Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo called for a thorough investigation into the discovery of a grenade inside a Catholic church in the district of Borella in the Sri Lankan capital last week.
“The police, instead of finding out the truth, tried to fabricate a story. We reject this act of the police,” said the prelate in a media briefing last week.
The cardinal said the priests in the church told the officers to view the full CCTV footage, but the latter reportedly refused, saying it was enough to watch the videos from the previous evening.
The police later arrested four people who have been working in the church for years and declared that the sacristan placed the grenade in the church.
“I asked the parish priest to see the recorded videos of the whole day,” said the cardinal, adding that the footage showed a “suspicious man” entering the church with a shopping bag.
“At first you see him limp, but then when he meets other people and leaves the building he walks normally,” the cardinal was quoted by online news site AsiaNews.
The sacristan later found the grenade while he was cleaning the church and immediately notified the assistant and later the parish priest.
“We believe the police are trying to cover up the conspiracy behind it,” said the cardinal. “If you don’t tell the truth, the police uniform makes no sense,” he added.
The Catholic Church in Sri Lanka marked the 1,000th since the 2019 Easter attacks last week with the theme “Let my cry come before you, Lord.”