A 10-day state of Emergency was declared in Sri Lanka by President Maithripala Sirisena on Tuesday.
The Emergency was declared after communal clashes erupted in Kandy district.
The clashes erupted between Buddhists and Muslims, reported Reuters.
Minister of National Dialogue Mano Ganeshan told Xinhua news agency that the decision had been taken following a special cabinet meeting held on Tuesday morning.
The government strongly condemned the violence and vowed to take stern action against the perpetrators. Clashes first erupted in the Digana area on Sunday night after a 41-year-old man succumbed to injuries at a hospital after being attacked by a group of people over an incident involving two vehicles on February 22.
Ganeshan said the state of Emergency would give Sirisena the power to deploy the armed forces across the country.
Earlier on Tuesday, the police reimposed curfew in some parts after mobs took to the streets on Monday night burning houses and businesses in the latest spate of racial violence to hit the island country.
The curfew was imposed on Monday evening and lifted on Tuesday morning, but was re-imposed due to a threat of violence erupting again.
The officer said security was heightened while schools and businesses remained closed.
A police official said 24 people had been arrested over the killing so far. Out of the 24, 10 were directly involved in the killing.
The Sri Lankan government, in a statement, strongly condemned the violence and warned strict action against the perpetrators.
With IANS inputs