Media workers killed/disappeared in 2010

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Prageeth Ekneligoda

Designation: Journalist/Political activist

Disappeared on: 24 January 2010 in Colombo

Additional remarks: A cartoonist and a political analyst attached to Lankaenews website. He reportedly went missing on his way home after work.

Media workers killed/disappeared in 2007

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: S. Raveendran

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 12 February 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Worked as a printing machine operator at Jaffna Tamil daily 'Namathu Eezhanadu'. Killed by unidentified gunmen who broke into his house located in Kopay, Jaffna.


2. Name: Subramaniam Ramachandran

Designation: Journalist

Disappeared on: 15 February 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Vadamaradchi region correspondent for two Tamil dailies, 'Yarl Thinakural' and 'Valampuri'. He was abducted by an armed group in heavily militarized Karaveddy in Vadamaradchi.


3. Name: Chandrabose Suthakar

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 16 April 2007 in Vavunia

Additional remarks:  A regular contributor to many Tamil publications including Eelanatham, Veliccham, Eezhanadu, Nilam, Kalachuvadu and Veerakesari. Edited a handwritten magazine named 'Nilam' (The Ground). Killed by four unidentified gunmen who entered his house located in Thirunavatkulam, Vavunia.


4. Name: Selvarasah Rajeevarman

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 29 April 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Worked as a trainee staff reporter for Jaffna Tamil daily 'Uthayan' and was formerly attached to 'Thinakkural' and 'Namathu Eezhanadu'. He was shot to death by assasins riding in a motorbike at Naavalar Road, Jaffna. 


5. Name: Sahadevan Nilakshan

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 01 August 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: A part time journalist and a media student at Jaffna University Media Research and Training Center. Worked as one of the editors of a popular student magazine published by Jaffna District Student Federation. Armed men riding a motorcycle opened fire killing him in front of his house.


6. Name: Anthonypillai Sherin Siththiranjan

Designation: Media Worker

Disappeared on: 05 November 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: A newspaper delivery agent attached to Jaffna Tamil daily 'Yarl Thinakkural'. He went missing while on his way to distribute the newspapers. 


7. Name: Vadivelu Nirmalaraj

Designation: Media worker

Disappeared on: 17 November 2007 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Worked as a proofreader for Jaffna Tamil daily 'Uthayan'. Went missing while on his way home after finishing his night shift at the newspaper office.


8. Name: Isaivizhi Chempian (Subhajini)

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 27 November 2007 in Kilinochchi

Additional remarks: Worked as a radio presenter attached to Tamil rebel radio station 'Voice of Tigers'. Killed when the radio station came under a deadly attack by Sri Lankan Air Force, which was  condemned by the UNESCO and the Reporters Without Borders.


9. Name: Suresh Limbiyo

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 27 November 2007 in Kilinochchi

Additional remarks: A technical desk officer at Tamil rebel radio station 'Voice of Tigers'. Killed when the radio station came under a deadly attack by Sri Lankan Air Force, which was  condemned by the UNESCO and the Reporters Without Borders.


10. Name: T.Tharmalingam

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 27 November 2007 in Kilinochchi

Additional remarks: Worked attached to Tamil rebel radio station 'Voice of Tigers'. Killed when the radio station came under a deadly attack by Sri Lankan Air Force, which was  condemned by the UNESCO and the Reporters Without Borders.


11. Name: W.Gunasinghe

Desingnation: Journalist

Aassassinated on: 05 December 2007 in Kebithigollewa

Additional remarks: Worked as a provincial correspondent for Sinhala daily 'Divaina'. Killed by a roadside bomb attack on a passenger bus in Kebithigollewa, in the north-central province. The bombing was believed to have been the work of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

Media workers killed in 2006

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Subramaniam Sugirtharajan

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 24 January 2006 in Trincomalee

Additional remarks: Worked as the Trincomalee correspondent for "Sudar Oli" newspaper. He was instrumental in exposing the involvement of Sri Lanka military in the execution style killing of five students in Trincomalee on the 02 of January 2006


2. Name: S. T. Gananathan

Designation: Patron - Tamil News and Information Centre

Assassinated on: 01 February 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: He was shot dead in close proximity to a Sri Lankan Military camp at Mampalam Junction in Ariyalai, Jaffna.


3. Name: Bastian George Sagayathas (Suresh)

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 03 May 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Worked as the Circulation Manager at Jaffna daily "Uthayan". Five armed men, suspected of belonging to the paramilitary EPDP, stormed the newspaper office on the world Press Freedom Day and fired at random, killing him along with another employee.


