Petrol Saga

Ishara S. Kodikara | AFP | Getty Images Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, center, speaks to supporters at the prime minister's official residence in Colombo on December 16, 2018, after he was reappointed as prime minister by Sri Lanka's president, the same man who fired him from the job nearly two months ago.

Dec 27, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s main opposition United National Party (UNP) plans to file a contempt-of-court case against the government for its refusal to obey a Supreme Court order to reduce petrol prices, a media report said. The Daily Mirror newspaper said UNP wants to file a contempt-of-court case against the Cabinet, the Finance Ministry and state-owned Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) for not complying with the court ruling to reduce the price to 100 rupees a litre.

Also named in the petition would be the Colombo-listed Lanka IOC, a unit of Indian Oil Corp, and fuel retail stations.

The newspaper quoted UNP parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayake as saying that, based on current global prices, petrol should cost only 24 rupees a litre.

But, he told a news conference, the government sold it at 122 rupees a litre, ignoring the recent judicial order.

Diesel, which should cost only 39 rupees a litre, was sold at 80 rupees, he said.

“UNP national organizer S B Dissanayake was jailed for contempt of court for two years,” Karunanayake said.

“Similarly, those who do not comply with the court ruling can also be charged with contempt-of- court. We will not hesitate to take action against them.