P’ment to receive report on Batticaloa campus early June

Prof. Ashu Marasinghe, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Education, an extension of the Parliamentary oversight committee on education and human resource development, said its report of the controversial Batticaloa campus will be finalised by the end of this month. Investigations have been completed, he said, and the committee will submit its report to parliament in early June.

According to a statement released by the Department of Government Information, the members of the subcommittee had visited Batticaloa on Friday (17) for an inspection tour of the campus site which is still under construction and met Chairman of the Batticaloa Campus Private Ltd Governor M. L. M. Hizbullah and the Director of Hiras Foundation under which the private campus is being built.

The Batticaloa campus, alleged to have been mooted as a higher education institute on the principles of Sharia Law, drew flak after the Easter Sunday terror attacks. The subcommittee is also investigating the funding sources of the campus project, for which there is documentary proof of having received Rs. 3.6 billion from a private trust fund in Saudi Arabia between 2016 to 2017.

Governor Hizbullah reiterated his denial that it will serve as an institute for Sharia Law and said any attempt by the State to take over would be illegal since it has not been approved nor gazetted as a private university so far.

“Once tabled in Parliament the report will be referred to the Cabinet of Ministers by the Speaker. The Cabinet is expected to take a decision based on the recommendations of the subcommittee, within six weeks,” said Prof Marasinghe.

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