Friday 20 September 2019
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business-standard - 9 days ago

Sting in the tale: naming of Sri Lankan geckos sparks uproar

A team of Sri Lankan scientists caused uproar in parliament and sparked a police probe after they used the names of mythical heroes and national figures to name six newly discovered species of gecko. Two of the new species - discovered on the Indian Ocean island in 2017 and revealed in August - were named for warriors loyal to a first-century BC king, while the others were given the names of 19th century rebels against British rule. But the association with the diminutive reptiles so infuriated Wimal Weerawansa, an ultra-nationalist MP, that he brought the matter up in parliament. Our heroes are not geckos, he thundered to lawmakers. If you touch a gecko s tail, it snaps. Our heroes are not like that. This was followed by a formal complaint by a Buddhist monk to the police Inspector-General, and a preliminary probe was initiated. However, a police spokesman told AFP Wednesday that they could not proceed with the complaint as there was no grounds for a criminal investigation. If ..

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