The Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) and Bodu Jana Peramuna (BJP) called on the President to appoint a commission with powers afforded to it to investigate into the destruction of the environment and the natural resources, to punish wrongdoers and to obtain compensation.

In a letter written to President Maithripala Sirisena this week, Chief Executive Officer of the BBS and Chairman of the BJP, Dr. Dilanthe Withanage said that the destruction of the environment and the natural resources was a crime thousand times more dangerous than large scale, massive financial fraud.

The destruction that has taken place must be studied and then steps must be taken to undo the wrongs, he noted, adding that a national discourse was necessary in order to come up with preventive measures, and for this a multiparty summit must be called. A mechanism must be established to strengthen the civil society to tackle this issue, he remarked.

The protection of the environment along with the natural resources must be a part of education at all levels, he observed.

“The Military must be utilized in the protection of the environment. The deforestation in places such Wilpattu must be stopped. This is a constitutional responsibility of the State and the Government and they have failed to do so. Most of those engaged in orchestrating such destruction hold high posts in Sirisena’s Government and did so during the previous Government too. This is a matter for the civil administration. The Ministry in charge of the subject, the employees of the said Ministry and the said Ministry’s mechanism for addressing this does not function properly,” he pointed out.