What dark secrets did this young lass carry?
The photo of the suicide bomber released to media.
The Defence Ministry released yesterday (12/1) the CCTV coverage on the attempted killing of the Sri Lankan Minister Douglas Devananda in Colombo. Today’s Sunday papers gave wide coverage to this chilling video of the last moments of this suicide bomber.
Dressed in a yellow sari, hair in a neat traditional knot she looked demure and cool and looked every inch a teacher she was claiming to be. No one in a month of Sundays would have even suspected her slightly of being anything other than what she claimed to be.
Today’s Sunday Times account says “She got off the three-wheeler, apparently making no payment to the driver and the three-wheeler drove away.” She shows no sign of any polio related impediment as mentioned in earlier reports but walks up to the counter to produce her national identity card and register herself. It was 7.56 a.m. She is the third in line to register and shows no signs of nervousness of the impending self immolation.
The video shows her coming into the office, meeting the minister’s Co-ordinating Secretary Steven Peiris (who later died in the blast) and the Secretary in conversation with her seated in front of him. The woman was there to ask the Minister to obtain a letter for a transfer from Puliyankulam, an uncleared area to Vavuniya where she claimed her family was. Mr. Peiris had asked the woman whether she had brought a letter making her request, and other necessary documents. Apparently, she had none. According to the ST report Mr. Peiris told the woman to take a seat in the public area, while he spoke to the Minister.
The next few screens shows the woman with her handbag making a first attempt to get up and then another. On the third occasion she stands up and casually tries to adjust her sari pleats in front (as many of us do!) and bang sets off the explosion.
Click on on this link to watch the video
I’ll never feel the same about adjusting my sari after seeing this.