Massive protest in Colombo; Dozens arrested

(VIDEO) Teachers and Principals stage massive protest in Colombo; Dozens arrested by Police

by Zulfick Farzan 04-08-2021 | 6:35 PM

COLOMBO (News 1st); Sri Lanka Police arrested a total of 42 people and seized 10 vehicles following a massive protest that took place opposite the Presidential Secretariat on Wednesday (04).

The Teachers' and Principals' Trade Unions reached Colombo in motorcades from Kadawatha, Pannipitiya, Welisara, Kandy and Moratuwa demanding solutions to their perennial issues including salary anomalies.

The protestor positioned themselves opposite the Presidential Secretariat for nearly an hour, causing heavy traffic on Galle Road.

Police Spokesperson Senior DIG Ajith Rohana speaking to News 1st said that 26 males and 15 females were arrested.

They are charged with unlawful assembly, obstruction of vehicular movement and main roads, as well violating the Quarantine Rules and Regulations, said the Police Spokesperson adding that the arrested protestors will be produced in court after statements are recorded from them.

The protest opposite the Presidential Secretariat eventually ended with no final decision being reached.

Trade Union Leader Joseph Stalin speaking to the gathering said they will continue with their trade union actions and demanded the government officially announce what would included in the next budget.

He said the protests would reach new heights by next week if the demands are not by the government.

Teachers and Principals have been protesting for almost 24 days all around the country, in an unprecedented show of force.

On the 12th of July, Fourteen trade unions representing teachers and principals went on strike despite calls from the government to give up their trade union action and continue with teaching activities.

The Trade Unions representing Teachers and Principals are making the following key demands :

01. Permanent solution to the perennial salary anomaly issue.

02. Immediate withdrawal of the Kotelawala Defense University Bill

03. Allocation of 6% of GDP for education

04. Permanent solutions to service issues faced by Principals and Teachers.

05. System for Extra-Curricular Activities attended by Teachers and Principals