There is justifiable suspicion that the conspiracy claim is either an attempt by the joint opposition to bring the president and the prime minister on the collusion course in order to topple the government, or a media hype by the government itself to divert the public attention away from the worst ever depreciation of the Sri Lankan Rupee.
On September 15, Namal Kumara of the Anti-Corruption Force complained to the CID about this alleged murder conspiracy.
CID’s submissions to court
At a related court hearing, the CID informed Colombo Fort magistrate Lanka Jayaratne about a suspect, who is an Indian national.
According to that suspect, the conspiracy was to murder president Sirisena, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa as well as former president Mahinda Rajapaksa and his family members.
Arrest of the Indian suspect
The CID also said Namal Kumara has informed them that a person who spoke English and Tamil only, had visited his home on September 19 and on the following day.
On a complaint, the Warakapola police sent a team and arrested the man in question, identified as M. Thomas, under the prevention of terrorism act and he is being detained for interrogation.
He is accused of not informing the police about the murder conspiracy.
What the suspect says
He has told the police that he saw, through the media, that Namal Kumara had called a media briefing and exposed the VVIP murder conspiracy, and since he knew about it too, he had gone to his home to meet him.
The Indian has also said that he did not get an opportunity, although he had gone several times to the homes of Mahinda Rajapaksa and MP Wimal Weerawansa to inform them about the conspiracy.
The CID brought him to Colombo and questioned him about the claim.
In reply, he has said that he had come to believe the existence of such a conspiracy, after reading newspapers and watching television in Sri Lanka.
The CID has so far failed to provide any concrete evidence.
A resident of Kerala state, Thomas had come to Sri Lanka in March 2017, and despite the expiration of his visa, he had gone to stay in a room at Thewatte in Ragama.
He is unemployed.
Indian high commission to cooperate in probe
A spokesman for the Indian high commission says they had come to know about the Thomas’ arrest and treated it as a serious mater.
Based upon the limited information provided by Sri Lanka, authorities in India have been asked to investigate the matter, said the spokesman.
Investigations so far have revealed that the suspect has a history of an unstable mind since 2000.
The spokesman said the Indian high commission would assist and cooperate in the investigation by Sri Lanka.