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Prez issues order on Archeology Director about lands in North & East!

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has ordered the Director of Archeology to immediately stop the acquisition of land in the Northern and Eastern Provinces until further notice.

This order was made following a discussion held between the President and Tamil MPs of the Northern and Eastern Provinces at the Presidential Secretariat.

Lands related issues of the people of the Northern and Eastern Provinces, bringing a political solution and the development of the provinces were to be discussed at the Presidential Secretariat on May 11, 12 and 13.

However, it was decided to hold the discussions only on the 11th and 12th after it was agreed to discuss the development of the province on a separate day.

During the discussion, the representatives of Tamil political parties pointed out to the President that the Wildlife Department, Mahaweli Development Authority and the Department of Archeology are jointly occupying the lands belonging to the Tamil people in an unfair manner.

They pointed out that the Department of Archeology is carrying out this process by naming various lands as archaeological sites in a haphazard manner.

The representatives requested the President to order the heads of the relevant government agencies to prevent the forcible land acquisitions until the matter is investigated.

Furthermore, they have also requested the President to release the LTTE suspects who have been arrested under that Prevention of Terrorism Act by abolishing it.  

The President has questioned the Attorney General about the issue and the Attorney General has said that an immediate decision will be taken in this regard.

The People’s Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam and Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization representatives said that they have already had discussions with the President about the same issues, but the decisions taken were not implemented. Therefore, they requested that action be taken following the recent meeting.

Source – Aruna

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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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