Finance Minister Michael Baker today, June 30, announced he will introduce the 2006-07 budget in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly on Tuesday, July 4, beginning at 1 p.m. “This will be our fifth consecutive balanced budget,” said Mr. Baker. “We will continue to build a strong, competitive province with a diverse economy, and remain on course with our debt-management plan.” The minister said that, due to good fiscal management and an improved economy, the province is now in a position to make strategic investments to make life better for Nova Scotians. The main budget documents will be the same as those tabled on May 9, 2006. A new document has been prepared to indicate minor changes to budget schedules. The minister will deliver an update to his budget address of May 9.
The Police say investigations have linked the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) to recent hate crimes in the country.The Police have arrested four people including a Buddhist monk and a police officer accused of taking part in an attack on a mosque, as part of a crackdown on violence against the minority Muslim population, the Reuters news agency reported. More than 20 attacks on Muslims, including arson at Muslim-owned businesses and petrol-bomb attacks on mosques, have been recorded since April 17.Jayakody said police had arrested eleven people for hate speech offences this month, including a Muslim for a Facebook post against Buddhism and a Tamil accused of attacking a mosque. “The police arrested four people including a Buddhist monk and a serving police constable after watching the CCTV footage of an attack on a mosque,” police spokesman Priyantha Jayakody told reporters, referring to an attack on a property in Panadura. “This is a major breakthrough in the investigations, these two people are prominent members of the Bodu Bala Sena organisation,” he added, saying they were arrested with a sword, a hockey stick and equipment used to make petrol bombs.President Maithripala Sirisena’s government has come under fire from opposition groups and diplomats for not doing enough to crack down on hardline Buddhist groups and protect Muslims. Police said on Sunday the four were members of the BBS or Buddhist Power Force organisation, which Muslim groups have blamed for a string of recent attacks on businesses and mosques. BBS has denied any involvement.