4. Name: Rajaratnam Ranjith Kumar

Designation: Media worker

Assasinated on: 03 May 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Worked as the Circulation Superviser at Jaffna daily "Uthayan". Five armed men, suspected of belonging to the paramilitary EPDP, stormed the newspaper office on the world Press Freedom Day and fired at random, killing him along with another employee.


5. Name: Sampath Lakmal de Silva

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 02 July 2006 in Colombo

Additional remarks: Worked as a freelance defence correspondent for several Sinhala language newspapers including 'Irudina' - 'Lakbima' and 'Sathdina'. He was called out of his home and shot at point-blank range by a gunman suspected to be a member of Sri Lanka's Military Intelligence.


6. Name: Mariadasan Manojanraj

Designation: Media Worker

Assassinated on: 27 July 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: A distributor of Tamil newspapers 'Yarl Thinakural' and 'Veerakesari' in Jaffna. Killed in a a claymore explosion while he was on his way to collect the newspapers.


7. Name: Sathasivam Baskaran

Designation: Media Worker

Assassinated on: 15 August 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Newspaper agent and a delivery driver attached to 'Uthayan' newspaper. Sri Lankan Army soldiers fired at the van and killed him at Puthur junction near Atchchuveli , Jaffna.


8. Name: Sinnathamby Sivamaharajah

Designation: Media owner

Assassinated on: 20 August 2006 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Managing Director of Jaffna Tamil daily 'Namathu Eelanadu'. Shot dead inside his residence located in the Sri Lanka Army designated High Security Zone in Tellippalai, Jaffna.

Media workers killed in 2005

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Dharmaratnam Sivaram (Taraki)

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 28 April 2005 in Colombo.

Additional remarks: The Senior Editor of the "Tamil Net" website and  wrote weekly columns to "Daily Mirror" and "Veerakesari" newspapers. Abducted by armed men in Colombo and his body was found next day near the Sri Lankan parliament. Killed purportedly by para-military operatives working with the Sri Lankan Military Intelligence .


2. Name: Kannamuttu Arsakumar

Designation: Media Worker

Assassinated on: 29 June 2005 in Matupola (Kalmunai- Akkaraipattu road)

Additional remarks: Worked as a newspaper delivery agent in the eastern province. Prior to his murder, had been warned by the state backed paramilitary operatives not to distribute the Batticaloa Edition of  "Eelanatham" newspaper.


3. Name: Relangi Selvarajah

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 12 August 2005 in Colombo.

Additional remarks: A Radio and Television presenter worked for the state run media institutions and was killed along with her husband. She produced a radio program for the state owned SLBC called "Ithaya Veenai," allegedly funded by the para military group EPDP. The program is known for being highly critical of the Tamil rebels. The Police blamed the LTTE for the attack.


4. Name: David Selvaratnam

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 29 August 2005 in Colombo

Additional remarks: A security officer attached to the Tamil daily "Sudar Oli", a pro-Tamil nationalist newspaper. He was killed when two grenades were thrown into the newspaper office by unknown attackers.


5. Name: Yogakumar Krishnapillai

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 30 September 2005 in Batticaloa

Additional remarks: Worked as a distributor of the Batticaloa edition of "Eelanatham" newspaper, despite repeated threats. Two weeks prior to his murder, the police Special Task Force blocked the sales of the Eelanatham paper in government controlled areas in the East.


 

6. Name: L. M. Faleel (Netpittimunai Faleel)

Designation: Writer

Assassinated on: 02 December 2005 in Batticaloa

Additional remarks: Worked as the Divisional Secretary in Kattankudy, Batticaloa. Shot by unknown assailants inside his office.


7. Name: K. Navaratnam

Designation: Media Worker

Assassinated on: 22 December 2005 in Jaffna.

Additional remarks: Worked part time as a newspaper distributor in Jaffna. He was shot by an unknown gunmen while on his way to collect Tamil newspaper "Thinakural - Jaffna edition" for delivery.

Media workers killed in 2009

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Lasantha Wickramatunge

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 09 January 2009 in Colombo

Additional remarks: Founding Chief Editor of the English weekly 'The Sunday Leader'. He was repeatedly shot in broad daylight by eight assailants arrived on four motorcycles who blocked his path in a busy Colombo street. The assassination occurred in a  high security zone in the capital, in close proximity to a military Airport and an Air force Base,


2. Name: Punniyamurthy Sathyamurthy

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 12 February 2009 in Thevipuram, Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Regularly contributed to various Tamil publications including Eelanatham, Vellynatham, Eelamurasu, Velichcham and several radio stations. Sustained fatal injuries as a result of Sri Lankan military bombardment while living inside the government designated safe zone and later succumbed to his injuries.


