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Sri Lanka student union calls to stop government from 'destroying free education'

2013 Jul 10

A student union affiliated to Sri Lanka's Marxist party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) says the government's agenda to destroy free education should be defeated by carrying out a mass scale protest.

Condemning the arrest of Inter University Student's Federation (IUSF) Convener, Sanjeeva Bandara, the National Organizer of the Socialist Students' Union (SSU) Dr. Nalinda Jayatissa said the government that destroying the country's free education.

"The government is currently engaged in selling degrees in state universities and establishing private universities. It is the government that sells degrees of state universities for Rs.7.5 million. The government also prepares laws and regulations for private medical schools to sell medical degrees for Rs.6.5 million. It is therefore the government that is destroying education, a right of the public or a valuable property owned by the public," he said in a statement.

He noted that the students' movement is struggling to protect this public property from the government.

According to Dr. Jayatissa, the police are carrying out repressive orders issued by the government.

He accused the government of targeting student leaders and activists who are struggling to protect free education.

Dr. Jayatissa pointed out that 188 university students were suspended from attending classes during the month of June.

"Minister S.B. Dissanayake himself has admitted that the total number of students who have been suspended from attending classes is more than 300. During the month of June, 20 students were arrested by the police. Student agitations were attacked; students' unions were banned. Taking the convener of IUSF before court is a continuation of this repression. We demand the government to immediately stop suppressing students," he stressed.

Colombo Fort Magistrate Thilina Gamage ordered to remand the IUSF leader Sanjeeva Bandara until July 15 for violating his bail conditions by participating in protests while released on bail in a case on damaging public property during an agitation in August 2012.

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