Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 2 February 2014





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Government Gazette

Army Court to hear tree-felling case

The Sri Lanka Military Police, probing into the alleged felling of a few trees at Bogamuwayaya in the Maha Oya Wildlife Reserve, for construction purposes by soldiers led by a Lieutenant, have detained all the suspects to open military custody, immediately after they were released on bail by the Dehiattakandiya Magistrate on Thursday. Meanwhile, on the direction of the Commander of the Army Lt. Gen. Daya Ratnayake, steps were taken to remove the Commanding Officer of the unit at Borawewa, Welikanda from his post for failure in his duties to convene a Court of Inquiry (C of I) into the incident.

Initial inquiries by the Military Police at Giritale confirmed that the suspects were engaged in the act for the express purpose of constructing a soldiers' billet and a dining hall inside the camp, but had failed to follow Army procedures for collection of such material.

Dehiattakandiya Court had earlier released the officer and 10 soldiers, on cash bail of Rs. 20,000 and surety bail of Rs.100,000 each and fixed the next hearing for March 4. The vehicle has been released on one million rupees surety bail at the same time on Thursday.

If the Army personnel were to be found guilty by the C of I, which will be convened by the Army Directorate of Legal Services, strict disciplinary action will be taken, in keeping with provisions in the Army Act, in line with the Commander's 'Zero tolerance' policy on Army wrongdoers.


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