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Video: Batch of 132 sent home after quarantine

Mar 30 (AD) Another group, quarantined under the supervision of military officers from overseas, is due to return home today. Accordingly, a batch 132 quarantined persons will leave quarantine centers today, said Army Commander Lt Gen Shavendra Silva. Of them, 76 were staying at the Diyatalawa Quarantine Center while the other 56 were in the Poonani Quarantine Center. Among the individuals leaving the centers, 76 had more..

Woman swindled $29 million posing as daughter of Sri Lankan business tycoon

Mar 30 (AD) Australian police claim that a Sydney mother of three swindled multiple people of $29 million by allegedly convincing them she was the daughter of one of the richest men in SL. Australia media reports state that the woman, who cannot legally be named because she is facing multiple prosecutions, allegedly claimed she he was the daughter of businessman Dhammika Perera, whose net worth is about $550 million. Australian Police allege she even went to the trouble of more..

'Efficient system needed to distribute essentials'

Mar 30 (NR) Former Leader of JHU Venerable Omalpe Sobitha Thera has called for the introduction of an efficient programme to distribute essential food items and medicine to homes during curfew. Thera said the current programme in place was not effective. He stressed the responsibility of carrying out this effort lies with state officials. Therefore, Thera said the govt must seek to train rural officials, officials attached to various unions, volunteer groups in rural areas, social activist groups, more..

Over 230 spectators of Roy-Tho big match end quarantine period

Mar 30 (DM) Over 230 people who went into quarantine after attending the big match played between Royal College and St. Thomas' College earlier this month, ended their quarantine period safely yesterday and no one has thus far shown any symptoms of the coronavirus. Sources said that the UL First Officer, who tested positive for the virus which led to several members from the Turf Club Tent into isolation, has also fully recovered more..

Sri Lanka relaxes capital buffer deadlines, bad loan rules on Coronavirus crisis

Mar 30 (EN) Central Bank said it relaxing loan loss provisions, capital enhancement deadlines and would also allow banks to draw down their capital conservation buffers amid the economic shock from Coronavirus and curfews. Monetary Board of the Central Bank has decided to introduce several extraordinary regulatory measures to provide flexibility to Licensed Commercial Banks and Licensed Specialised Banks to provide some relief to businesses and individuals affected by more..

Allowance for Samurdhi families

Mar 30 (DN) Special Presidential Task Force for Essential Services which met under the leadership of President and PM have approved an allowance for Samurdhi recipients as well as those with special needs. Accordingly the task force has also approved the payment of an annual Festival Advance to public servants, an interim payment of Rs. 5,000 each to the 2.3 million Samurdhi families and to pay the allowance for persons with disabilities to those who are registered but yet to receive allowance. more..

Video: 120 confirmed cases of COVID-19

Mar 30 (AD) Three more patients have tested positive for Coronavirus bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the country to 120, as of 8 a.m. today. Five new patients had been identified within the past 24 hours, four from Puttalam District and the other from Kalutara District. Ministry of Health stated that 117 patients suspected of contracting the virus are currently under observation at several hospitals across SL. more..

Cyber trauma is very real

Mar 30 (DM) Most of us are now forced to work from home. This is nothing new, at least to some of us, who are used to working from anywhere at any time. But the sudden COVID-19 outbreak enforced work from home regime should make us pay attention to the real dangers posed of cyber trauma. During the last fortnight, I have written, spoken and posted heavily on cyber trauma and its impact on journalism and journalists. Most of it is applicable to general online usage as well. more..

COVID-19, vulnerability and false certainties

Mar 30 (DM) On March 3, 2020, coronavirus or COVID-19 made its first appearance in Sri Lanka when a foreign national tested coronavirus positive. However, despite the country’s state of unpreparedness to face what was to become a world-wide pandemic, local doctors were able to save the patient’s life and she was able to leave the country. Sadly, a few of the people whom she had interacted with, were soon found to be coronavirus positive. Our people almost and more..

