An attempt to exploit statements by SLFP dissidents Mangala Samaraweera and Sripathy Sooriyaarachchi on Thulawa, a live ITN political programme went awry.
The government had planned to use their speeches to undermine them, well informed sources said. They assertively defended President Mahinda Rajapakse`s administration. Prior to that they were two of the fiercest critics of the UNP and the LTTE, the sources said.
Mystery surrounds the disappearance of several tapes containing their speeches, the sources said. The ITN management has ordered an inquiry. An official claimed that they periodically erased the tapes following instructions received from the `top`.