The prison authorities have decided yesterday (31) to close down the Vavuniya Prison until August 15 with immediate effect.
The prison has been closed on the advice of the health authorities after six inmates of the prison contracted a disease similar to smallpox and several other suspected patients were found.
All the inmates in the prison have been given necessary treatment and medicines for smallpox and all the inmates have also been vaccinated.
Health authorities said if it’s smallpox, it can be contracted from a foreigner even though it has been eradicated from the country.
The authorities said that they will conduct extensive investigations to identify the disease.
The health authorities of Vavuniya have visited the prison and observed the situation. They have given instructions to the prison officials who said that the situation could aggravate due to the presence of a large number of inmates.
A prison official said that several requests were made to reduce the number of inmates or to improve the facilities of the prison due to insufficient space, but there was no positive response from the authorities.
Source – lankasara