Hours after the Law and Order Minister Tilak Marapana quit office following allegations that he defended persons involved in the controversial Avant Garde case more ministers are under pressure to quit.
JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake spearheading the campaign against the ministers said all implicated in the alleged scandal should quit the cabinet.
He named Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, who is currently the Justice minister, but Minister Vajira Abeywardena too is among those who have been implicated in backing those involved in the Avant Garde.
Mr Marapana, a President’s Counsel said he was quitting his post as some have claimed that it could hamper ongoing investigations in the Avant Garde case as the Police is which is responsible for the probe comes under his purview.
The controversy over providing weapons of the Defence ministry through a company set up by the state to Avant Garde figured well before the last Presidential elections and again during the campaign of the Parliamentary polls, but all indications have been that the current government has not pursued the case.
An Attorney Generals department which reportedly first indicated that persons responsible for it could be arrested under criminal charges had later it was only a civil case, Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne who is pressing the government to expedite the probe claimed last week.
The resignation of Minister Marapana was seen as the first major set back to the UNP led government which is yet to complete its third month in office.
But, Deputy Minister Ajith Perera says the resignation shows that the government is ‘healthy’ and the minister had quit to pave the way for a fair inquiry.
But, analysts say the allegations against the ministers would reflect on the government which has pledged for ‘Good Governance’.