Massive cheque fraud busted in Sri Lanka

  • 9 Feb 2008 03:54:26 GMT

    Fraud is common place in Sri Lanka. It`s a way of life. Nothing unusual.

    The president does it, ministers do it, MP`s do it and even clerks and peons do it.

  • 9 Feb 2008 04:37:27 GMT

    It is NOT a fraud affecting SL. It affects some foreign Banks and we don`t know whether the perpetrators are Lankans/former Lankans.

    To blame SL for this is barking up the wrong tree.

  • 9 Feb 2008 08:46:41 GMT


    True! The fraud does not affect the State BUT

    It`s a fraud committed with the connivance of some Sri Lankans! That part is missing in the news article but is now known in commercial circles in Colombo. That`s why the CID and not Interpol is involved. Fraud is second nature to most Sri Lankans beginning from top to bottom! )

    Oyath lankaawe, mamath lankaawey!

    Lankaawey ohoma thamai I don`t know why!

  • 9 Feb 2008 10:13:53 GMT


    Are the guys who intercepted the cheques Lankans/former Lankans?

    To say fraud is second nature to Sri Lankans is a bit too harsh, I would say. While almost all our politicians are crooks, the people at large are the ones who get cheated. Like politicians most holding top positions/positions of influence are also corrupt. Taking the total population of the country, how many would that amount to? a few hundred thousand. Even if it were a million, it will be still less than one-twentieth i.e 5% of the population.

    That being the case, is it fair to call all Sri Lankans frauds?

    Recently, a very close friend obtained two payments running into a few million rupees each from a government department without stepping into the Finance Department or speaking to any one from the Finance Dept. even by phone. The transaction was a land purchased by the Dept. and he got the cheques from the Legal Office after signing the deeds. Quite surprisingly, he made no deals with any one in the Dept. and not a cent or any other gratification paid to any body. Can you believe that such a thing can happen in Sri Lanka?

    My friend, himself a straight guy, thanked the officials involved profusely and thats all. He has tried to offer some gifts after getting the payment but they have refused to accept and they are all Sinhalese.

  • 9 Feb 2008 10:30:46 GMT


    [Are the guys who intercepted the cheques Lankans/former Lankans?]

    Lankans are lankans whether former or present. The leopard never changes it`s spots!

    True! All Sri Lankans are not corrupt. That`s why I said fraud is second nature to `MOST` Sri Lankans and not `ALL` Sri Lankans.

    I too have got many things done at the RMV without giving a cent as a bribe and without knowing any one either. Even with the Customs guys I have always been straight forward and not have had any problems so far! The RMV and the Customs you would know are renowned for the corruption.

    BUT the crux of the matter is that there are quite a lot out there who wouldn`t mind getting their palms oiled and pockets lined the `easy` way, given the chance!

    One reason for those in govt service to resist these gratifications is traps set by the Bribery Commissioner` Dept. Sprats are getting caught at a rate of course while the sharks are still at bay.

    Another reason is the individual these guys deal with. An experienced bribe taker in any govt. dept will know whom to tap and whom not to tap.

    You said your friend is a straight guy. The bribe takers can sense that.

  • 9 Feb 2008 10:52:45 GMT

    Paranoia blinds people.


    The president wrongly determines the guilty and let the real culprits escape.

    IGP Victor Perera becomes the jury and the judge when he is supposed to be responsible for law enforcement. Real culprts were allowed to escape in MP Maheswaran`s murder case.

    The institutions are used to serve the corrupt politicians and the criminals are either smuggled out using diplomatic passports or allowed to escape bail.

  • 9 Feb 2008 16:04:37 GMT


    [BUT the crux of the matter is that there are quite a lot out there who wouldn`t mind getting their palms oiled and pockets lined the `easy` way, given the chance! ]

    Can`t disagree with you on that. The main reason, without doubt, is the poor salaries the govt. servants get. If the salaries increase at the speed of sound the cost of living goes up at the speed of light. So the govt. servants are forced to resort to the palm oil. Can`t really blame them, can you. Those who keep clean, though few, deserve all the respect and admiration.

    [You said your friend is a straight guy. The bribe takers can sense that.]

    My friend too can spot a bribe taker. In the case I quoted, he is one hundred per cent certain the people involved are honest.

  • 9 Feb 2008 17:57:01 GMT

    Frauds are not strange to Sri Lanka. Saturday The Island reports about a bribery that involved former deputy cultural minister Prof: A.V. Surweera. Can you believe that? If these people are like this, from where we should find politicians to run the country?

  • 9 Feb 2008 19:20:14 GMT

    The culprits whoever they are must be apprehended and severely punished.

  • 10 Feb 2008 05:23:08 GMT


    [The All Ceylon Health Services Union (ACHSU) wants the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC) to fast-track the investigation into the alleged Rs. 500 million fraud by high-ranking officials of the Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry.]

    [ACHSU Deputy Secretary Gamini Kumarasinghe told The Nation that it has already been three months since the day when union members were questioned but Health and Nutrition Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, Ministry Secretary Dr. H.A.P.Kahandaliyanage and other concerned officials are yet to be questioned by the commission.]

    [Meanwhile, the CIABOC Investigation Director Neville Guruge told The Nation that they had to go through the complaints since they were serious issues. He said the commission would not be able to settle the matter according to the timelines and demands of the complainants.]

    [ We have started to go through the complaints thoroughly and methodically and need some time to complete the inquiry. We do not want to go through it in a careless fashion, Guruge said.]