Constituent partner of Sri Lankan government may vote against land amendment bill

Feb 20, Colombo: Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC), a constituent partner of the Sri Lankan government, says the party would vote against the proposed amendments to the Town and Country Planning Ordinance.

The Town and Country Planning Amendment Bill is currently facing much controversy since it is believed the central government is to take over certain powers vested with the provincial councils.

The SLMC High Command has decided to oppose the Bill in the provincial councils and if and when it is presented before parliament.

SLMC General Secretary M.T. Hassan Ali has said that the SLMC would oppose the amendment bill since it interfered with powers vested with the provincial councils.

The proposed amendments to the Ordinance would allow the government to acquire lands within municipal and urban areas for economic, social, historical, environmental and religious purposes.

The Supreme Court had directed the government to present the Ordinance to all the provincial councils for approval before it is presented in the parliament.

The Eastern Provincial Council is to take up the bill for a vote on the 27th.

Eastern Provincial Council Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan has said his support for the bill is based on whether the changes proposed by him and the council are included in the bill.

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