Today is the 3rd of August 2007. I finally and after much effort was able to get a permit for me and my man friday Amila to drive my vehicle into Colombo, and into some areas that come within the High Scurity Zone. This is valid between 8am and 8pm and to that extent, when I visit Green Path where many of my relatives live, I have to leave by 8pm.
I noted below in a blog that my Tata cab a single cab, flatbed vehicle, is considered a truck under the laws here and therefore requires a permit to enter certain areas as there is a possibility that such vehicles can carry explosives. I have also referred to below the absurdity of this proposition, when many closed large SUV with tinted windows, do not require such permission and are more likely to carry unauthorized goods and unauthorizd people.
It is sad thatin the interests of security due calculation is not made of the likelihood of occurences and try to tighten the rules governing the most likely threats than make blanket rules that cause inconvenience to honest hardworking people while allowing the guilty and dubious through.
I have noticed that the police are less likely to stop a vehicle with tinted windows, because they are not sure who is in it, and are concerned that their jobs are more in danger if they stop a high official who will complain, and have him transferred from sentry duty to active duty in the north.
All these matters referred to as well as the ability of convoys of vehicles ostensibly of high officials with escort cars and other non attached cars go through with lights blazing taking advantage of the fast passage allowed, to pass through undetected and searched adds a new meaning to security.
I do not for a moment belittle the task that the security forces have of protecting Colombo from the threats. However I believe they have a better ability to protect from attack if the intelligence side of this is acted on more than the checkpoint side of this.
I sadly feel, that people like me are victims, as I do not posses any other vehicle other than my cab, and I was invited to come to the Swimming Club almost opposite Temple Trees this evening, but had to regretfully decline, citing the inability to bring my vehicle, and I was not in a mind to engage a three wheeler, having parked my car elsewhere, which in itself could give rise to a scare!!!
I dont mind paying this price as long as their is sacrifice on all sides, and not just applied to the less fortunate.