Public Debate

Sept 18, 2009 (LBO) – The 28th LBR-LBO chief executive forum debated the economic impact of public interest litigation, with a four member panel made up of legal and private sector representatives. Presentations were made by Rohan Samarajiva, head of LirneAsia, a think tank and a former telecom regulator, Preethi Jayawardena chief executive of Chemanex, Chandra Jayaratne, former chairman of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, K Kanag-Isvaran, President’s Counsel and Arittha Wikramanayake, precedent partner of Nithya Partners and former securities regulator.

The discussion was moderated by Shamindra Kulamannage, producer of Lanka Business Report.

Shamindra Kulamannage: May I start with Mr. Kanag-Isvaran and Mr. Wikramanayake. You both referred to the application of PIL (Public Interest Litigation). The experience coming out of India is a fairly broad application of these. No doubt it benefits in cases concerning human rights, environment etc. But should essentially complicated public transactions be challenged in the same way you would approach, say an environmental case, or a human rights case?

K Kanag-Isvaran: Well, this is one of the problems which I believe has to be addre