Jan 25, Colombo: Sri Lankan military authorities have taken action to round up over 59,000 military personnel deserted the ranks after the war against the Tamil Tiger terrorists ended in May 2009.
According to a report in Daily FT, 59,267 military personnel and 239 officers from all three armed forces - Army, Navy and Air Force - have left the ranks without following proper exit procedure.
The Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, responding to a question posed by the opposition United National party (UNP) parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayaka, has informed parliament that these service men have deserted the ranks mostly due to personal issues.
The Ministry has said that warrants for their arrest are being issued to the relevant police divisions where the deserters belong.
According to the Ministry some of the deserters will be reinstated in service prior to dismissing them following the proper procedure.
The Ministry has also alerted the Department of Immigration and Emigration to prevent the deserters from leaving the country.