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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Interim injunctions against the postponement of the LG polls granted & ordered to release funds (Full text of the FR petition)

Today Supreme Court of Sri Lanka granted the both injections requested in the fundamental rights petition filed by the Secretary General of the  opposition Samgi Jan BalaegayaRanjith Bandara MP against the postponement of the postponement of the local government polls in Sri Lanka .
The application was taken up in three judge bench of Supreme Court Justices P. Padman Surasena, Janak De Silva, and Priyantha Jayawardena.
The  interim order  prevents Finance Secretary, and the Attorney General (who represents the Finance Minister) from withholding any funds allocated by the 2023 Budget for the Local Government Poll 2023.
The second interim order prevents the withholding of any funds from the Government Printer ( for printing ballot papers).
The application will be taken up for examination from the 26th of May 2023
Both injections granted follows as detailed in the petition:
i) issue an interim order, restraining and/or preventing the 01st and/or 02nd (i.e.Honourable Minister of Defence, Finance, Economic Stabilization, National Policies,
Technology, Investment Promotion, Women, Child Affairs and Social Empowerment represented by the Honourable Attorney-General) Respondents and their servants
and agents and any other state functionary from withholding any funds allocated by the Activity Budget Estimates for the fiscal year of 2023 and/or the Budget for the
year 2023 for the purpose of conducting Local Government Polls 2023 until the final determination of this Application, subject to such terms, if any, as to Your Lordships’
Court sees fit;
j) issue an interim order, restraining and/or preventing the 01st and/or 02nd (i.e. Honourable Minister of Defence, Finance, Economic Stabilization, National Policies,
Technology, Investment Promotion, Women, Child Affairs and Social Empowerment represented by the Honourable Attorney-General) Respondents and their servants
and agents and any other state functionary from withholding any funds allocated by the Activity Budget Estimates for the fiscal year of 2023 and/or the Budget for the
year 2023 for the purpose of conducting Local Government Polls 2023, from the 08th Respondent, until the final determination of this Application, subject to such terms, if
any, as to Your Lordships’ Court sees fit.
Leave to proceed with this Application was granted.
Petition further requested that,
b) in particular, direct the 01st and/or 02nd Respondents to tender to Your Lordships ’ Court the purported circular prohibiting the financing of the Local Government Polls
2023;
c) declare that the Petitioner’s Fundamental Rights guaranteed under Article 12(1) have been infringed and/or there is a likelihood of imminent infringement by the
01st and/or 02nd Respondents by reason of the non-provision of adequate funds to the 03rd, 04th, 05th, 06th and/07th Respondents to conduct the Local Government
Polls 2023;
d) declare that the Petitioner’s Fundamental Rights guaranteed under Article 14(1)(a) have been infringed and/or there is a likelihood of imminent infringement by the
01st and/or 02nd Respondents by reason of the non-provision of adequate funds to the 03rd, 04th, 05th, 06th and/07th Respondents to conduct the Local Government
Polls 2023;
e) declare that the Petitioner’s right to exercise franchise guaranteed by Articles 03 and 04 has been infringed by reason of the non-provision of adequate funds to the
03rd, 04th, 05th, 06th and/07th Respondents to conduct the Local Government Polls 2023 and/or an imminent violation of the said rights;
f) declare that the decisions and/or directions of the 01st and/or 02nd (i.e. Honourable Minister of Defence, Finance, Economic Stabilization, National Policies, Technology,
Investment Promotion, Women, Child Affairs and Social Empowerment represented by the Honourable Attorney-General) Respondents to not provide adequate funds allocated by the Activity Budget Estimates for the fiscal year of 2023 and/or the  Budget for the year 2023 for the purpose of conducting Local Government Polls 2023 to be null and void, and of no force or avail in law;
g) declare and/or Order that the funds allocated to the Election Commission for conducting elections other than parliamentary elections as per the Activity Budget
Estimates for the fiscal year of 2023 and/or the Budget for the year 2023 be disbursed in a due manner in order to enable the Election Commission to hold the
Local Government polls 2023;
h) declare and/or order the 08th Respondent to tender postal voting poll cards to the 03rd, 04th, 05th, 06th and/or 07th Respondents to carry out the postal voting process
of the Local Government polls 2023;
Read the full text of the petition: Local Authorities Finance FR 

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