The Secretary to the Ministry of Public Administration, J.J. Ratnasiri and the Parliament Select Committee (PSC) on the Easter Sunday attacks, today clashed on the dress code circular issued by him.
The PSC questioned the Secretary as to who gave him the authority to issue the circular and if he has withdrawn it.
The circular states that male officials during their work hours, when entering respective offices, should be clad in trousers and shirt or the national attire, while female officials are required to be clad in either a saree or a Kandyan saree.
It also states that officers who currently receive uniforms or vouchers for uniforms must be dressed appropriately as well.
Ratnasiri said that the circular was issued following the Easter Sunday attacks after discussions held with several officials as well as the Minister in charge.
However the PSC noted that the Minister in charge had said he was not aware of the circular being issued.
Ratnasiri however insisted that the circular had the approval of the Minister.
The PSC also informed the Secretary that some state employees, especially Muslim women, had filed a complaint with the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka over the circular.
Ratnasiri however said that the concerns should first have been raised with the department heads or the Ministry and not the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka. The PSC however objected to the stand taken by the Secretary.
The PSC also asked him if the circular has been suspended as instructions to that effect had been issued by the Prime Minister’s Office.
Ratnasiri however said that the circular has not been suspended but will only be amended. (Colombo Gazette)