Mystery deepens in killing mother and maiming son
Katuwawala Ehellape in Boralesgamuwa is a densely populated busy
suburb of Colombo. However, at night it resembled a ghost town as
residents retired early to bed. The dawn of March 22 was quiet as usual.
However, pre-monsoon clouds had made the area pitch dark. Dogs howled
incessantly, breaking the silence and creating an eerie atmosphere.
Fifty-two-year-old Tilaka Nandani Jayasinghe lived in her partially
built upstair house at Katuwawala Ehellape in Boralesgamuwa with her
younger son. She was an ambitious woman who never took setbacks for
granted. She endured many hardships to climb the career ladder and made
a success of her life. Her struggle bore fruit when she qualified as a
technical officer and obtained employment at the Maharagama Cancer
Hospital Laboratory. Tilaka lived with her younger son, a bright student
at Isipathana College. He was recognised for his exceptional skills in
Mathematics. He passed the GCE Advanced Level examination with flying
colours recently securing three As in the Mathematics stream.
Tilaka with all her career success faced certain drawbacks in life.
Her husband, a retired Air Force officer had left her and was living
separately with his older son at Diyagama, Homagama, police said.
Tilaka, however, lived on her own with the income she earned at the
Cancer Hospital. However, she had one last ambition in life. That was to
complete the two-storeyed house and hand it over to her younger son. She
had promised him that if he did well in the examination and was selected
to the university, she would expedite the construction work on the house
so that they could live a comfortable life.
It was wish her son endorsed. He studied very well and was an
obedient child. His ambition was to make his mother happy and he did
everything within his capacity to achieve his target. His dream came
true when he obtained four A's in the AL examination. Police suspect
that the promise of wanting to complete the building of the house when
her son brought home the news that he had passed the AL examination with
flying colours might have led Tilaka to an early grave. “I want to
complete the construction work of this house so that my son and I can
live peacefully. "This is a promise I made to my son.
Now the time has come to fulfil this promise. Can you give me an
estimate for the construction work so that I can budget my finances and
decide when we could begin building”. This was the conversation that
Tilaka had had with a Bassunnehe. It is rumoured that from then onwards
Tilaka had begun a clandestine relationship with the Bassunnehe - who is
one of the suspects in the crime.
Tilaka as usual had arrived after work on March 21 and indulged in
her normal household chores. After preparing dinner she had dined with
her favourite son who loved his mother very much. Tilaka had made many
sacrifices for her children especially for her younger son who she loved
very much. Tilaka had many dreams and plans for him.
She wanted him to enter the university and pass out as an engineer.
She had plans to give him in marriage and take care of his children. But
destiny had other plans for him.
It was between 12 midnight and 12.15 a.m. when W. A. Nissanthi, a
neighbour heard blood curdling screams of someone calling for help. "It
was an eerie night when Katuwawala residents heard the screams of
someone in the neighbourhood but they could not identify who he was. “It
was difficult to figure out what was happening but I managed to identify
the voice as that of Tilaka’s son. We ran towards Tilaka's house and
found her son at the entrance soaked in blood. It was an awful sight,”
Tilaka’s son was lying with severe stab injuries and he had crawled
out screaming for help saying that an intruder had crept into the house
and had stabbed his mother and tried to kill him too. Nissanthi said
that another neighbour Mallika after hearing the cry had called 119
police emergency and alerted them about the situation. The Police rushed
to the scene and took Tilaka and her son to the Kalubowila Hospital.
The police party had seen several blood stains scattered around the
area. Jayantha Pushpakumara, Tilaka's husband, said he received a call
around 12.30 am from the Kalubowila Hospital Police Post that his wife
was in a critical condition.
He later on came to know that his younger son too was in a critical
condition in the hospital.
It was later found that the suspect had entered the balcony from the
partially built staircase of Tilaka's house. He had then used a rope and
got down into the ground floor and then entered Tilaka’s room.
What took place after that is unclear. However, police said that the
trail made by the blood stains, Tilaka appeared to have crawled towards
her son's room. Subsequently the son realising what had happened might
have confronted the intruder which resulted in the son too being stabbed
with the same knife.
Police said the motive was unclear. It could have been a robbery.
However, it is rumoured that a mason bass who had a close friendship
with Tilaka might have stabbed her.
Speculation is rife that a sex maniac may have carried out the
assault when she refused his advances. A personal dispute has also not
been ruled out. The police said the suspect had jumped off the parapet
wall and entered a neighbour’s house.
He had washed the blood stains and changed. A spokesman for the
Police Media Unit said that several suspects have been questioned in