Act Nos,
1 of 1928
5 of 1929
Act Nos,
39 of 1950
40 of 1951
[2nd September
, 1951
Short title.

1. This Ordinance may be cited as the Holidays Ordinance.

Bank holidays.

2. After the commencement of this Ordinance, the several days specified in the First Schedule (in this Ordinance referred to as ” bank holidays”) shall be kept as close holidays in all banks in Ceylon.

As to payments on bank holidays.


(1) No person shall be compellable to make any payment or to do any act upon a bank holiday which he would not be compelled to do or make on Sunday ; and the obligation to make such payment and do such act shall apply to the day next following the bank holiday which is not itself a Sunday or a bank holiday ; and the making of such payment and doing such act on such following day shall be equivalent to payment of the money or performance of the act on the holiday.

(2) Nothing in this section shall affect the law for the time being in force relating to bills of exchange or promissory notes, nor shall anything in this section apply to any payment or act to be made or done in court or public office on a bank holiday which is not a public holiday.

Certain days to be public holidays.

4. The several days mentioned in the Second Schedule (in this Ordinance referred to as ” public holidays “) shall, in addition to Sundays, be dies non, and shall be kept (except as hereinafter provided) as holidays in Ceylon.



(1) The Minister, with the concurrence of the Minister charged with the administration of the functions of the office or department concerned,1 may, from time to time, make regulations, to be published in the Gazette excluding in whole or in part, from the operation of this Ordinance, any public office or any department thereof, and thereupon all acts and things relating to such public office or department thereof may be done and performed on any public holiday, notwithstanding the provisions of this Ordinance.

(2) All such regulations shall, as soon as conveniently may be, be laid before the Senate and the House of Representatives,[1] and may, at any of the next following three meetings, be rescinded by resolution of the Senate or the House of Representatives, [1] but without prejudice to anything already done thereunder, and if not so rescinded shall be deemed to be valid.

Holidays falling on Sunday.

6. If any bank holiday or public holiday shall fall on a Sunday, the following Monday shall be a bank holiday or public holiday, as the case may be : Provided that the Minister [1] may, if he thinks fit, by notice in the Gazette, order that any other day shall be a bank holiday or public holiday, as the case may be, instead of the Monday.

Power to appoint special holiday.

7. The Minister [1] may, from time to time, by notice in the Gazette, appoint any day to be a bank holiday or public holiday, in addition to or in substitution for any of the days specified in the Schedules hereto.


Chapter 177, Volume No. 6, Page No.730.