Oct 22, Colombo: Sri Lanka's Marxist party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) today called on the government to completely withdraw the two gazette notifications granting permission to two new casino projects and the massive tax concessions granted to another casino project in Colombo.
JVP politburo member, parliamentarian Anura Kumara Dissanayake said that there was no point in holding back the legislation saying amendments would be introduced to them.
"The move to hold back the legislation due to the massive protest in the country is similar to an ostrich hiding his head in sand during times of turbulence. It is not the answer," Dissanayake noted.
He observed that the latest move by the government does not show a change in the government's policy on casinos, but simply a move pushed by massive objections raised against the setting up of casinos.
"The government considered tourism to be its main revenue generator and therefore ignored all other sectors. Factories were shut down and the production process was not improved. The government is looking only at benefiting a few businessmen affiliated to it," Dissanayake charged.
The government today decided to temporarily suspend the presentation of the gambling bill to parliament and said it will present the bill after amendments at a later date.