Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said the Janabalaya Kolambata protest was a huge success and would go on till dawn.
The Joint Opposition’s Jana Balaya Kolambata’ protest rally reached the Lake House Roundabout a short while ago. Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and MPs of JO joined the rally from different locations.
11:58 PM State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene today said the ‘Jana Balaya Kolambata’ protest, which was an attempt made by the joint opposition to certify its next political leader, was a total failure.
Addressing the Jana Balaya Satyagraha, former President Mahinda Rajapaksa said it was because of what he achieved in the North that President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe now have the opportunity to insult him when they went to the North.
10:04 PM The intention of the Jana Balaya Protest is not to express displeasure against the Government but to promote the Rajapaksa family, Telecommunication, Digital Infrastructure and Foreign Employment Minister Harin Fernando said.
A group of artistes also joined the Jana Balaya Kolambata protest.
04:29 PM Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa arrived at Colombo Fort to join the Jana Balaya Kolambata protest. Video
04:27 PM Former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa arrived at Fort to join the Jana Balaya protest.
04:11 PM Deputy Minister of Law and Order Nalin Bandara Jayamaha said strict action would be taken against those who cause the public any hindrance and damage to public property and institutions during the Joint Opposition protest today.
03:41 PM Darley Road in Colombo blocked from Ibbanwala Junction due to Jana Balaya Kolambata protest.
03:40 PM Jana Balaya Kolambata protest march started from several areas in Colombo including Maradana and Town Hall, causing heavy traffic.
Former Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa arrived at former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Official Residence at Wijerama Mawatha in Colombo to attend the Jana Balaya protest.
The security around the President's House, Temple Trees and Parliament was tightened by deploying additional Police personnel because of the Jana Balaya Kolambata protest.
03:03 PM MP Namal Rajapaksa, one of the main organisers of the Jana Balaya Protest, arrives in Fort, Colombo.
02:57 PM MP Namal Rajapaksa arrives at the Bo Gaha Junction in Fort and announced that they have yet to make a decision about the venue to hold the final rally.
JO protest: Up to the people to react to any violence: Akila
It was the general public who should react if any violence broke out as the Joint Opposition protest progressed, UNP General Secretary Akila Viraj Kariyawasam said at a news briefing early today.
02:34 PM “We have not tried to prevent people or protesters coming to Colombo. We have given them freedom. We have only instructed that the public should not be hindered by the protest,” Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe tweeted.
02:31 PM Muslims from Beruwala joining Janabalaya. There seems to be a high level of enthusiasm from the muslim community, Nalaka Godahewa tweeted.
02:14 PM The government says they are not scared of Janabalaya. But all around the city they have started digging the roads to create blockades. Yahapalana democracy at its peak, Nalaka Godahewa said.
02:07 PM As the final coordination efforts are under way for the mass protest, JO leaders including former President Mahinda Rajapaksa will join alongside the people of Sri Lanka at the Bo Gaha Junction in Fort, near the Fort Railway Station, MP Namal Rajapaksa said.
02:04 PM Heavy vehicles were restricted from entering towards Galle Face in Colombo from Kollupitiya Junction and the Ceramic Junction due to the Joint Opposition protest, Police said. Meanwhile, Police officers were seen inspecting long distance buses which are coming towards Colombo, at Katubedda in Moratuwa.
01:39 PM American citizens encouraged to exercise caution and avoid large crowds due to the planned political rally in Colombo today- says @USEmbSL