Muslim traders will be welcomed back at the Wennappuwa weekly fair from Monday after the local Magistrate accepted a police plea that no-one should be excluded because of their race or ethnicity.
The issue arose after Wennapuwa Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman Susantha Perera issued a notice banning Muslim traders from participating in the weekly fair.
He told RepublicNext that he made this decision after Sinhalese traders and businessmen in the Dankotuwa area had presented to him a signed petition claiming that they don’t feel safe with the Muslim traders’ presence at the marketplace.
In response the Officer in Charge of the Wennappuwa Police station Inspector Thilina Hettiarachchi informed courts of the matter and asked for a ruling.
The Magistrate today ordered that all traders regardless of their ethnicity be permitted to participate in the fair.
Hettiarachchi told RepublicNext that “all the lawyers at the Bar” were on the side of the Pradeshiya Sabha Chairman when the hearings were held.
“But the Magistrate was strong,” he said