The main opposition United National Party (UNP) and the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) are formulating plans for protest campaigns against the constitutional amendments the Government wants to introduce.
Whether such a campaign will be carried out jointly or separately will hinge on the outcome of informal consultations now under way between the two parties.
The UNP campaign, its leader Ranil Wickremesinghe told the Sunday Times, would include pocket meetings at grassroots level, distribution of booklets detailing the dangers the amendments portend, seminars and public rallies.
"The Tissa Vitharana Committee was examining the abolition of the executive presidency.
A Select Committee headed by D.E.W. Gunasekera studied changes to the 17th Amendment to the Constitution. Reforms in election laws were examined by a Select Committee headed by Dinesh Gunawardena. It is whilst these processes have been initiated that drastic constitutional changes are being proposed," he said.
Mr. Wickremesinghe said the Government had proposed the setting up of a 45-member senate comprising five each from a provincial council. They were to be elected by Council members. It is on the basis that no additional payments or vehicles need to be provided to Senators since they were receiving them in their capacity as provincial councillors.
Mr. Wickremesinghe said the party's parliamentary affairs committee met on Friday to formulate plans to oppose the changes to the constitution.
JVP Leader, Somawansa Amerasinghe told the Sunday Times, "We are going to tell the people that the constitutional changes are only to confer more powers on a family and will not benefit the people."
JVP party branches, he said, had already embarked on a programme going from town to town and village to village "educating the people of the dangers they face."