Comments /784 Views / Monday, 19 June 2017 01:44
By S.S. Selvanayagam
A Fundamental Rights petition against the steps to dump garbage in the Muthurajawela sanctuary was fixed for support on 20 July, for granting leave to proceed by the Supreme Court.
Thirty-five Petitioners who reside in close proximity to the Muthurajawela sanctuary filed the case citing the Colombo Municipal Council, its Commissioner, Urban Development Authority, Central Environment Authority, Wattala Pradeshiya Sabha, Commissioner General of Department of Agrarian Development, Director General of Department of Wildlife Conservation, Irrigation Department Director General, Assistant Divisional Secretary, Geological Survey and Mines Bureau and the Attorney General as Respondents. The Petitioners highlighted that Muthurajawela is a declared sanctuary with the region supporting 192 distinct species of flora, 209 species of fauna, 102 species of birds, with large paddy fields across 635 acres consisting of water canals, marshlands and mangroves across 7,000 acres plush forest.
They allege without considering the protest by the petitioners, the Respondents have taken steps to allow and facilitate vehicles which carry garbage to enter the Muthurajawela Sanctuary without any proper approval or authority and dump garbage with the assistance of 300 members of the Police and Special Task Force. The bench comprised Chief Justice Priyasath Dep and Justice Anil Gooneratne. Dr. Sunil Cooray with Keith de Mel appeared for the Petitioners. Senany Dayaratne appeared for the CMC. Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Rajaratnam appeared for the Attorney General.
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