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FR against Mannar wind power project

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Three eminent environmentalists Rohan Pethiyagoda, Prof. Nimal Gunatilleke, and Prof. Sarath Kotagama together with the Bishop of Mannar Rev. Fr. Bastian filed a fundamental rights petition (SCFR/167/2024) in the Supreme Court.

The case has been filed in the public interest, against the procurement and construction of the proposed 250 MW Mannar Wind Power Project in Mannar that is reported to have been awarded to Adani Green Energy PTE Ltd and/or Adani Green Energy S L Limited.

The case names 67 Respondents including the Cabinet of Ministers, the Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA), the Central Environmental Authority, the Board of Investments, the Ceylon Electricity Board, the Public Utilities Commission Sri Lanka and the Hon. Attorney General among others.

The petition raises concerns regarding the credibility of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) carried out in respect of the project, the role played by the SLSEA, raises certain procedural issues in the awarding of the purported contract, and questions the characterisation of the project as a Government-to-Government deal.

It also calls into question the basis for the negotiated tariff to be fixed at USD 8.26 cents per kilowatt-hour for a period of 20 years when the EIA conducts its assessment based on a cost of USD 4.6 cents, potentially causing considerable financial loss to the country and a burden on consumers.

In seeking their relief, the petitioners pray that the Supreme Court declare that there is a violation of the fundamental rights of the petitioners and citizenry at large, declare that the decisions made to award the project to Adani as wrongful, and calls for any consequential actions undertaken, to be declared illegal.

The petition states that the case has been filed to further the national interest, to preserve and protect public property, including the environment, flora and fauna, public finances and to safeguard the rights and freedoms of the general public of Sri Lanka and its future generations.

(newsfirst.lk)

(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by newsfirst.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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President meets TMVP Leader Pillaiyan

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has symbolically distributed freehold deeds to 192 individuals from 13 divisional secretariat divisions in the Batticaloa District. 

This distribution is part of the ‘Urumaya’ freehold deeds program, which aims to provide freehold deeds to 27,595 qualified families in the district, according to the President’s Media Division (PMD).

The ‘Urumaya’ national program is set to grant 2 million freehold land deeds to people across the island, enhancing property rights and security for numerous families.

Following the distribution ceremony, President Wickremesinghe met with TMVP Leader Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, also known as Pillaiyan, and party members at their headquarters. 

During this meeting, the TMVP leader expressed his support for the President and confirmed his party’s backing in the upcoming presidential election.

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Deadline for NIC applications extended to June 30

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The Department for Registration of Persons (DRP) has extended the deadline for individuals over 40 years old to apply for National Identity Cards (NICs) to June 30, 2024. 

Commissioner General of the department Pradeep Saputhanthri stated that the deadline for these applications has been extended to June 30. Originally, the deadline was set for March 31.

This extension was granted in response to requests from Divisional Secretaries, according to the department.

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Highlights from the 16th Nationalised Services Cricket Awards

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The 16th Nationalised Services Award, organized by the Nationalised Services Cricket Association (NSCA), took place in Colombo. 

State Minister for Sports Rohana Dissanayake and Sri Lanka Cricket President Shammi Silva chaired the event. 

NSCA Chairman Nalin Aponsu and members of semi-state and bank cricket teams attended. 

Awards were presented to teams that participated and won national service cricket tournaments from 2018 to 2024. 

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