Colombo: Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has granted a general amnesty to 512 prisoners serving minor sentences to mark the 72nd Independence Day which is celebrated annually on February 4, the President’s Media Division (PMD) said on Monday.

The amnesty has been granted on the recommendation of Nimal Siripala de Silva, Minister of Justice, Human Rights and Legal Reforms, reports Xinhua news agency.

The PMD said those have been serving jail terms after being convicted for minor offences such as theft, breach of trust and drunken driving.

“No one imprisoned on conviction for major offences such as rape, robbery, grave sexual abuse and soliciting bribe is on the list,” it added.

Sri Lanka on Tuesday will celebrate its 72nd Independence Day by holding a grand parade in the capital Colombo to commemorate the island nation’s political independence from the British in 1948.