20 January 2019
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Sirasa Media Network’s extortionist media practices - 1

PORT CITYThe China Port City project is considered the biggest foreign direct investment in the recent history of Sri Lanka. The investor is China Porty City Development Company. To be built on a 268 acre reclaimed land near Galle Face
Green, the estimated cost of the project is 4.6 billion US dollars. The project is subjected to a 99 year lease. Previously, the project was planned to be fully owned by China, but the new government rewrote the agreement to make it 40 per cent China owned and 60 pc Sri Lanka owned. The first contract was signed by the then president Mahinda Rajapaksa and the prime minister of China. It was started without any feasibility study or environmental impact assessment, and the project has had an adverse impact on the movement of ships in Colombo port due to a change in the breaking of the waves.
Environmentalists have been agitating against this adverse impact on environment, and they were ably supported by the mainstream media, websites and the bloggers. Foremost among them was Killy Maharaja’s Sirasa Media Network. In a big make believe, its channels continued to attack the project throughout the day. They installed two CCTV like cameras directed at the project from Galle Face Green and using the footage, staged a big campaign against it. According to Sirasa, the port city project is the worst project ever in Sri Lanka.
In order to escape this media attack and to promote the project, China Porty City Development gave a contract to Phoenix – Ogilvy PR company. Hearing that it was a multi million dollar contract, Killy Maharaja immediately sent a team to meet with China Porty City Development’s CEO Dr. Lin. The Sirasa team told Dr. Lin that they could stop all propaganda against the project through the Sirasa network and that promoting the project could be done through them. After several rounds of talks, China Port City Development’s Dr. Lin cancelled the contract with Phoenix – Ogilvy PR and agreed to the Sirasa campaign. Killy Maharaja demanded 25 million US dollars for the contract. For the first phase, the Chinese company has given three milllion US dollars, or nearly Rs. 400 million, and the Foreign Currency Investigation Bureau of the Central Bank confirmed the money had gone to Capital Maharaja, the parent company of Sirasa Network.
Receiving the money, Killy Maharaja’s Sirasa has begun whitewashing the China Port City project, which it has named ‘Ranbima project’. Sirasa is now visiting the villages and speaking about a peace memorial being built and promoting it through its channels. According to Sirasa, this memorial is higher than Nelum Kuluna. Forgetting the adverse impact of the project for three million US dollars, Sirasa Media Network is now promoting the ‘Ranbima Project.’
Await details of how Sirasa extorted money from Vesak pandals…..

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