An attempt to dismantle shops located in the vicinity of the Digana, Kundasale golf course on the pretext of the recent SAARC summit, has been revealed.
It is understood that the UPFA-controlled Kundasale Pradeshiya Sabha had sent out official letters to some 28 shop-owners informing them that heads of state were to visit the golf course during the summit.
Pradeshiya Sabha chairman Asela Ekanayaka brought up the matter at a council meeting, at which UNP raised objections to the letter.
Opposition leader Anura Seneviratne said the shop-keepers could not be evicted overnight. He pointed out that the shops had been functioning for more than 30 years, and that the owners possessed supporting legal documents issued by the former District Development Councils, which were in operation at the time.
Following protests from the opposition, the plan to demolish the shops was suspended.
The Sunday Times learns that there were no plans for any SAARC heads of state to visit the Digana golf links.
Meanwhile, by way of explanation, a Kundasale Pradeshiya Sabha spokesman said the council was only trying to get the buildings removed, as some were unauthorised structures and not built according to official building guidelines. He said he could not comment on the chairman’s letter.
Mr. Ekanayaka was not available for comment.