Army denies harassing student

The army has denied reports that a female student had been hospitalized after being allegedly subjected to harassment at the Sri Lanka Air Force Training Centre, Diyatalawa.

Army spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya says no student undergoing leadership training at Diyatalawa or any other camp has been subjected to harassment as alleged.

He said that the student in question had been interviewed by the Commanding Officer of the Camp after her father, who is a government servant, had spoken to him regarding alleged inconveniences she is facing during training.

“During the interview the said student has informed the following difficulties that she is faced with. She has to work according to a time schedule and has to wait for everyone in the daily routine, which according to her is an inconvenience. She has a rash in her foot and hence unable to wear shoes. The commanding officer has then asked whether there has been any harrassment and the student has assured that there had been none what so ever,” the army spokesman said.

Then the Commanding Officer has explained that when one works in a team one has to do things together as a team and for that one may have to wait for others to gather. Waiting 5-10 minutes should not be considered an inconvenience, that is part of diversity that all are not able to wash, eat, or get dressed as fast as another.

“On the matter of not being able to wear shoes, she has been excused from wearing until a rash that she was diagnosed with is cured,” he said.

He also said that this morning, after news reports of the student being harassed was published an inquiry was made from all the students (approx 700) and all confirmed that they have no problems either in the facilities provided or training imparted by the relevant authorities, Brigadier Wanigasooriya said.