A writ petition has been filed in the Court of Appeal seeking an order quashing the award for the supply of security stickers to an Indian security printing company by the Excise department.

The applicant, Lasantha Kumara, a resident of Colombo05 is also seeking an order, staying the Commissioner-General of Excise from purchasing any sticker whatsoever or making any payment to the Madras Security Printers, an Indian security printing company.

Filing this petition through counsel Jayamuditha Jayasooriya, the applicant is further seeking an order directing the Commissioner-General of Excise to implement a system to prevent local manufactures of liquor from evading or avoiding the due payment of taxes or levies to the State.

The applicant states that he expects to prevent loss of revenue to a magnitude of several billion following the illegal and unlawful decisions and practices of the Excise Department.


The applicant further said Commissioner General of Excise by his letter dated 19.01.2021 addressed to the Secretary to the Treasury has informed that the affixing of stickers on foreign liquor is successfully continuing with effect from 20.07.2019 and his department could not implement the affixing of stickers on locally manufactured liquor due to practical issues and COVID-19 pandemic though it was to be commenced on 20.08.2019.

The Petitioner states that the Excise Department is obliged to pay a sum of Rs. 32 million every month to Madras Security Printers.

The Petitioner states that according to the information he has received that the Commissioner-General of Excise has awarded the said contract without conducting a proper technical evaluation and also without following tender procedures.

The Petitioner states that the printing of direct codes on bottles and cans could cost only 15 cents which have been the practice adopted in many countries but the Commissioner-General of Excise is now spending about Rs. 2 per bottle which is not a safer method than the printing of direct marking codes.

The Petitioner states that Buddhika Pathirana, Member of Parliament raised the said issue in Parliament on 20th of April 2021 and he pointed out the corrupt practice adopted by the Excise Department by granting the said supply of security stickers and the said company is a blacklisted company in India as well as in several other countries.

The Petitioner states that MP Buddhika Pathirana categorically pointed out that the State has to suffer a loss of over Rs. 1 billion as a result of the corrupt and illegal practice adopted by the Commissioner-General of Excise.


The petitioner further states that this corrupt practice has caused a great foreign exchange loss to the Government of Sri Lanka while it accepts that it is in a grave state of affairs in terms of countries foreign reserves.


The petitioner has cited Minister of Finance Basil Rajapaksa, Secretary to the Ministry of Finance S.R. Attygalle, Commissioner General of Excise M.J. Gunasiri, Madras Security Printers Company and Attorney General as respondents.


This petition is to be taken up for support on August 23.


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