A model Coconut Park is to be opened adjoining to Pasikudah Bay with the aim of developing tourism.
The Ministry of Coconut Development and Janatha Estate Development and Coconut Development Board has chosen Pasikuda for the project taking into consideration the tourists that visit Pasikuda in thousands. The park is being constructed in an area of over 238 acres. Another 25 acres adjoining this estate will be developed as a tourist zone.
Around 1.5 million people have been visiting the Divi Neguma Avurudu fairs, now being held in 324 main towns throughout the country and this amount is expected to reach three million today being the last day.
“We are very happy to be in this beautiful country with beautiful sunshine, fresh air and the 12 members of our delegation who are engaged in various businesses are all Lions, who are good hearted people. We wish to do good things in Sri Lanka and to develop co-operation between Sri Lanka and China. Currently our members are using their excess resources to help the people of China but we will extend this to other friendly countries such as Sri Lanka" said Liu Cheng Xi, head of the business delegation who in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited the historic Kataragama Sacred City on Thursday. The President first visited the historic Kirivehera and received blessings after participating in religious observances. President Rajapaksa also joined in the Lakhanda Maha Adishtana Ashirvada Pooja at the Kirivehera Sacred Site. He joined in the Pinkama by lighting oil lamps.
The Traditional Industries and Small Enterprises that saw a complete destruction during the period of the armed conflict were now on fast track towards development, said Douglas Devananda, Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development at a recently held ceremony at Kilinochchi district Secretariat to mark the distribution of industrial implements to those who underwent training, conducted by "Divi Neguma" programme.
Three armed LTTE suspects who attempted to escape were killed in a confrontation with the armed forces.
Top three LTTE suspects Sundaralingam Kajeepan @ Thevihan, and Selvanayagam Kajeepan @ Gobi and the third yet to be identified, but is believed to be that of Navaratnam Navaneethan @ Appan.have been confirmed dead in this confrontation between the Army and the LTTE suspects in the early hours of today (11) in the jungle off Padaviya.
According to the Press Release issued by the Military Spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya an attempt for resurgence of terrorism in Sri Lanka surfaced in general area Pallai in the Jaffna Peninsula calling for launching another phase of the LTTE struggle for a separate state. The information on several key suspects who were leading the campaign for resurgence of the LTTE also surfaced. Investigators made several arrests that led to recovery of arms, ammunitions, explosives and other material that were in their possession.
It was also revealed that this local group was functioning under the instructions of LTTE leaders Nediyawan and Vinayagam who are based in Europe. They were preparing the ground for another armed struggle. Immediate objectives of the local group included the recovery or war like material dumped by the LTTE during retreat, re-establishment of LTTE intelligence network, regrouping of the potential cadre including those rehabilitated, collecting information on potential targets including in other provinces.
Investigations revealed that the funds for these activities that came from Europe were being transferred using Hawala system which is an illegal system for money transfer widely used in the subcontinent. It was also revealed that many safe houses, vehicles and other resources required for resurgence of the LTTE had been procured by them using this money.
Three local leaders in the attempted resurgence of the LTTE were identified as Sundaralingam Kajeepan @ Thevihan (who was involved in aerial attacks on Anuradhapura Air Base and Kollonnawa Petroleum Storage in year 2007), Selvanayagam Kajeepan @ Gobi, Navarathnam Navaneethan @ Appan. Investigators trailing these local leaders made several arrests of second and third tier cadre. In one attempt on 13 March 2014 one of the suspected leaders known as Gobi escaped after shooting a police officer.
Volume of information that came pouring from the peace loving local public who did not approve of any attempt of resurgence of the LTTE helped investigations in a large measure. The general area where the three leaders, i.e Thevihan, Gobi and Appan were hiding was identified. On 10 April 2014 troops in a search operation in the jungle area off Padaviya recovered four back-packs containing rations, medicine, cloths, etc... believed to be used by the suspects.
The identified area was surrounded. In the early hours of 11 April 2014 three armed suspects who attempted to escape the area confronted the troops in the cordon. All three were killed and two of the dead were later identified as Sundaralingam Kajeepan @ Thevihan, and Selvanayagam Kajeepan @ Gobi. The third is yet to be identified, but is believed to be that of Navaratnam Navaneethan @ Appan.
SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka now facilitates Umrah pilgrims to Jeddah, with its latest route via Mattala. For the first time in history, SriLankan passengers will now have the opportunity to start their journey from the country’s second international airport, Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport (MRIA). Accordingly, the first batch consisting 30 Umrah pilgrims, departed from Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport, on Thursday.
SriLankan Airlines, Manager Sales (Agency/Passenger) Fawzan Fareid said, “SriLankan as the national carrier has always been attentive to the pulse of the people. Our mission lies far beyond transferring people from one point to another. It is about taking them to where they desire to be. This initiative came into being as a result of our effort to provide a smooth and hassle free journey to all the pilgrims heading for the Holy Land. This is all about recognising and saluting their devotion."
The team leader of the group Mohammad Iqbal Marikkar voicing his thoughts on the sacred journey with SriLankan said, “SriLankan’s operations to Jeddah from Mattala comes as a great relief for the devotees in the Southern and Eastern parts of the country, who will otherwise, have to, make a longer journey to the capital city in order to board a flight. With the ever-so supportive staff and smooth completion of formalities, I am hopeful that this is going to be hassle-free journey from the beginning to the end."
SriLankan operates a weekly flight leaving Hambantota to Jeddah every Thursday at 1400 hrs local time. The national carrier, with its strong presence in the Middle Eastern region, currently operates a total of five flights a week to Jeddah.
A coordinated and comprehensive approach to provide psycho-social support and counseling for conflict-affected persons in the North and East will soon be in operation.
At a meeting held on Wednesday (9) with stakeholder ministries, Secretary to the President and Chairman of the Committee Monitoring LLRC Recommendations Lalith Weeratunga emphasized the importance of adopting a holistic and coordinated approach, linking all programs currently carried out by government ministries, for creating greater efficiency in the provision of counseling and psycho-social support.
The National Plan of Action (NPoA) monitoring the implementation of the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) lists several recommendations and activities to address social, economic and mental health needs of vulnerable groups in the former theater of conflict. These include women-headed households, children and the elderly affected by the war, and disabled persons. A number of Ministries, including the Ministry of Social Services, the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Child Development and Women’s Affairs are implementing counseling programs, livelihood development programs and housing programs for these target groups.
Discussions at the meeting centered on the current psychosocial support and counseling programs carried out by various ministries, capacity building for counseling and the evolving of a mechanism to improve support delivery covering all target groups.
The meeting was attended by Vice-Chairperson of the Committee Monitoring LLRC Recommendations and Secretary of the Ministry of Technology and Research Mrs. Dhara Wijayatilake, Secretary of the Ministry of Health Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka, Secretary of the Ministry of Child Development and Women’s Affairs Eric Illayapparachchi, Secretary of the Ministry of Social Services Mrs. Emelda Sukumar and representatives from the Ministry of Economic Development, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Skills Development and Ministry of Law and Order.
'Avurudu Nekath Seettuwa', the traditional document that lists the 'nekath' (auspicious times) for the customs to be followed during the Sinhala and Hindu New Year was handed over to President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Thursday (10) at Carlton House in Tangalle.
The traditional document was handed over to the President by the Minister of Culture and the Arts T. B. Ekanayake at an event organized by the Ministry of Culture and the Arts.
Secretary of the Ministry of Culture and the Arts Wasantha Ekanayake and Ministry officials were present.