The UNP says that illegal sand dredging was taking place in lands belonging to the Wilpattu sanctuary.
UNP parliamentarian Dayasiri Jayasekera has told parliament that persons have illegally dredged 15,000 cubes of sand from the river, Modaragan Aru in the sanctuary.
He has also charged that a government minister had illegally settled some families in land belonging to the sanctuary.
Jayasekera has also show photographs in parliament to prove his allegations.
Agrarian Services and Wildlife Minister S.M. Chandrasena however has denied the accusations saying there was no sand dredging in Modaragan Aru, expect for when the navy had dredged the river bank to prevent a possible flood.
As for the families in sanctuary lands, Chandrasena has said the UNP parliamentarian had shown photographs of low income families taken from elsewhere.