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* Sri Lankan government Minister warns of mafias, discusses about a common candidate
Mon, May 26, 2014, 09:31 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

May 26, Colombo: A Sri Lankan government minister today warned of the 'mafias' taking control of industrial sectors in the country and urged the government to control them.

General Secretary of the government coalition party, Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) and Minister of Technology and Research Patali Champika Ranawaka said today that the government needed to control the mafias in the industrial sectors such as pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals.

He warned that the people may get the law to their hand against these mafias unless government took control of them.

Addressing a ceremony held today in the National Engineering Research and Development Center, the Minister pointed out that the agrochemicals mafia was so powerful that the government had so far failed to ban eight agrochemicals that are identified as causes for the renal disease spreading in the North Central Province of Sri Lanka.

The government has been criticized for revoking the decision to ban glyphosate, or Roundup, the weedicide by Monsanto that is said to be responsible for the chronic kidney disease (CKD). Meanwhile, the Minister said he had discussions with Maduluwawe Sobitha Thero who is tipped to be the common presidential candidate of the opposition.

His party Jathika Hela Urumaya said during the two-hour discussion the party held with the Thero, they had discussed fruitfully about abolishing the executive presidency and reinstating the 17th Amendment to the Constitution.

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