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DateLine Sunday, 17 February 2008

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Government Gazette

25 civil committees to be set up islandwide
 

Twenty-five Civil Committees will be set up countrywide in the most vulnerable places prone to terrorist attacks such as bus stands, railway stations, schools and housing complexes to protect persons and property. Of the proposed 25 committees, 14 will be set up in Colombo, Senior Supdt.of Police, I.M. Karunaratne, Director of the Community Police Unit told the 'Sunday Observer'.

Civil Committees have already been set up in Colombo and Gampaha and more will be set up in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa and Puttalam by the end of next week. However, all 25 Civil Committees will be set up by February 25. Over 25,000 persons have already been mobilised to work in these committees, SSP Karunaratna said.

Under the auspices of Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage the proposed security plan of the government will include the setting up of these Civil Committees in 322 Divisional Secretariats and 141,913 Grama Niladhari Divisions to cover the entire country.

DIG Colombo Range, Nimal Mediweka and Senior Supdt. of Police I. M. Karunaratne have been appointed to liaise with the Civil Committees. In addition the two Superintendents of Police have been appointed to coordinate the work of the Civil Committees in all nine provinces. Meanwhile 10 policemen, consisting of Sub Inspectors and Police Constables drawn from 411 police stations in the country will be attached to the Civil Committees.

In recent times bus stands and railway stations have become vulnerable to terrorist attacks owing to large numbers of people congregating in such places. Special hotlines have been set up at the Police Emergency - 5717171. People can pass information on suspicious persons via the hotline.

Western Province Provincial Road Passenger Transport Authority, J. M. Somasiri said the security plan is being implemented at the Goonasinghapura and Bastian bus stands. It will be extended to other bus stands in the Western Province in due course, he said.

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