A husband who had opted to stand at Lipton Circus instead of serving a long jail term for the attempted murder of his wife, was imposed a lighter sentence by the Colombo High Court, when he promised court to give up drinks and love his wife hereafter.
High Court Judge Rohini Perera severely warned the accused not to drink or loiter on the streets after dusk, and ordered 3-months community service, at 3-hours work per day.
The accused, K. Kumarasiri Perera of Panchikawatte, had pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of his wife, K.B. Nirmala Chandani, by stabbing, and causing injuries to his mother-in-law, on December 28, 2002. When suggested by the Court, the accused had opted to stand at Lipton Circus with a board with the words ?I am a Drunkard- I am a man who beats the wife?, instead of the due punishment of 23-years rigorous imprisonment.
However when the case was taken up before Court the High Court Judge stated that it would serve no purpose imposing such punishment as the accused was not going to learn a lesson. The High Court Judge warned him not to drink or assault the wife hereafter or he would be sentenced to 5- years rigorous imprisonment. Court also cautioned the two sureties, the mother and a brother-in-law, not to allow the accused to commit a similar offence, as they too would be punished if he does.
According to police, the accused, a three-wheel driver addicted to liquor, had regular quarrels with his wife, and on the said date, he had come home around midnight after drinks. When the wife, who was with their ten-day-old child, had started to scold him for drinking, the accused had stabbed the wife and later attacked the mother-in-law, who had scolded him too. After the incident, the man had runaway from the area and was arrested by the police.
When the accused was produced before Court, he had pleaded guilty to the charges and Court had informed him that the minimum punishment for the offence was 23-years rigorous imprisonment. However, at this stage, the wife, who was present in court, had started crying, and Court had suggested an alternative punishment, which was to stand at the Lipton Circus in Colombo, from 9 am to 4.30 pm, for six months, with a board with the words ?I am a Drunkard-I am a Man who beats his wife?. The accused had opted for the later punishment, and on the order of Court, had brought a board with the relevant words, to Court yesterday.
State Counsel Azad Navavi appeared for the Prosecution. Attorney-at-Law Premani Pothupitiya appeared for the Accused.