Mervyn Silva saves Astrologer Chandrasiri Bandara
Labour Minister Mervyn Silva had intervened to get Astrologer Chandrasiri Bandara released from the CID, which was holding him in custody after receiving a detention order, Bandaraâ€™s family members said.
Addressing a workshop at the UNPâ€™s Jathika Sevaka Sangamaya (JSS) headquarters, Bandara had predicted that the President would enter a bad period after September 9, 2009 and that Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayake would suddenly assume duties as President in a similar manner in which President D.B. Wijetunge assumed office. He had also predicted that Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and the UNP too would enter a good period.
An audio recording of the speeches made at the workshop had reached the hands of Gamini Gunaratne, also known as Batta, who had in turn handed the tape over to Senior Presidential Advisor Basil Rajapakse. Bandara was later taken into custody by the CID on allegations that he had conspired to topple the government and assassinate the President.
Bandara writes the astrology column for the Irudina news paper and is also a key figure in the UNP propaganda committee. However, following his arrest, it was only Opposition Leaderâ€™s Secretary, Sugath Chandrasekera and a few other UNP parliamentarians who had inquired after him and his family.
When a detention order was issued to hold Bandara in custody for a period of three months, it had been Minister Mervyn Silva, who had come forward to save him.
Silva got Bandara to read his horoscope once a month. He had even taken Bandaraâ€™s wife to meet with the President. During the meeting, Bandaraâ€™s wife had assured to the President that her husband would not act in a manner that would place either the government or the President in any difficulty in future.
Following the assurance given by Bandaraâ€™s wife, the President had ordered the officials to release Bandara after completing the inquiry.
Simultaneous to Bandaraâ€™s arrest another similarly hilarious incident had taken place at the CID.
While the CID arrested Bandara, who claimed the President would be entering a bad period after September, it had also taken into custody another astrologer who had made a contradictory prediction to that made by Bandara.
The CID had continuously questioned this astrologer on what basis he made the prediction that the President would not be entering a bad period after September. Following continuous questioning, the astrologer had said that he made the prediction with the intention of meeting with the President to receive a personal favour.
The CID had released the astrologer after giving him a warning.
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