Former Lankan cricket captain, minister Ranatunga's guards kill 1..Lankan crisis turns violent..India monitoring

Colombo, Oct 28: The political crises in Sri Lanka took an ugly turn on Sunday when bodyguards of Petroleum Minister Arjuna Ranatunga, a loyalist of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, fired live rounds at the supporters of the new premier Mahinda Rajapaksa, leaving one person dead.One person succumbed to his injuries and two others were hospitalised in the shooting incident and a security personnel was arrested at the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) premises in Dematagoda following a tense situation on Sunday, police said.The incident took place when the cricketer-turned-politician visited the CPC office, with several Ceylon Petroleum Corporation workers objecting to his presence at the office.When Ranatunga entered the building the supporters of the new prime minister Rajapaksa took exception to him visiting the office and shouted slogans.When they were not allowed to move out, shots were fired which injured three persons. Unconfirmed reports said that two of Ranatunga's security personnel have been arrested.Ranatunga is a supporter of Wickremesinghe who was sacked by Sirisena. Wickremesinghe holds his sacking was illegal and unconstitutional.Sri Lanka is facing a political crisis after President Sirisena sacked prime minister Wickremesinghe on Friday, and appointed former strongman Rajapaksa as the new prime minister.A new caretaker government is expected to be sworn in on Monday.Sirisena also suspended parliament till November 16 after Wickremesinghe sought an emergency session to prove his majority. His office also announced that with Wickremesinghe's sacking the Cabinet stands dissolved.Meanwhile, India is closely following the political developments in Sri Lanka where President Maithripala Sirisena appointed his predecessor Mahinda Rajapaksa as Prime Minister after ousting Ranil Wickremesinghe from the post, the External Affairs Ministry said on Sunday."India is closely following the recent political developments in Sri Lanka," Ministry spokesman Raveeh Kumar said in response to queries from the media."As a democracy and a close friendly neighbour, we hope that democratic values and the constitutional process will be respected," Kumar said."We will continue to extend our developmental assistance to the friendly people of Sri Lanka."Rajapaksa was appointed as the nation's new Prime Minister by Sirisena on Friday night, shocking "ousted" leader Wickremesinghe and his United National Party (UNP).The former President has secured a majority in the island's 225-member Parliament and will continue to retain his job despite protests from the UNP, his party Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) said in Colombo on Saturday.Agencies