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Ven Ulapane Sumangala Thero Files Petition in Supreme Court Against Proposed State Lands (Special Provisions) Bill; Accuses Govt of Having Intention to Allow Transfer of State Land to Foreigners

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A fresh petition has been filed before the Supreme Court against the proposed State Lands (Special Provisions) Bill that was moved in Parliament by the Government recently.

The petition said the proposed bill is against Sri Lanka’s Constitution and seeks a court order calling for a two-thirds majority in Parliament as well as a referendum to pass the bill.

The Petitioner was Ven. Ulapane Sumangala Thero, citing the Attorney General as its respondent.

The Petitioner states that the Government had tabled this Bill with the intention of allowing the transfer of State land to foreigners. He further points out that the proposed Bill allows people to freely trade any plot of land in the country.

Sumangala Thero further argues that the Government has not obtained the views of the Provincial Councils across the country before tabling the State Lands (Special Provisions) Bill before the Parliament although it is mandatory to do so.

Claiming that the State Lands (Special Provisions) Bill violates most of the fundamental rights in the Constitution, the petitioner seeks the Supreme Court to deliver an order calling two-third majority consent of the members of the Parliament as well as a referendum to pass the bill.

Meanwhile, Joint Opposition Parliamentarians Udaya Gammanpila, Sisira Jayakody as well as Attorney-at-Law Premnath Dolawatte had lodged three petitions against the State Lands (Special Provisions) on Thursday.

President Maithripala Sirisena recently also spoke out against the bill saying it opens the doors for large State plantations to be broken up and given to the public, which would harm the economy.

Courtesy:Daily FT

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