Almanac case against Basil fixed for March 13 | Daily News

Almanac case against Basil fixed for March 13

The almanac case filed against two accused including former Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa was yesterday fixed for March 13 by the Colombo High Court.

The Court was informed that the Court of Appeal has extended its Interim Order staying any further proceeding into the controversial almanac case before High Court Judge Gihan Kulatunga currently presiding over Court No.6 of the Colombo High Court, until February 2. Accordingly, the case filed against the two accused including former Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa for allegedly misappropriating Rs. 29.4 million from funds belonging to the Divi Neguma Department was yesterday fixed for a calling date.

The Attorney General had filed indictments against the former Minister and former Director General of the Divi Neguma Department Kithsiri Ranawaka in the Colombo High Court for allegedly printing five million almanacs with the image of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, costing Rs. 29.4 million, to be used as election propaganda material, during the January 2015 Presidential election.

The Attorney General alleged that by printing these almanacs between November 23 and December 31, 2014, the accused had attempted to influence citizens of this country to vote for Presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa.

The AG maintained that the act of the accused deems him guilty of the offence of bribery in accordance with Section 79 of the Presidential Elections Act No 15 of 1981.

Furthermore, the two accused had been charged under the Public Property Act No. 12 of 1982 to file misappropriation charges. The AG had listed 32 people including former Election Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya as witnesses in the case. Senior State Counsel Sudarshana Silva appeared for the Attorney General. President’s Counsel Anil Silva with Jayantha Weerasinghe PC appeared for the accused.


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