Nov 18, Colombo: The tense situation occurred in Gintota last night has completely been brought under control, with law and order being established in the area, Law and Order Minister Sagala Ratnayaka said.
The Minister, issuing a special statement, extended his appreciation to all parties and all media institutions that acted responsibly to minimize the damages and said he immediately after the incident contacted the Inspector General of Police and gave all necessary instructions.
The Minister said by now, the security in Gintota has been strengthened and the law and order has been restored to control the situation.
Additional Police battalions, the Police Special Task Force, the Anti-riot Squad and the military were called in last night to bring the situation under control, he said.
Under the instructions of the President and the Prime Minister, police curfew was imposed on the area until 9 am this morning (18).
"I am aware that some political groups are now desperately making unsuccessful attempts to make this minor incident a great Sinhala-Muslim communal clash. I urge the public not to be misled by their false propaganda of these extremist political gangs," Minister Ratnayake said.
"The members of those extremist political gangs are now in the process of disseminating false videos and news on Facebook to stir up communal sentiments. I tell them to stop these actions immediately," the Minister stressed.
"I stress that stern action will be taken in accordance with the law, against everyone, who spread propaganda inciting racial and religious clashes, regardless of their status and political affiliations," he said.
"At this time, all of us should work to minimize the damage," Law and Order Minister said.
"I repeat to those not to take advantage of the situation and spread rumors to achieve their petty political gains," the Minister stressed.
The Police had arrested 19 people over the last night's violence in Gintota, Galle. The curfew imposed Friday night has been lifted at 9 am Saturday.