Batticaloa graduates end protest fast

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 25 June 2008, 11:32 GMT]
Hundreds of unemployed graduates in the Eastern Province ended the fasting campaign Tuesday at 10:00 p.m. outside the Zonal Education Office in Batticaloa, sources in Batticaloa said. The protest against the Eastern Provincial Council (EPC) Chief Minister (CM), Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan (Pillaiyan), for not fulfilling the pledge made to the Association of Graduates of Eastern Province (AGEP), started at 7:00 a.m.

The Chief Minister who intervened when the AGEP launched a one-day token fasting campaign 10th June, promised the Association that he would take action to provide employment for all unemployed graduates of Eastern Province.

However, since CM took no constructive action for nearly two weeks, AGEP resumed their fasting campaign Tuesday.

Meanwhile, after the direct intervention by CM, the fasting campaign ended, the President of AGEP K. Pratheepan said.

Addressing the Graduates Tuesday night 9:00 p.m., the CM promised to provide appointments for all graduates in East within the next three months. The CM also assured the unemployed graduates that, as already decided earlier by higher officials, the appointments scheduled for July would not be delayed for any reason.

The CM also told the gathering that he is due to meet Sri Lanka's President and the Minister of Education 27 June, and all appointments for the graduates in Eastern province would be completed within the next three months.

However, a spokesman for the AGEP commented that each time a fasting campaign is organized the CM customarily intervenes, makes promises, and later fails to take any action.

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