Eastern Provincial Council Minister M. L. A. M. Hisbullah flew to Batticaloa yesterday morning from Colombo to meet Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakantha (Pillaiyan) at his office in the aftermath of Thursday s violence in Kattankudy where five killings took place.
Hisbullah was sworn in as a Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Thursday forenoon at the Presidential Secretariat.
Before meeting the Chief Minister, Hisbullah had a long telephone conversation with Muslim Congress leader Rauf Hakeem and both agreed that all preventive measures should be put in place to prevent Thursday s incident taking a communal turn.
Hisbullah and Pillaiyan mapped out strategies to prevent a repetition.
Both agreed that the culprits should be brought to book and Police were asked to take all preventive measures. After the one-hour long one-to-one meeting, the duo was joined by religious dignitaries belonging to Hindu, Muslim and Christian faiths.
Thereafter, the talks centred round development oriented projects in the East and in the presence of the religious leaders Hisbullah and Pillaiyan pledged to work in cordiality and iron out any differences through talks.
The Police curfew imposed on Thursday afternoon in Kattankudy was lifted yesterday morning and all shops were opened for business. Reports reaching Colombo said the town was returning to normalcy.
The five bodies were yesterday morning handed over to the relatives by the Batticaloa Hospital authorities and the funerals of the Muslims killed were scheduled for last afternoon, while those of the Tamils were due on Saturday. Police were scheduled to provided strict security during the funerals and throughout the town in the days following the funerals.
Special police teams directed by SSP Ananda Nanayakkara commenced investigations into the killings. Statements of several eye witnesses have been recorded.