The Bar Council of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has called upon the Government of Sri Lanka to immediately withdraw the Anti-Terrorism Bill and the Online Safety Bill which were published in the Gazettes issued on 15th and 18th September 2023 respectively, and not to proceed with the said Bills.
At a meeting of the Bar Council held on Saturday (23), it was unanimously resolved that both Bills seriously impinge on the liberty and freedom of the people and will have a serious impact on democracy and the rule of law in the country, BASL said in a statement.
“It is observed that both Bills have been introduced without due consultation with the stakeholders including the BASL. Further, the BASL’s observations on the previous version of the Anti-Terrorism Bill have also not been considered,” it said.
The Bar Association of Sri Lanka has called upon the Government to have a meaningful consultation with the relevant stakeholders including the BASL and to take into consideration their concerns prior to proceeding to Gazette such Bills, which it says have a serious impact on the community at large.