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Army takes control over Dambulla market .

The Army has taken over control at the Dambulla Economic centre – a day after police and farmers clashed during a protest agaisnt the law on compulsory use of plastic crates to transport vegetables.  More than 300 army personnel have been deployed in the Dambulla Economic Centre, despite only a few lorries turning up with vegetables. Most shops remains closed as the usual number of lorries failed to turn up.

“Few lorries which have brought in small quantities of vegetables are seen parked outside. But the overall situation is that there is a sharp drop vegetables coming to the market’, the sundaytimesonline correspondent said..

In Colombo at the Manning market the army moved into the market a shortwhile back and ordered all vendors inside the market to move out. Almost all of the vendors have refrained from opening their stalls today with hardly any vegetables coming from the outstations.

Despite claims by Consumer Affairs Minister Jhonston Fernando that he will not revise the rule,  few other ministers in the government were of the opinion that they should reconsider the implementation of the regulation.

Meanwhile vegetable prices were increasing steadily with the shortage of vegetables in the market.

Our Nuwara Eliya correspondent Shelton Hettiaracchchi said that farmers in the area were also agaisnt the new regulation and the supply to the market had dropped by about 50 per cent.

Picture above captures a deserted Dambulla Economic Centre


No vegetables in the market yet: 83 protestors arrested

(Srilankamirror) – No lorries transported vegetables and fruits today (Dec. 14) as well to Colombo’s Manning Market and other economic centres.

 Farmers are continuing to protest the compulsory use of plastic containers in the transportation of their produce.

 Police have arrested 83 protestors during yesterday.

 President of the Manning Market Traders Association Lal Hettige said not a single vegetable lorry came to the market this morning.

 Only two lorry-loads of potatoes were unloaded last night at the Dambulla economic centre, which is being guarded by police and the Army.

 At the Meegoda economic centre, only one vegetable lorry had arrived.

 Internal trade minister Johnston Fernando warned that the government would act against anyone trying to sabotage activities at economic centres.

 He maintained that the law on plastic containers would not be withdrawn for any reason.

 The minister said that he was prepared to make arrangements to sell vegetables at wholesale prices at the Narahenpita economic centre.

 During agitations by farmers in Dambulla and Bandarawela yesterday, police arrested 83 protestors.

 Police spokesman SP Ajith Rohana said teargas had to be used to disperse the demonstrators.

 Four policemen were injured and two police vehicles damaged during these incidents.

 Minister Fernando alleged that these protests were being planned by middlemen, adding that the government would never inconvenience the farmers.


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