Arjuna arrested CPC strike called off


By Rathindra Kuruwita

Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) trade unions have called off their strike after former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Arjuna Ranatunga was arrested yesterday by Colombo Crimes Division officials in connection with a shooting incident that lead to the death of one and wounded two others inside the CPC head office near the Dematagoda flyover on Sunday, President of the CPC General Employees Trade Union Asoka Ranwala said.

"The CPC workers are in shock after one of their colleagues was shot dead inside CPC head office. So we demanded the arrest of Ranatunga because he played a main role in the events that transpired. Now since he has been arrested, we will resume work," he said.

Ranatunga was later produced in court yesterday, police media unit said. Ranatunga was granted bail by Colombo additional magistrate Priyantha Liyanage. The case will be taken up again on December 04. A 34-year-old man, who was shot on Sunday by a security guard of former Minister of Petroleum Resources Development, Ranatunga, succumbed to his injuries the same night, the Police Media Unit said. Two others injured in the incident are being treated at the National Hospital, Colombo.

A security guard opened fire on a crowd of protesters when Ranatunga visited the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation Head Office, Colombo-09.

The police Media Unit said: "Ranatunga went to the CPC head office near the Dematagoda flyover while there was a protest. At that time shots were fired by a security guard of Ranatunga. Three people were wounded and rushed to the National Hospital. One person succumbed to his injuries. The security officer was arrested and Dematagoda police are conducting further investigations."

Meanwhile, addressing the media, last night Ranatunga said some people had tried to kill him when he visited the CPC head office.

On Saturday, the Presidential Secretariat notified all department heads, chairmen of the state corporations, statutory boards and state banks that the tenure of the ministers of the previous government had ended. A Presidential Secretariat team, accompanied by the police, sealed the Health Ministry following information that some unidentified persons were attempting to remove some files.

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