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Harak Kata & Kudu Salindu’s return: Suspicious van near BIA?

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A tense situation was reported among the security forces personnel yesterday (15) due to a suspicious van parked near the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), Katunayake at the time when the two criminals Nandun Chintaka alias Harak Kata and Salindu Malshika alias Kudu Salindu were brought back.

However, after a special investigation, it has been revealed that the van was carrying a group of intelligence agencies that had arrived to join in the same operation.

It was reported that special security measures were implemented until the two suspects were brought to Colombo from BIA.

More flight delays…

Two ASPs and two CIs of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and the Police Special Task Force (STF) were responsible for bringing these underworld leaders to Sri Lanka.

Flight UL 142, which was scheduled to depart for Sri Lanka from Mumbai Airport at 3.30 am yesterday, was delayed for almost two hours due to the sudden death of a passenger on board.

It is said that these two criminals were already detained in the aircraft under the protection of the four officers.

To assist these officers, two Madagascar police officers were also present during the entire flight.

After the delay, the flight left at 5.30 in the morning.

The officers who were in charge of bringing the two underworld leaders to Sri Lanka had started the first flight from Madagascar to Sri Lanka on March 11 at around 8.00 pm local time.

The destination of the first flight was Nairobi, Kenya.

Meanwhile, the Pakistani drug traffickers had launched an operation to rescue Harak Kata and others by spending millions of dollars on the local authorities in Madagascar.

After arriving at Nairobi Airport, they had to stay at the airport for 10 hours to board the next flight to Mumbai, India.

However, at the last moment, the officials were forced to wait for another eight hours for the next flight as the two suspects were refused entry to the flight.

During that time, the provision of food and drinks to the suspects and all other needs were performed under the supervision of the security personnel.

Although the plane tickets were booked to leave Mumbai in the morning of March 14, the officials accompanying the suspects had missed the flight due to the delay experienced at the Nairobi airport.

India deploys Special Intelligence Unit…

Accordingly, the Indian Government has provided assistance at diplomatic level to detain the two underworld leaders at the Mumbai Airport for more than 24 hours.

The officials of the Sri Lanka High Commission in India also provided assistance while a Special intelligence Unit was deployed for the security of the airport.

After being taken from the Airport to the Colombo Judicial Medical Officer for examination, Harak Kata and Kudu Salindu were brought to the CID Headquarters for further investigations.

President signs detention orders

President Ranil Wickremesinghe has signed the recommendation given by the Defence Ministry at 4.00 pm yesterday (15) to detain and interrogate the two suspects under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) for 90 days.

Meanwhile, it was reported that a team of eight lawyers, including four president’s counsels, would represent Harak Kata and Kudu Salindu.

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Harak Kata & Kudu Salindu brought back to Sri Lanka

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IMF approves Sri Lanka program review

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The International Monetary Fund has approved a review of Sri Lanka’s program, Foreign Minister Ali Sabry has said.

On a X post, he has said, “This achievement is a testament to our dedication to driving forward economic reforms and securing a prosperous future for all Sri Lankans.”

According to the State Minister of Finance – Shehan Semasinghe, “a favorable outcome from the review is expected to unlock the 3rd tranche of approximately USD 330 million”.

The IMF had earlier said Sri Lanka had made “sufficient progress” on debt restructuring for a review on June 12, despite final deals pending with bilateral creditors and private creditors.

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Another probe related to Easter Sunday attacks

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has appointed a Committee of Inquiry to investigate the actions taken by the State Intelligence Service (SIS), Chief of National Intelligence (CNI), and other relevant authorities concerning prior intelligence received about the bomb attacks on April 21, 2019. This decision follows the findings of the Final Report of the Commission of Inquiry, dated January 31, 2021, which highlighted that Indian Intelligence agencies and other sources had provided advance warnings about the impending attacks.

The Committee of Inquiry will be chaired by Ms. A.N.J. De Alwis, Retired Judge of the High Court. Other esteemed members of the committee include SLAS special grade Officer Ms. K.N.K. Somaratne and Senior Lawyer Mr. W.M.A.N. Nishane, AAL. 

The committee’s mandate includes examining whether actions or measures were taken by the SIS, CNI, and other relevant authorities based on the prior information or intelligence on an impending attack on April 21, 2019 by Indian intelligence agencies and any other sources and if so, adequacy of the actions and measure taken by the SIS, CNI and other relevant authorities. 

Additionally, the committee will investigate the circumstances surrounding the Directorate of Military Intelligence’s (DMI) and Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) initial belief that the Vavunathivu killing of two police officers on November 30, 2018, was connected to the LTTE. This belief was held for four months before suspects with alleged links to the National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ) were identified.

A compact disk containing the Final Report of the Commission of Inquiry on the Bomb Attacks of April 21, 2019, has been provided to the committee. The President has authorized the committee to inquire relevant officials and examine pertinent documents to thoroughly investigate these matters.

Ms. Sarathanjali Manoharan, Senior Assistant Secretary to the President, will serve as the Secretary to the Committee of Inquiry. The committee is expected to submit its report, including findings and recommendations, to the President by September 15, 2024.

(President’s Media Division)

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New, free train ride for pilgrims visiting Mihintale (Video)

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Cabinet Spokesman Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena has said that a new short train ride between Anuradhapura and Mihintale will be arranged for pilgrims during the Poson season.

He said this at the Cabinet briefing held today (June 12) at the Government Information Department.

Since work on the Northern railway line have been delayed, 400 special buses will be deployed to Anuradhapura instead during the Poson season, he added.

Noting that a special railway line from Anuradhapura to Mihintale has been reconstructed,  the minister said that Sri Lanka Railways has been directed to arrange special, free train rides on this line for pilgrims.

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