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Speeches given by Mr.Bandaranaike on Culture and Religion.

A speech on Anuradhapura Preservation Scheme

Hon Members will remember that a difficulty has existed which has been brought to the notice of the Ministers, the State Council and the public for many years. Even peti­tions have been presented on the subject from time to time and motions moved, I think by my hon. Friends the Member for Colombo Central (Mr. A. E. Goonesinha) and the hon. Member for Dumbara (Mr. A. Ratnayake) and others during the past seven or eight years. The difficulty that exists is this: the Town of Anuradhapura is administered by an Urban Council at present. It will also be realized that Anuradhapura contains not only buildings which are of the utmost importance from the antiquarian point of view, but also sites that are most sacred from the point of view of Buddhists. Unfortunately, under the Urban Councils Ordinance or any other Ordinance that exists, it is not pos­sible to prevent buildings coming up on the most sacred sites, even such buildings as butchers' stalls, and so on.

The Urban Councils Ordinance requires that authority be given by the Chairman of the Urban Council to an applicant to put up a building on any site within the administrative limits of the Council, provided that certain matters, such as the nature of the building, the number of doors, windows. and so on, required by the Housing Ordinance, are complied with. There is no power to refuse permission to put up a building as long as the building complies with the regula­tions framed under the Housing Ordinance of 1915....... (continued)