3. Name: Sasi Mathan

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 05 March 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Worked as a distributor for Tamil daily 'Eelanatham' in Mulaithivu area. Killed  in a mortar shell attack by Sri Lankan military, while distributing the newspaper in Iranaipalai.


4. Name: Mahalingam Maheswaran

Designation: Media worker/Journalist

Assassinated on: 13 March 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Coordinated the distribution of 'Eelanatham' in Mullaithivu District, while working as a reporter to the same paper. Killed  in a mortar shell attack by Sri Lankan military in Pokkanai.


5. Name: Anton

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: March 2009 in Mullaithivu  (date unverifiable).

Additional remarks: A distributor attached to 'Eelanatham' newspaper. A mortar shell fired by the advancing Sri Lankan troops killed him while distributing the newspaper in Iranaipalai. Reportedly his entire family has been killed during the final days of the war.


6. Name: Rajkumar Densey

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 09 April 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: A computer graphic designer attached to the Tamil daily 'Eelanatham'. Killed along with her husband in Pokkanai area, by Sri Lankan military shellfire.


7. Name: Jeyaraja Susithara (Suganthan)

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 25 April 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Worked as a printing machine operator at 'Eelanatham' newspaper. Killed by a Sri Lankan Army sharp shooter (Sniper) in Valaignarmadam.


8. Name: Mariyappu Anthoneykumar

Designation: Media worker / Journalist

Assassinated on:  14 May 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Apart from working as a newspaper distributor and a store keeper, he served as a news reporter for Tamil daily 'Eelanatham'. After surviving until the final days of the war, killed by Army RPG fire while trying to come out of a “bunker” shelter in Mullivaikkal.


9. Name: Thuraisingham Tharshan

Designation: Media worker

Assassinated on: 14th May 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: Worked as a computer graphic designer attached to 'Eelanatham' newspaper. After surviving until the final days of the war, killed along with another media worker by Army RPG fire while trying to come out of a “bunker” shelter in Mullivaikkal.


10. Name: Isai Priya (Shoba)

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 18 May 2009 in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: A TV presenter worked for the Tamil rebel television station. Reportedly surrendered to the Sri Lankan military during the final days of the war. Photographic evidence surfaced later, leading many to believe that she was sexually assaulted before being killed.


11. Name: Thirukulasingham Thavabalan

Designation: Journalist/Political activist

Assassinated on: May 2009 (date unverifiable) in Mullaithivu

Additional remarks: He served as the head of Tamil rebel radio station and is best known for his outstanding skill as a photographer. Believed to have been summarily executed after surrendering to the Sri Lankan troops at the end of war. Final moments of his life remain unknown and unverified.

Media workers killed in 2008

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Paranirupesingham Devakumar

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 28 May 2008 in Jaffna

Additional remarks: Jaffna correspondent of Sakthi TV and the head of its’ provincial station. Hacked to death after being abducted by an armed group, while on his way home from work.


2. Name: Mohamad Rasmi Maharoof

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 06 October 2008 in Anuradhapura

Additional remarks: A provincial correspondent for Sirasa TV. He was killed while covering an opposition party gathering when a suicide bomber, believed to be a member of the LTTE, detonated an explosive device.

3. Name: Rasiya Jeynthiran

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: October 2008 (date unverifiable).

Additional remarks: Formerly worked as a sub editor at Tamil daily 'Eelanatham'. Waylaid and killed by the Sri Lankan troops in Mannar. Further details remain unknown.

Media workers killed in 2004

Intro | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010


1. Name: Aiyathurai Nadesan

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 31 May 2004 in Batticaloa.

Additional remarks: He was the Vice-President of the Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance and worked as a columnist for "Veerakesari" Newspaper. The Human Rights Watch blamed the Karuna group - a state backed para-military  - for the assassination, in their 2005 World Report.


2. Name: Kandasamy Aiyer Balanadarajah

Designation: Journalist/Political activist

Assassinated on: 16 August 2004 in Colombo.

Additional remarks: Worked as the Media Secretary of the paramilitary group Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP), apart from working for the group's official newspaper "Thinamurasu". Gunned down by men believed to be members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. (LTTE)


3. Name: Lanka Jayasundera

Designation: Journalist

Assassinated on: 11 December 2004 in Colombo.

Additional remarks: Worked as a photo journalist attached to Vijaya Newspapers. He was killed when a hand-held bomb detonated at a musical concert in Colombo's former Race Course open air stadium. The attack was widely suspected to be the handiwork of the Sinhala extremist elements close to rightwing political outfit Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU).


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Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka

  • JDS is the Sri Lankan partner organization of international media rights group, Reporters Without Borders (RSF). The launching of this website was made possible by the EU’s European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR), of which Reporters Without Borders is a beneficiary.