Police bans prayer meetings

[TamilNet, Thursday, 30 July 1998, 23:59 GMT]
Prayer meetings to be held at places of religious worship and schools to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the anti-Tamil riots of 1983 were dashed yesterday, when the police and military authorities in Batticaloa issued orders against holding them , said sources in Batticaloa.

The Prayer meetings were organised by a joint committee of the People's Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) and Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF).

Representatives of the groups were told yesterday morning that their plans would have to be shelved. Following this, no commemorative ceremonies took place in schools or places of religious worship.

The groups, however, did not contest the order, said sources.

This is because of disenchantment with the Sri Lanka Government (SLG) following the failure of Sri Lanka President Chandrika Kumaratunga and Deputy Minister of Defence Anuruddha Ratwatte to respond to the fax these parties sent on Monday, about the highhanded action of the police which tore and destroyed the black flags hoisted in shops to commemorate the 1983 riots.

But it is believed that the leadership of the respective parties will take up the issue with the SLG.

The groups also did not wish to draw the attention of the public to what they feel is a patent failure of their political stance on the ethnic issue, said sources.


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