Connect with us

news

Chamal says no need to deploy more cops to guard MPs

Published

on

‘Police short of manpower’

By Saman Indrajith

Irrigation Minister and Internal security, Home Affairs and Disaster Management State Minister Chamal Rajapaksa told parliament yesterday that policemen were there for the protection of the people and not to carry the files and bags of MPs.

Minister Rajapaksa said: Policemen are there to carry out police duties. There are about 85,000 policemen. Of them, 38,000 have been assigned for close protection duties of MPs and others. But if the MPs have no confidence to go among people without the police protection that is something the MPs should be ashamed of. We are not increasing the number of policemen assigned to MPs so that the MPs could make use of them for other purposes such as carrying their bags and files. Do not worry about security. We give security not only to the MPs but also to the people. Providing policemen to MPs started in 1989. The MPs were allowed to recruit five persons of their choice to the Reserve Police Service of the police so that they would be detailed for the security of those MPs after training. After that owing to LTTE threats two or three more policemen from the regular force were assigned to each MP. As per the most recent arrangement, each MP has been given four policemen for their protection by the Ministerial Security Division. But now there is a shortage of policemen in other divisions so a decision has been taken to decrease the number of policemen assigned to an MP to two. “What does an MP want – more policemen around them or police having enough policemen to attend to the problems of the people in their electorates?”

The Minister said so when Matara District SJB MP Buddhika Pathirana asked for increasing the number of policemen assigned to the MPs. MP Pathirana said that some MPs had raised their voice against drug kingpins and other criminals who could target those MPs. “It was recently reported that a drug baron in prison issued death threats to the Defence Secretary and the President. Such is the power of the drug lords. So the policemen assigned to the MPs should be increased, MP Pathirana said.

SJB MPs S. M. Marikkar and Thushara Indunil endorsed MP Pathirana’s request.

 Minister Rajapaksa said that the MPs did not have to worry about their security because the government was strong enough to ensure that all people including the MPs would be safe. “If we accede to the demand to increase the numbers of policemen given to the MPs, then we have to increase the recruitment.”

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

news

Majority of 300 luxury vehicles to be released

Published

on

… some shipped in without opening LCs, EU wants restrictions abolished

By Shamindra Ferdinando

The majority of the luxury vehicles imported by special permit holders in contravention of the import ban imposed by the government in view of precarious economic situation caused by corona first wave are likely to be released subject to penalties.

Well informed sources said that those vehicles shipped in without even opening LCs would be released. Among the violators were many government servants.

Sources said that vehicles brought in without opening LCs were likely to be confiscated.

“We have categorised over 300 vehicles, including BMWs, Mercedes-Benz and Audis into two groups. Customs are now in the process of evaluating individual cases,” a high ranking state official said.

The government announced a ban on vehicle imports to arrest the depletion of foreign reserves. Sources acknowledged that at the time the vehicles

arrived in Sri Lanka the second corona wave hadn’t erupted. The situation was far worse now and further deteriorating, they said, adding that the Customs were being inundated with requests for releasing vehicles on sympathetic grounds.

Controversy surrounds the failure on the part of the government to strictly implement the import ban in view of the sharp drop in state revenue due to the pandemic.

Recently, the EU demanded that Sri Lanka immediately lift import ban or face the consequences. The EU issued the warning in talks with government representatives. Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena explained the circumstances that compelled the government to impose import restrictions. The EU sought an explanation as to when the ban would be lifted. The Foreign Ministry quoted Foreign Minister Gunawardena as having explained to the EU the challenges Sri Lanka economy was facing amidst the dwindling foreign currency reserve situation due to the significant reduction in remittances and tourism revenue induced by the COVID-19 global pandemic. The minister said that the import restrictions were being reviewed.

Continue Reading

news

Nearly 74,000 persons under home quarantine

Published

on

Close to 74,000 people belonging to 27,974 families had been placed under home quarantine, Police Spokesman DIG Ajith Rohana said on Wednesday (25).

He said that the number of cases from the Minuwangoda and Peliyagoda clusters had increased to 17,436 with 458 persons had tested positive for the virus on Tuesday.

Two wards of the Kethumathi Maternity Hospital, Panadura were temporarily closed on Wednesday after two pregnant women admitted there tested COVID-19 positive.

The two women are from Atalugama, which has been declared an isolated area. During the last few days close to half of the COVID-19 patients detected in Colombo District are from Atalugama.

The two women have been sent to Neville Fernando Hospital, Malabe. The patients and staff in Wards 3 and 4 at the Kethumathi Maternity Hospital are now under quarantine. Their family members too have been asked to undergone self-quarantine.

The Police had arrested 61 persons who had violated quarantine laws within the 24 hours that ended at 8 am yesterday, Police spokesman, DIG Ajith Rohana said, adding that they had been arrested for not wearing masks or for not maintaining physical distancing. With those altogether 688 persons had been arrested for violating quarantine laws from October 30, he said.

Commissioner General of Prisons Thushara Upuldeniya said that apart from Welikada, the spread of COVID-19 had been controlled at other prisons. COVID-19 cases had been reported from six prisons, he added.

“We are conducting PCR tests and hope that the situation in Welikada too would be brought under control. Twenty four new cases were detected from prisons on November 24 and from October 04, we have identified 708 cases within the prison system.”

Continue Reading

news

Severity of impact of second wave on economy could be far worse than anticipated – CBSL

Published

on

By Shyam Nuwan Ganewatte

The impact of the second wave of COVID-19 could be severer on the economic growth than previously anticipated, Director of Economic Research at the Central Bank Dr. Chandranath Amarasekara said yesterday (26).

Dr. Amarasekera said so responding to a query by The Island at a CBSL media briefing. The top official said that an assessment couldn’t be made yet as the second wave was continuing.

Continue Reading

Trending