Fuel Crisis Hoax CPC goes to the CID

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By 2017-11-21

BY RAVI LADDUWAHETTY

The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) lodged a complaint with the Criminal Investigations Department ( CID) yesterday (20) following countrywide panic after a scurrilous Short Message Service (SMS) stated that there was a petrol shortage beginning Sunday night.

We have made a complaint to the CID on this serious issue which caused panic for no apparent reason, CPC Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer (CEO)...... Prof. Priyantha Perera told Ceylon Today.

He said that the complaint was made by the Deputy General (Marketing) Krishantha Wickremasinghe under his guidance.

Wickremasinghe told Ceylon Today that there were repeated efforts and malicious attempts by various persons, yet unidentified, who attempted to create panic among the people and that is why they took the matter to the CID.

The CPC is curious to know the motive behind this SMS message that led to panic around the country and who was responsible.

Asked whether he suspected a political motive behind the issue he said that there were serious possibilities that such was the case.

Meanwhile, Secretary to the Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development Upali Marasinghe assured that there was no imminent crisis at all and the Government had sufficient stocks. He also advised the public not to panic and to refrain from purchasing fuel at black market rates.

The CPC has also set up a hotline-0115-455130 so that the public could make inquiries on the prevailing fuel situation, he added.

He also said that there will be no delays in fuel bowsers leaving the CPC storages.

Meanwhile, the Convener of the Ceylon Petroleum Trade Union Collective Janaka Rajakaruna was quoted in this paper yesterday as saying that the entire SMS fiasco was a hoax perpetrated by unidentified people. He also quipped that there were sufficient stocks of fuel even for the saboteurs to bathe in. There were long queues at petrol sheds in most parts of the country shortly after dusk on Sunday as motorists rushed into panic buying mode following the fake SMS message.

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