Sri Lankan refugee in Tiruchi threatens to commit suicide

04THPOLICE_1710166fA Sri Lankan national lodged in the special refugee camp in Tiruchi threatened to commit suicide along with his family on Friday, giving tense moments to State authorities. K. Dhayabararaj has been demanding his release from the camp claiming that he is innocent and has no criminal case pending against him in Sri Lanka.

Even as security agencies assured his family that the release of Mr. Dhayabararaj was pending with the government, the refugee fell ill and was rushed to the Government Hospital late evening. His condition was said to be stable.

In March this year, Mr. Dhayabararaj alleged that his wife Udayakala and children were illegally detained for several months in a special quarantine camp at Rameswaram in Ramanathapuram district. After The Hindu published a report, the State government ordered their release and even allotted a house in the open camp for refugees in Mandapam. However, Mr. Dhayabararaj was not released.

“When my family came to see me today, the authorities told her that there was no possibility of my release from the camp in the near future. Threatening to commit suicide, she threw her mobile phone and left in a huff with the three children. I have no other option but to commit suicide…,” the refugee said.

Special Deputy Collector (Refugee Camps) S. Natarajan said the inmate’s family was told about the status of his release on Friday. “He ran into a room and locked himself. Sensing trouble, we asked his wife to persuade him to come out. He spoke in a high pitch and started shivering…an ambulance was called in to shift him to the hospital,” he said, adding that the release of refugees from the special camp would be considered reviewed by an advisory board that reviews cases once in three months.

Mr. Dhayabararaj refugee gave a letter to the camp officials that his family might take the extreme step if he was not released. He also threatened to go on an indefinite fast. (Courtesy The Hindu)