Sri Lanka’s tax office back in business

Feb 25, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan tax payers are being asked by the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) to continue to pay their dues, as the island’s tax office is operating as usual after last week’s Tamil Tiger air attack on its headquarters building. A government minister said the IRD’s tax data base had not been lost when a Tiger light aircraft crashed into the building last Friday after it was hit by anti-aircraft fire while on a suicide mission to the air force headquarters across the street.

“There is no problem for Sri Lankan tax payers,” said deputy finance minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said Tuesday.

“From now on they can come to the IRD office and make their payments or sort out any tax matters they might have,”

“The computer system is not damaged and all documents are in a safe location with us.

“The files were not harmed by the explosion, the subsequent fire or from water damage when the fire fighters put the flames out.”

Treasury officials said even though the 12th floor was gutted after the aircraft crashed into that level, the file room was not damaged.

Siyambalapitiya said government engineers had given the finance ministry the green light to re-occupy the IRD building.

“The IRD building wa