Death of former MP’s 16-y-o maid: Police seize male coworker’s phone

Sri Lanka’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has taken into custody a mobile phone of belonging to a male domestic aid at former minister Rishad Bathuideen’s private residence, police said, where a 16-year-old female domestic aid succumbed to burn injuries.

Police media spokesman Senior Deputy Inspector General (SDIG) Ajith Rohana said the CID will look for any deleted data from the male domestic aid’s mobile phone.

Two police teams were deployed on Monday (July 19) to record statements from the principal and vice principal of the Kiriwandala Tamil School in Puwakpitiya, Avissawella, where the girl had studied before they moved to Dayagama in Nuwara Eliya.

Meanwhile, the mother of the victim in a press conference held on Tuesday (July 20) said that the girl had informed her that a fellow male worker had assaulted her with a broom.

The child had also informed her that she did not want to work and wished to return home when she last contacted her, she said.

When inquired about the assault, the fellow male worker has said to her mother that he had beat the girl as she was not obeying the orders given by Bathiudeen’s wife.

The victim’s mother said she had asked Bathiudeen’s wife to go easy on the child as she was still minor.

“There is no way she would take her own life,” the mother said when asked whether the victim could’ve died by suicide.

“I asked from the madam (wife of Bathiudeen) and the PA of the house about this. They said my child might have caught fire when she tried to burn off a thread in her dress,” she said.

My child has come to the living room shouting for help while on fire. They had doused the fire using a carpet and put her in a fish tank in the house. They either did something to my child or some accident happened in that house,” the mother said.

She further said she accepts the blame for sending a minor to work and said many poor mothers make the same mistake.

“For that, I will accept any punishment given to me. Give some punishment for the people who did this crime too,” she said.

The 16-years-and-eight-months-old girl was admitted to the National Hospital with burn injuries on July 03 where she succumbed to the injuries last Thursday (15).

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