Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka)

PHIS CLAIM THEY NEVER SU­PER­VISED BRANDIX RE­TURNEES FROM IN­DIA

- BY NIR­MALA KANNANGARA

Let them show our Union the de­tails where they un­der­went the manda­tory quar­an­tine Name re­spec­tive PHIS, who su­per­vised them dur­ing the 14 day self-quar­an­tine

Fa­cil­ity in Min­uwan­goda does not use any fab­ric from In­dia

Sri­lankan says names of pas­sen­gers who trav­elled with them are con­fi­den­tial

From Vishaka­p­at­tam (UL1159) - 60 per­sons to Mat­tala char­tered by Brandix on 22nd Sept.

Three flights were on 25th June with 168 pas­sen­gers, 8th Au­gust with 125, and 22nd Sept. with 48

The Pub­lic Health In­spec­tors Union of Sri Lanka claims that none of their mem­bers ever su­per­vised any of those who were brought down from In­dia in repa­tri­a­tion flights char­tered by Brandixap­parel Ltd.who claim to have sub­jected all re­turnees to a 14 day self-quar­an­tine.

Sec­re­tary, pub­lic Health In­spec­tors Union (PHIU), M. Bala­sooriya dis­miss­ing the con­tents of the me­dia re­leases is­sued by Brandixap­parel Ltd and the Task Force of the Na­tional Op­er­a­tional Cen­tre for Preven­tion of COVID-19 Out­break, said that, had any one of those who were brought to Sri Lanka from Visakha­p­at­nam, in­dia un­der­gone the 14 day manda­tory quar­an­tine at a gov­ern­ment reg­u­lated quar­an­tine cen­ter, they would have been handed over to them the (PHIS) to su­per­vise the re­main­ing 14 day self­quar­an­tine pe­riod

“The names of pas­sen­gers who trav­elled with us is con­fi­den­tial in­for­ma­tion and dis­clo­sure of that in­for­ma­tion vi­o­lates our con­fi­den­tial­ity obli­ga­tions to­wards the pas­sen­gers. We are un­able to share any pas­sen­ger man­i­fest of a flight con­tain­ing the names of in­di­vid­u­als with a third party un­less there is a Court or­der or di­rec­tive from our Reg­u­la­tory Author­ity di­rect­ing us to pro­vide any spe­cific in­for­ma­tion to the Court or such Author­ity. We ap­pre­ci­ate your un­der­stand­ing and we con­sider this mat­ter as now closed,”

Head of Me­dia, Sri Lankan Air­lines,

Deepal Per­era

Brandix claims all pas­sen­gers were quar­an­tined at the Blue Wa­ter Ho­tel Wad­duwa, Sher­a­ton Ho­tel Kos­goda and Long Beach Ho­tel Kog­gala

A senior of­fi­cial who is un­der­go­ing quar­an­tine at a gov­ern­ment cen­tre con­firmed that there are In­dian work­ers at the Min­uwan­goda fac­tory

“Al­though those who are re­spon­si­ble are now claim­ing that the pas­sen­gers who were brought down from In­dia un­der­went the reg­u­lated 28 day quar­an­tine, let them show our Union the de­tails where they un­der­went the manda­tory quar­an­tine and who the re­spec­tive PHIS were, who su­per­vised them dur­ing the 14 day self-quar­an­tine,” Bala­sooriya al­leged.

Mean­while, when Daily Mir­ror con­tacted Rasika, the Load Con­troller at the Mat­tala Air­port to ob­tain de­tails of the load sheet in which ar­rival de­tails of pas­sen­gers aboard UL 1159 which landed at Mat­tala Air­port on Septem­ber 22, at 14.05 hrs, this news­pa­per

was asked to con­tact the Sta­tion Man­ager Sri Lankan Air­lines Ud­dika Lak­sh­man.the lat­ter too re­fused to di­vulge any de­tails and wanted us to con­tact the Head of Me­dia, sri Lankan Air­lines, Deepal Per­era.

Per­era re­quested this news­pa­per to send him an of­fi­cial re­quest to which an e-mail was sent. how­ever, with­out pro­vid­ing the de­tails sought –the names and their na­tion­al­ity of each pas­sen­ger, per­era replied as fol­lows, “the names of pas­sen­gers who trav­elled with us is con­fi­den­tial in­for­ma­tion and dis­clo­sure of that in­for­ma­tion vi­o­lates our con­fi­den­tial­ity obli­ga­tions to­wards the pas­sen­gers.we are un­able to share any pas­sen­ger man­i­fest of a flight con­tain­ing the names of in­di­vid­u­als with a third party un­less there is a Court or­der or di­rec­tive from our Reg­u­la­tory-author­ity di­rect­ing us to pro­vide any spe­cific in­for­ma­tion to the Court or such Author­ity.we ap­pre­ci­ate your un­der­stand­ing and we con­sider this mat­ter as now closed, ”deepal.

In or­der to ob­tain the ex­act de­tails of the pas­sen­gers, as Sri Lankan Air­lines re­fused to pro­vide, this news­pa­per re­quested the nec­es­sary de­tails from the air­line un­der the Right to In­for­ma­tion Act. Al­though Brandix claims that they have not em­ployed any for­eigner at their Min­uwan­goda fac­tory, a senior of­fi­cial who wished to re­main anony­mous who is un­der­go­ing manda­tory quar­an­tine at a gov­ern­ment reg­u­lated quar­an­tine cen­ter con­firmed to this news­pa­per that there are In­dian work­ers at­tached to the Min­uwan­goda fac­tory. “If the com­pany de­nies this claim, i am chal­leng­ing the man­age­ment to show all de­tails of pay­ments that were made to the em­ploy­ees, ”the sources said. When asked whether fab­ric ma­te­ri­als were brought to the fac­tory from In­dia re­cently, she added that there are im­ported stocks but said not aware whether they were brought down re­cently. “i can­not make any com­ment on that as I am not sure when they were brought to the fac­tory, ”the sources claimed.

When we con­tacted, Iman­thi Per­era, Head of Cor­po­rate Com­mu­ni­ca­tion, Brandix Ap­parel Ltd, to find out as to when the three char­ter flights landed in Sri Lanka to­gether with the flight de­tail and how many pas­sen­gers were brought down from In­dia, whether there weren’t any for­eign­ers amongst the repa­tri­ated pas­sen­gers, where they un­der­went the manda­tory quar­an­tine and whether any fab­ric ma­te­rial was brought down from In­dia, Ms. per­era wanted this news­pa­per to send her an of­fi­cial re­quest.

Re­spond­ing to the queries, ms. per­era stated that the three flights char­tered by Brandix Ap­parel had got down 341 pas­sen­gers. Al­though she states that only 48 pas­sen­gers were brought on UL 1159 on Septem­ber 22,this news­pa­per is in pos­ses­sion of an e-mail from the Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs which claims that there were 60 pas­sen­gers on board.

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