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Govt. MPs seek probe against Shavendra Silva, IGP & others

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Filing a writ petition in Court of Appeal, 22 government Parliamentarians representing SLPP and several others have sought an order directing the authorities to conduct a comprehensive investigation in order to ascertain as to whether former Army Commander General Shavendra Silva, IGP Chandana Wickremaratne or any other respondents have willfully disobeyed the orders given by former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to take action to prevent the damages to property and people following the attack on Galle Face protesters on May 9.

Ministers Bandula Gunawardena, Prasanna Ranatunga and 37 SLPP activists including 20 parliamentarians whose properties were damaged or destroyed following the mob attacks filed this petition naming former Army Commander General Shavendra Silva, Defence Secretary Kamal Gunarathne, Senior DIG Deshabandu Thennakoon, Army Commander Lieutenant General H.L.V.M. Liyanage and several others as respondents. The Court of Appeal yesterday fixed the petition for support on January 16. This petition is to be supported by President’s Counsel Sanjeeva Jayawardena.  

The petitioners reiterated the importance of conducting a comprehensive investigation in order to ascertain whether there was a politically motivated plan or other agenda to undermine the state.The petitioners stated that former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the capacity of Minister of  Defence had appointed a ‘Board of Inquiry’ consisting of three highly decorated former commanders of tri forces, under the Chairmanship of the Admiral of Fleet Wasantha Karannagoda, to ascertain lapses, if any, by the armed forces and State Intelligence Service, during the recent incidents of violence.

The petitioners said the conduct of former Army Commander General Shavendra Silva during the time period material to the instant application is highly questionable and that he has on several occasions disregarded direct and repeated instructions given to him by the former President, and the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence to protect the private property of the petitioners as well as other Citizen and also the public property of the State.The petitioners stated that the Board of Inquiry has found that the conduct of General Shavendra Silva on 31-03-2022 and 09-05-2022 are highly suspicious and questionable.

They further alleged that General Shavendra Silva had disregarded repeated instructions from then President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and the Secretary of Defence to take action to prevent the damages to property and people being harmed near Beira Lake at Navam Mawatha in the afternoon and to clear the mob along the Galle road in front of the Temple Trees in spite of having over 4,500 including five Battalions from the elite Air Mobile Brigade, Special Forces and Commandos stationed in different locations within Colombo city limits.

They alleged Sri Lanka Police, and the armed forces, turned a blind eye, and did not take any action to prevent the ongoing violence and protect life and property of the citizens of Sri Lanka, despite the fact that the President had even declared a state of emergency and had issued Emergency Regulations.

(dailymirror.lk)

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Indian-owned ship held in Colombo after oil spill; travel ban imposed on captain

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The Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) has taken custody of a ship which had caused an oil spill while anchored at the Colombo Port.

A spokesperson of the MEPA stated that legal action has been initiated against the company that owns the ship and the relevant insurance company regarding the oil spill. Under the Marine Environment Protection Authority Act, the MEPA is seeking compensation for the incident, the authority revealed.

The ship, owned by an Indian company, had recently arrived at the Port of Colombo for maintenance activities. A special investigation conducted by MEPA had revealed a leak of hydraulic oil from the ship. The company’s owner has admitted to the incident and agreed to provide compensation, according to the MEPA.

Furthermore, the Colombo Magistrate Court has imposed a travel ban on the captain of the ship preventing him from leaving the country, as per a request made by the Colombo Port Police.

(This story, originally published by adaderana.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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5 companies fined Rs. 1,243 Mn. for illegal gold imports

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State Finance Minister Dr. Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said that five companies have been identified for illegally importing gold into Sri Lanka during the past few years, and fines of Rs.1,243 million have been imposed on those companies.

The Minister said that one of the related companies was ordered to pay Rs.179 million as fines.

Emphasising that from now on, all licensed institutions carrying out import of gold goods should avoid these illegal acts, the Minister said that the relevant institutions will also be charged fines for the gold purchased by even third parties considering the production reports.

He said the efforts to stabilise the state revenue of the country are currently being carried out by closing all the loopholes related to the loss of state revenue gradually.

Certain parties who import gold goods have turned this into a big racket and therefore there is a mafia around it.There were various challenges and threats when the government tried to curb this mafia initially.

The Minister further said that there were various levels of threats, pressure and intimidation, and the government did not waver in the face of all these challenges and moved to the second step.

(dailynews.lk)

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

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Teachers & Principals launch TU action

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Teachers and principals in schools across the island will engage in trade union action today.

Convenor of the National Collective Against Teachers’ and Principals’ Salary Disparities Venerable Ulapane Sumangala Thero, says teachers and principals will report sick today.

The decision has been made due to the lack of solutions provided to issues related to salary anomalies.

In a statement yesterday, the Ministry of Education confirmed that schools will operate as usual today and tomorrow.

Meanwhile, The strike initiated by non-academic employees of state universities continues for the 29th consecutive day.

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