Sri Lanka threatened by isolated Coronavirus cases, Covid-19 count 117

Mar 30 (EN) Isolated cases of Coronavirus cases are still turning up from various locations posing a hidden threat, and the public should be careful to maintain social distance when curfew is lifted in some areas on Monday, Army Chief Shavendra Silva said. “You can see that from time to time, infected persons are turning up from here and there,” General Silva said in a recorded video address to media. “There is a certain threat. more..

Unemployed graduate trainees to be assigned to MOH offices for coronavirus...

Mar 30 (AD) Considering the prevailing situation, training period of trainee graduates who have reported to Divisional Secretariats has been delayed until May, Ministry of Public Admin, Home Affairs, PCs and LG has announced. However, taking into account the request of the Ministry of Health and Indigenous Medicine, a decision has been taken to temporary attach these trainee graduates to Medical Officer of Health (MOH) offices for assisting the process of controlling coronavirus disease. more..

Daily wage earners say just surviving temporarily

Mar 30 (Island) The novel coronavirus is becoming not only a raging pandemic in Sri Lanka which demands systematic containment and eradication but is also a test that would measure problem solving, intelligence and creativity especially in resolving the untold miseries faced by the economically vulnerable sections of people across the country. The Island Financial Review yesterday spoke to several daily wage earners over the phone to find out the ground situation. more..

HRCSL Chief intervenes on behalf of prisoners

Mar 30 (Island) Human Rights Commissioner Dr. Deepika Udagama has requested Prisons Commissioner Jayasiri Tennakoon to take measures for the protection of prisoners. Dr. Udagama has written to Tennakoon after discussing with him over the phone how to safeguard the health of prisoners during the current health epidemic. The following letter has been sent to the Chief Justice, Attorney-General and acting IGP as well as more..

Navy adds two more quarantine centres

Mar 30 (SLN) In view of the looming threat of COVID-19 pandemic, SL Navy shouldering the national responsibility has swiftly set up 2 quarantine centres at the naval establishment SLNS Buwaneka in Mulankavil, Mannar and Oluvil harbour premises on 28th March, for persons suspected of COVID-19 infection. To augment the coordinated govt efforts to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus in the country, four buildings of SLNS Buwaneka were arranged with quarantine facilities, more..

Champika breaks curfew laws

Mar 30 (CT) Police have informed the Kaduwela Magistrate's Court regarding former Minister Champika Ranawaka who had held a meeting at his residence on 28 March, at a time when the Police curfew had been imposed and meetings were prohibited. As soon as the information about the said meeting at Champika's residence in Rajamalwatha Road, Battaramulla, was reported, a team of Police officers of the Thalangama Police Station and a Public Health Inspector went to Ranawaka's more..

How Athletes are coping with present Curfew

Mar 30 (CT) Covid 19 pandemic has forced National Athletes to stick to their homes for an indefinite period, which they aren't used to or haven't done so in the past and they hardly want to miss two days of practice on the trot. SL has a couple of athletes who are stuck in other countries due to the pandemic. Sprinter Yupun Abeykoon is stuck in Italy where 69,176 cases and 6,820 deaths have been reported, while Marathoner Hiruni Wijayarathne more..

SLT now offers free unlimited data

Mar 30 (Island) As the national telecommunications provider, Sri Lanka Telecom, recognizing its responsibility in a time when Sri Lanka is affected by the coronavirus pandemic, has come up with a range of free unlimited data offers with the aim of making it possible for you to stay connected with your loved ones. SLT now offers free unlimited data for Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, IMO and Telegram making it easier for you to stay closer to your friends, family & relatives in this time of need, more..

