cried out to attract attention but only an orderly arrived. It was 40 minutes later that a doctor by the name of D.M.O. Nandakumara arrived. As the deceased had difficulty in breathing his son asked the doctor whether there was no one there to give emergency care. Dr. Nandakumara did not provide any emergency treatment but only instructed that the patient be admitted to the hospital.

Meanwhile, a Grama Sevaka and a policeman arrived. They seem to have been called by the doctor. These two officers started assaulting Caushaliya in front of his ailing father. The friends who had accompanied them intervened in an attempt to stop the commotion. However, the two officers forced Caushaliya and his friends into a police jeep and took them to the station. One of the officers, a man named Suriyaarachchi, said loudly, “These two fellows should be taken to the station and beaten, and thereafter be remanded for 14 days”. Caushaliya’s request to be at the hospital in order to assist his father was ignored.

Meanwhile, the father was transferred to Nagoda Hospital and there the doctors informed his relatives that it might be possible to save his life. Later the patient was declared dead. When the news of his death reached Badureliya, the villagers gathered to protest. They did not cause any damage to any persons or property.

The following day, December 17, the doctors did not report to work at Badureliya District Hospital in retaliation to the protest. Later, the nurses also joined in to support the doctors. The work of the hospital came to a standstill and there were no doctors or nurses to attend to the patients. This situation continued until midnight yesterday.

On December 25, a local Member of Parliament, Palitha Theverupperuma, started a hunger strike demanding the immediate reopening of the hospital. Crowds began to gather in support of the MP’s hunger strike. Meanwhile, some unknown persons attacked the MP’s vehicle, causing serious damage.

By the evening of December 26, larger crowds had gathered and, according to reports, there were approximately 3,000 people at the protest. It was at this stage that the authorities announced that the hospital would be reopened on December 27, today.

Many villagers expressed discontent with the way this hospital is being administered. They narrated many incidents to illustrate the negligence on the part of the doctors and the other staff of the hospital. In one case, a man who was brought to the hospital in a diabetic coma. The same doctor involved in the present case declared that man to be dead. The family took the man to another hospital where he was administered an injection, after which he regained consciousness.

That a hospital could be closed for over a week due to a protest following the death of one of the fellow villagers is an indication of the negligence on the part of the Health Ministry in administration. The government needs to launch an inquiry into this whole incident and take remedial action to avoid a recurrence.

# # #

About AHRC: The Asian Human Rights Commission is a regional non-governmental organisation that monitors human rights in Asia, documents violations and advocates for justice and institutional reform to ensure the protection and promotion of these rights. The Hong Kong-based group was founded in 1984.

Visit our new website with more features at

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Whaling: Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research In Defiance Of World Court Ruling

The ICR Today Filed Court Briefs Stating They Intend to Return to Antarctica to Hunt Whales in 2015-2016; Will Seek to Enjoin Other Sea Shepherd Entities from Obstructing Their Operations More>>

Ukraine: UN Urges 'Maximum Restraint' Amid Situation In East Ukraine

Deeply concerned by the deteriorating situation in eastern Ukraine, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for maximum restraint and appealed to all sides to work towards calming the situation, which has the 'growing potential' to ... More>>

United Nations: Children Can Now Lodge Complaints With The UN

GENEVA (14 April 2014) – United Nations child rights experts have hailed a new treaty that allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights. More>>

India: Election But A Ritual In Nation Lacking Rule Of Law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) congratulates the people of India for their participation to elect the 16th Lok Sabha. The process has attracted, as usual, considerable media attention across the world. Media claims the process to be 'the largest democratic ... More>>

Solomon Islands: Thousands Remain Affected After Flash Floods

An estimated 52,000 people remain affected in the worst-hit areas of Honiara and greater Guadalcanal following last week’s devastating floods which killed at least 23 people. More>>


World: Some 437,000 People Murdered Worldwide In 2012 - UN

Almost half a million people across the world lost their lives in 2012 as a result of intentional homicide, with the highest murder rates logged in the Americas and Africa, and the lowest in Europe, Asia and Oceania, the United Nations Office on ... More>>

Central African Republic:: Security Council Establishes UN Peacekeeping Mission

Deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation and ongoing human rights abuses in the Central African Republic (CAR), the Security Council today approved the establishment of a nearly 12,000-strong United Nations peacekeeping operation ... More>>


Parliament: NZ Sending Aid Flight To Solomons

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has announced further support for the response to severe flooding in Solomon Islands. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news