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Cops irked by Cabinet paper on cases of bogus political victimisation

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By Saman Indrajith

A Cabinet decision taken on Monday to grant 87 policemen alleged to have been politically victimized, promotions and salary increments has irked many senior and junior ranks in the police department.

A senior police officer told The Island that 87 policemen in officer and other ranks were attempting to obtain promotions and salary increments by claiming that they were politically victimised.

The officer said: “As per the Cabinet paper the list contains names of 87 officers and men. Among them are six retired officers including one Senior DIG, interdicted for his alleged involvement in a murder case.

There are many interdicted on disciplinary grounds. There are four senior DIGs, seven DIGs, 11 SSPs, four SPs, eight ASPs, 27 CIs, five IPs, five SIs, six sergeants, four constables, one WSI and one police driver. They are now trying to get promotions claiming  political victimisation. It is unfair by those who have exemplary records in conduct and service. This has demoralised many officers and men in the department.

“Among those on the list is a senior officer punished for dereliction of duty. Under his watch a bottle of water was smuggled into the closed protective circle of the then President Maithripala Sirisena.”

 “They went before a committee appointed soon after the incumbent government came to power and said they had been politically victimised. They are trying to get promotions. Last February, they tried to get the list processed and submitted to the Cabinet, but the Public Security Ministry officials suspended it stating that they needed to study it. It was presented to the Monday’s Cabinet meeting and got the approval.”

Another senior officer said: “One of those to be promoted to the rank of senior DIG claiming  political victimisation is citing as reason a punishment transfer given to him when Pujith Jayasundara was the IGP. The officer is a DIG and was caught with his paramour by his wife, who requested the IGP him to transfer the man to save their family. He was transferred to Mannar. Now, that DIG says he was politically victimised and trying to get promotions and other benefits denied to him because of his indiscipline and behaviour unbecoming  of an officer.”

A spokesman for the Public Security Ministry said that the ministry had received complaints that on the list of alleged victims were some officers who had obtained promotions, transfers and salary increments during the Yahapalana government, by claiming political victimisation under the previous administration. 



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Washington will continue to support Lanka’s fight against Covid-19

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US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B. Teplitz explaining a point to Speaker Mahinda Yapa Aebywardena during their meeting yesterday.

US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B. Teplitz yesterday said that the US would continue to support Sri Lanka’s fight against Covid-19 through the COVAX facility.

She made the pledge during a courtesy call on Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena yesterday, Parliament sources said.

Marcus Carpenter, Deputy Chief of political division and Kushani Rohanadeera, Deputy Secretary-General of Parliament and Chief of Staff were also present at the meeting which was held at the Speaker’s Office in Parliament.

A number of issues of mutual interest were discussed between Sri Lanka and the US, including diplomatic and economic matters. Furthermore, the future intended investments of the United States in Sri Lanka for the future of the energy sector were also discussed, sources said.

The US Ambassador to Sri Lanka expressed how pleased she was over the steps taken to establish a Special Committee for the purpose of reforming the current electoral system in Sri Lanka and the steps taken by Parliament to re-establish the Sectoral Oversight Committees of Parliament.

The Ambassador also informed the Speaker that the US continues to support the development of Sri Lanka and protect democracy in the face of COVID faced by the whole world.

 

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Institute of Chemistry organises webinar on ‘Genes, Immunity and COVID-19 Vaccines’

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Arrangements have been made by the Institute of Chemistry Ceylon to conduct a webinar on “Genes, Immunity and COVID-19 Vaccines” with the intention of disseminating awareness on the widely spread COVID-19 and the importance of vaccination.

The webinar will be held via zoom from 8.30 am to 12.00 noon on Sept 4, a press release issued by the Institute said yesterday.

It said: The ongoing COVID-19 outbreak that originated in the city of Wuhan, China, has claimed countless lives within a span of two years causing significant damage to the world’s population and the global economy. Within the passage of a year, the emergence of changing COVID-19 variants with higher transmissibility, increased fatality was discovered around the globe. Currently, Sri Lanka is fighting the third wave of coronavirus and there has been an increase in the number of cases of the highly transmissible Delta variant of coronavirus across the country.

With the current situation, the need and importance of vaccination has become a vital tool in the battle against coronavirus. Vaccines save millions of lives each year and the development of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines is a huge step taken forward in the effort to end the pandemic. Misinformation on COVID-19 vaccines provided by different information channels have led to hesitations in accepting the COVID-19 vaccine among the population. This seminar will provide information on COVID-19 vaccines currently available and will be an immense help to clear any doubt with regards to COVID-19 vaccines.

The programme hopes to cover topics such as “Genomics of COVID-19” by Dr. Sameera. R. Samarakoon. “COVID-19 and Nutrition” by Prof. Ranil Jayawardena, “Immune response in COVID- 19: friend or foe” by Dr. Narmada Fernando, “COVID-19 Vaccine: What is Best” by Prof. Chandima Jeewandra and “Concluding Remarks and a Q&A session” by Prof. Nimal Punyasiri. The seminar will be moderated by Prof. Chayanika Padumadasa.

You can register to this webinar by visiting the IchemC website (ichemc.edu.lk) while more information can be obtained by contacting the Institute at 011-2861231. Also you may obtain information by sending an email to covidseminar21@gmail.com

For more details, please contact Ms. Nishadi (077 730 6270) / Ms. Shanali (076 553 2142)

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COVID Shield app introduced to Sri Lanka to fight against COVID-19 pandemic

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Health Informatics Society of Sri Lanka (HISSL) and the Commonwealth Centre for Digital Health (CWCDH) have introduced the COVID Shield app to Sri Lanka to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID Shield App allows users to assess their lung health on a regular basis to identify deteriorations associated with COVID-19 early.

The app uses the in-built sound recording features of a smartphone to analyze the breathing sounds and gather additional data when the user performs several simple tests to determine breathing performance.

The app tracks lung health along with other symptoms to support identifying COVID-19 related deterioration early.

In addition to identifying the state of lung health, COVID Shield is also capable of providing the users with alerts based on overall assessment of his or her symptoms. Based on these alerts, the users can take the next step without delaying seeking medical advice. The users will also receive COVID-19 related health education and latest statistics from reliable sources on his or her dashboard.

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