CEB Engineers support Coronavirus hospitals

Mar 30 (EN) Engineers of CEB have provided medical equipment to hospitals designated to treat Coronavirus patients and are collecting funds to provide supplies to hospitals. The CEBEU had handed over 1.1 million rupees medical supplies include beds for ICUs to Panadura Hospital. The union is also helping to fund the conversion of a ward in Nagoda Hospital in Kaluthara. CEBEU said it has now launched a collection to by 1,000 PPE kits for the Army Hospital. more..

22 civil society organisations criticise Presidential pardon

Mar 30 (FT) A number of 22 civil society organisations issued a collective statement contending that the Presidential pardon extended to convicted Army officer after his sentence was affirmed by a five-judge Bench of the Supreme Court was a lethal blow to the rule of law. On 26 March, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa granted a Presidential pardon and released convicted death row prisoner former Army Staff Sergeant Sunil Rathnayake. more..

Fans in for a treat as ICC opens its archives

Mar 30 (ICC) International Cricket Council (ICC) has opened its comprehensive archive of match footage and programming to its broadcast partners, giving fans throughout the world the opportunity to relive some of the greatest cricketing moments of the last 45 years as they stay at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Move will enable fans around the world to watch memorable cricket matches, highlights and ICC films at a time live sport programming stands disrupted due to Corona Virus. more..

Editorial: Lockdown blues

Mar 30 (Island) The first Covid-19 death has been reported, and new cases continue to be detected in SL. The ongoing stringent measures to prevent the spread of the disease must continue if a catastrophic situation is to be averted. Even the developed countries are struggling to manage the Covid-19 crisis. The New York Times reported, on Friday, that Covid-19 patients had to share ventilators in some New York hospitals. What we are faced with is an unprecedented health emergency, more..

‘My (Olympic) dreams are not shattered, they are simply delayed’

Mar 30 (ST) Like most athletes around the world, SL’s US-based star Hiruni Wijayaratne has welcomed the decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics by one year because of the coronavirus pandemic. She joined 23-time Olympic gold medallist Michael Phelps who noted his support for the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday night. “I was shocked that they hadn’t cancelled before this,” Phelps told NBC. more..

Mahanama and Vaas appeal to help daily wage earners

Mar 30 (Island) Former Sri Lanka captain Roshan Mahanama and former fast bowling great Chaminda Vaas have appealed to the cricket lovers to come forward to help the daily wage earner who have lost their livelihood due to the ongoing lock-down. The initiative to help the daily wage earners was started by Dr. Krishan Thalagahage and team. Vaas and Mahanama urge the public to donate essentials such as rice, noodles, dhal, salmon, dry fish, sprats, sugar, chilies, curry powder and biscuits. more..

Watch your eating habits, Sri Lanka’s cricketers told

Mar 30 (Island) Sri Lanka Cricket has issued a directive to all contracted players to watch their eating habits. The members of the national cricket teams are on strict diets constantly monitored by the trainers but now that the players are isolated due to the island-wide curfew, there are fears that the players might end up putting on additional weight. With no training whatsoever taking place, the players are restricted to indoor training within their houses. more..

No salary cuts for SriLankan Airlines’ staff despite flight restrictions

Mar 30 (TM) Despite airlines around the world temporarily reducing salaries of employees to mitigate losses, national carrier SriLankan Airlines has no plans to resort to any pay cuts. Currently, all passenger flights into Sri Lanka have been postponed indefinitely with effect from 17 March, with only departure flights being operational since last Sunday (22), in a measure adopted to contain the spread of Covid-19 within SL. more..

What COVID-19 exposed!

Mar 30 (Island) Leaving aside the idiocy and the lack of social responsibility displayed by some of our brethren, returning to the safety of the Motherland escaping the virulence of a tiny virus devastating Europe, many an interesting fact has emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic. The term pandemic itself causes jitters as most assume that it implies severity, whereas what it actually means is the geographical distribution: That it is prevalent in many continents of the world, simultaneously. more..

