No love lost between Polls Chief and Police
Inspector General of Police Mahinda Balasuriya yesterday denied reports that the Elections Commissioner had ceased to communicate with him about violations connected with election laws in the run up to the forthcoming Presidential election.
The Police Chief admitted that the Elections Commissioner had made a statement to that effect earlier but withdrawn it on January 12.
When pointed out by a journalist that though the election laws clearly said that huge cutouts, posters and banners should not be displayed, President’s cutouts could still be seen in public places, IGP said the police removed them but they were put up again.
The police had removed 2,597 cutouts, 78,027 posters, 857 banners and 10,091 other unlawful propaganda items, he said.
The IGP assured that all propaganda material relating to the election would be removed after the midnight on the 23rd.
The propaganda material removed in Ratnapura weighed 1,033 kilos while the amount was 10,900 kilos in Nugegoda, he said.
DIG Crimes Anura Senanayake said up to date (Jan. 18) there had been 694 complaints, of which 669 were of minor incidents.
In 387 cases the suspects had not been named by the complainants while in 93 others, the warring parties had reached settlement.
IGP admitted that violence had escalated in Polonnaruwa owing to the failure of the police to nip it in the bud.