The Court of Appeal has issued a writ of mandamus against the Secretary to the Treasury and the Compensation Tribunal to pay the Seylan BankPLC a sum of Rs.96.6 million over a mortgage loan granted under Revival of Underperforming Enterprise or Underutilized Assets Act.

The applicant, Seylan BankPLC, states that Ceylinco Leisure Properties had been vested, with the Secretary to the Treasury under Revival of Underperforming Enterprise or Underutilized Assets Act No. 43 of 2011  enacted in November 2011. A competent authority was appointed, in respect of this property. At the time of vesting, the petitioner Bank had granted a loan in the form of a mortgage to the property that belongs to the Urban Development Authority who had leased out the property to Ceylinco Homes International Limited (Lotus Tower). The said lessee had borrowed money as a loan from the petitioner bank with the consent of the Urban Development Authority.

As of 31st December 2011, a sum of LKR 3,410,654,094.65 was due from CeylincoHomes International (Lotus Tower) on the mortgage for this amount. The applicant made a claim under Act No. 43 of 2011 to the compensation Tribunal. After an inquiry, the compensation Tribunal awarded compensation to the applicant in the sum of Rs. 2,146,415,239.80 on 20th November 2013.

In terms of Act 43 of 2011, it is the duty of the Secretary to the Treasury to pay the compensation awarded for and on behalf of the Government of Sri Lanka. The Compensation Tribunal is also liable to settle the compensation awarded. Therefore, the applicant requested from respondents by letter dated 29th January 2014 to pay the money.

The applicant states that after repeated inquiries by the applicant,

the respondents agreed to pay the compensation by or about January 2015.

The applicant further states, that the 1st respondents failed to comply with the Supreme Court order and gravely prejudicing the Petitioner Bank and its stakeholders.

A total of Rs. 1,179,937,389.87 had been paid out of Rs. 2,146,415,239.80 at the time the petition was taken up for argument. The Petitioner himself has acknowledged receiving a sum of Rs. 1,179,937,389.57. It was argued that if a part is paid, it is the duty to pay the balance.

Therefore, the Court felt that the writ of mandamus compelling the Secretary to the Treasury and the Compensation Tribunal to pay the Petitioner bank a sum of Rs 96,647,789 should be issued.

Court of Appeal two-judge-bench comprised Justice Mohammed Laffar and K.K.A.V. Swarnadhipathi.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here