A people like no other

Mar 30 (TM) Despite its dark side, Covid-19 has also been somewhat of a blessing in disguise for the majority of us Sri Lankans who, all this time, have steadfastly refused to obey basic public sanitation protocols. Now, Covid-19 has succeeded in doing what no politician or govt could do, that is, to get people to wash their hands at regular intervals and await their turn to be served. The deadly pandemic which has killed thousands across the globe is yet to claim a life in Sri Lanka, more..

Travel Girl: Embilipitiya

Politics apart; uniting for a cause

Mar 30 (TM) The continuous calls by many opposition political parties on the Govt to convene an all-party meeting to discuss the global Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on Sri Lanka were finally answered by PM Mahinda Rajapaksa last week by holding an all-party meeting to discuss the way forward. Rajapaksa has convened the meeting with party leaders at Temple Trees on Tuesday (24). With Parliament dissolved and the general election postponed indefinitely, the all-party meeting more..

Nestlé donates Rs. 15 mn products to front-line workers battling COVID-19

Mar 30 (DN) SrL workers at the frontline of battling the COVID-19 outbreak received close to half a million serves of food and beverage products from Nestlé, worth Rs. 15 million. The products were donated to the National Operations Center for Prevention of COVID-19 for distribution to medical workers, armed forces and others, in support of the critical work they do. “Now more than ever is the time to uphold our strong values as a company; to continue making a meaningful contribution more..

Coronavirus: Political physicians’ prescriptions put patients in peril

Mar 30 (ST) For many decades, Sri Lankans have displayed their ingenuity at historic moments even if what they said or did bordered on insanity. Some 65 years ago, an ayurvedic physician cum astrologer, came out with a recipe for a cocktail that would make dark women turn white. This was when the sun, moon and the earth aligned itself during a total eclipse that brought darkness during daytime. When sunlight arrived later, more..

Death in Angoda

Mar 30 (CT) I heard of the death in Angoda from two busybody acquaintances late Saturday night. The tenor of one was gossipy. The other was condemnatory of all who chose to live and work beyond our shores but decided to return when pestilence threatened them. Death at our doorstep should have diminished us. That it sparked excitement appalled me. The French philosopher novelist Albert Camus wrote his famous novel La peste- The Plague precisely to explain how more..

Democracy in crisis: Avoiding dictatorship

Mar 30 (CT) Prez on 2 March, 2020 by Gazette Extraordinary No. 2165/8legitimately dissolved Parliament from midnight and fixed 25 April, 2020 as the date for the General Election. While the proclamation was legal, it was poorly thought out because it was made well after the Covid-19 outbreak had begun. Passengers at many int'l airports like Kuwait were being tested for fever before letting them enter, but our govt seemed hell-bent on holding elections, even inviting more..

Colombo under curfew: Candid captures of a desolate city

Mar 30 (Roar) Colombo is usually teeming with activity as people pour into the city for work or school, causing bottlenecks and gridlocks during peak hours. But all of that has now changed as a result of the curfew imposed on the island to contain COVID-19. While it is not uncommon to see bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Galle Road that runs through Colombo this picture from Bambalapitiya, shows how empty the road is more..

Around the world in eighty days, the virus that knows no borders

Mar 30 (ST) Today it is heartening to note China beating its breasts and exclaiming proudly Wuhan has finally laid to rest the deadly virus it once spawned, bred and spread to the rest of the world. But is it too early to open the bubbly? Too early to give Wuhan a clean bill of health? The bat borne virus, transmissible from human to human, may have been temporarily slain, but has a stake been driven through its heart to close the lid permanently on its Chinese sojourn? more..

On political sins committed during the covid-19 panic

Mar 30 (ST) A global health pandemic is not the time for political upmanship. It is also the worst time to engage in fragrant violations of justice in the exploitative belief that the uproar therein would be muted when the citizenry is in survivalist mode. At any point, this would be abhorrent but to do so during a pandemic speaks to a special kind of contempt towards the Rule of Law. On both these counts, this Presidency and this Govt needs to be held to account by the nation even as more..