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Danusha Marine’s Rs 300 mn boatyard commissioned

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Text and pictures by PRIYAN  DE SILVA

Danusha Marine’s state of the art boat yard built with an investment of Rs. 300 million at Payagala was declared open by the Secretary to the Ministry of Ports and Shipping U. D. Jayalal yesterday morning .

The yard was completed early this year, but it was not possible to have an opening ceremony due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But the management was compelled to commence operations to meet delivery deadlines and the  first 20 meter multi day fishing vessel ‘FV OCEAN HARVEST’  built at the yard for Ocean Harvest Ltd of Mauritius was also launched yesterday.

The 2,500-square-metre boat yard situated on a three acre land at Diyalagoda Payagala has modern equipment and technology used in boat manufacturing and has capacity to build three 24 meter boats concurrently.

Managing Director of Danusha Marine Pvt. Ltd., and Danusha Group Sumithra Fernando recalled the beginning of his venture on a ten-perch block of land in Moratuwa with Rs, 5,000 in his pocket two decades back and said that the new yard at Payagala which was his fourth was expected to bring in over USD 1 million into the country in the first year and USD 3 million from the second year onwards.

Mahen Sookun Managing Director of Ocean Harvest Ltd owner of the first vessel built at the yard, addresing the audience via Internet said that he had selected Danusha Marine because of the facilities they had and the sincerity of MD Sumithra Fernando.

Danusha Fernando, Directress of Danusha Marine welcomed the invitees while  Indira Malwatta former Chairperson of the Export Development Board, who supported the setting up of the boatyard, Secretary to the Ministry of Warehouse Facilities,  Container Yards, Port Supply Facilities and Boat and Shipping Industry Development D.D. Mataraarachchi,   Director General Department of Fisheries Prasanna Ginige and Secretary to the Ministry of Ports and Shipping U D Jayalal addressed the occasion 

Minister of Fisheries Douglas Devananda,  Minister of Ports and Shipping  Rohitha Abeygunawardena, State Minister of Ornamental Fish, Inland Fish & Prawn Farming, Fishery Harbour Development, Multi day Fishing Activities and Fish Exports Kanchana Wijesekera,      State Minister of Warehouse Facilities, Container Yards, Port Supply Facilities and Boats and Shipping Industry Development,  Jayantha Samaraweera  who accepted the invitation to attend the opening ceremony did not attend  due to urgent commitments at Parliament.



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Cardinal: Was there any link between passage of 20A and Easter Sunday probe outcome?

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… stands by his claim of foreign involvement

By Norman Palihawadana

Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith yesterday said that there could be a connection between the outcome of the probe into the Easter Sunday attacks and the enlisting of Muslim MPs’ support for the passage of the 20th Amendment.

The Cardinal said: “The leader of a Muslim political party voted against the 2Oth Amendment. But his MPs voted for it. The brother of Rishad Bathiudeen too was released around the same time. These are questionable developments. These events could be part of a deal.”

The Cardinal reiterated that international forces were behind the Easter Sunday attacks and that he did not believe that there had been any local political group directly involved in the Easter attacks.

Addressing the media yesterday, the Cardinal said that the remarks he made on Sunday had been misunderstood. He stood by his claim that international forces had been behind the attacks, he said.

“However, some people claim that I said a local political group was behind the attack. I have always maintained that there are international forces that use religious and ethnic extremists such as Wahabists to create conflicts. I was referring to such groups.”

The Cardinal added that only a small group of Muslims was involved in extremism.

The Archbishop also said that former President Maithripala Sirisena believed that taking action against extremists like NTJ leader Zahran Hashim would create unnecessary issues.

“Something along these lines is also in the PCoI on Easter Sunday attacks. The report also implies that the then Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was lenient in dealing with growing extremism in Sri Lanka.”

The Cardinal urged the government to protect the country and ensure that there would be no repeats of incidents like the Easter Sunday attacks.

The Archbishop of Colombo requested all religious leaders to work on rebuilding trust among all communities.

 

 

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AG appeals to Supreme Court against granting of bail to Ravi, others

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The Attorney General yesterday appealed to the Supreme Court against bail for former Minister Ravi Karunanayake and seven others indicted in the bond case by the Colombo Special High Court Trial-at-Bar.

The eight accused were arrested and remanded over the bond scams. Later, they were released on bail.

The court warned that if the accused attempted to exert influence on the witnesses, by any means, bail would be revoked and they would be placed on remand until the end of the trial.

 

 

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26 more coronavirus cases detected in Jaffna Tirunelveli market area

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Another 26 COVID-19 cases had been detected on Sunday, from the Tirunelveli Market in Jaffna, which was the epicentre of the recent outbreak in the town, Dr. A. Kethiswaran, Regional Director Health Services told the media yesterday.

The market and its surroundings had been reopened on April 11 following a 19-day lockdown. However, 378 PCR tests were conducted after the Sinhala and Tamil New Year and 26 of them proved positive.

Dr. Kethiswaran warned last week that there might be a spike in COVID-19 cases in Jaffna after the New Year celebrations.

A large number of COVID-19 cases had been reported in Jaffna in the past few weeks. Thus, the people should adhere to health guidelines. If people did not follow the guidelines, there would be a spike in cases and then some places would have to be lockdown, he warned.

“It’s too early to say whether we have to close the area down. We are monitoring the situation,” DR. Kethiswaran said.

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