Case filed by SJB fixed for October 9
A case filed by Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) General Secretary Ranjith Madduma Bandara and MP Kavinda Jayawardena seeking an order to charge compensation of over US$ 6.4 billion from seven agencies including the shipping company and the Singapore and London companies for the damage caused by the X-Press Pearl vessel, was yesterday fixed for October 9 by the Colombo Commercial High Court.
This case was taken up before Colombo Commercial High Court Judge Pradeep Hettiarachi and the High Court Judge ordered the prosecution to produce their facts on October 9.
Eight companies including the owner, insurer and operator of the X-Press Pearl and the local agent Sea Consortium Lanka have been named as the respondents.
The Colombo Commercial High Court has been sought to issue relevant orders as per the provisions of the Marine Pollution Prevention Act.
The petitioners claim that due to the fact that the ship in question caught fire on the coast of Colombo, the fuel in the ship mixed with the water, causing severe environmental and economic damage to the country. It has been pointed out in the petition that there has been huge ocean pollution due to the leakage of chemicals from the ship and air pollution has also taken place through the mixing of those chemicals into the air.
As a result of this, a large number of sea creatures including turtles died and a large number of fishermen lost their livelihood, the petition says.
The petitioners also state that the tourism industry and the hotel industry were also greatly prejudiced. The petition also states that the relevant shipping companies are obliged to compensate the aggrieved parties due to this accident that occurred in Sri Lankan waters.
Accordingly, the relevant petition has sought orders to be issued separately to charge compensation of more than US $ 6.4 billion from the respondents for the two separate cases.