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H’tota Port increases bulk cargo handling productivity by 100%

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The Hambantota International Port (HIP) has recorded its highest discharge levels of bulk cargo recently, when a shipment of gypsum consigned to Insee Cement was unloaded at a rate of 24,000 Metric tons per day by port operations.

The HIP in a statement issued yesterday (21) quoted Thusith Gunawarnasuriya, Director Procurement & Logistics of Insee Cement as having said that this was an extraordinary achievement for a Sri Lankan port in terms of speed and efficiency. “As the No. 1 cement manufacturing company in Sri Lanka, we import raw materials in large vessels. But once these vessels arrive in the country, it is up to port operations, in this case HIPG and HIPS, to discharge the vessels quickly. Quicker the cargo is discharged, the more benefit not only to us but also the country because for each day the vessel remains in port we pay vast amounts in detention and demurrage — something to the tune of US $ 75,000. Therefore, when we are able to discharge two-and-a-half days earlier like we did this time, the cost saving is significant. Yes, it is an advantage for our company, but it is also a considerable saving in foreign exchange for the country.”

Gunawarnasuriya said the handling speed at HIP has increased 100 percent from just about a year ago, when the port could discharge only around 12,000 MTs per day. He says the almost doubled productivity coupled with excellent service levels is nothing short of remarkable.

Sylesh Peerez, Senior General Manager Operations of Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) attributes the port’s increased efficiency to a high level of productivity, streamlined operations combined with excellent coordination. “Apart from that, our team’s execution was flawless. There are a lot of constraints in handling an operation like this as it involves unloading via cranes, loading material onto trucks etc., which means we have to ensure minimum impact on the environment, health and safety of those involved in the operation etc. Achieving this level of productivity amidst all these constraints is a milestone for HIP and we believe is a first by a Sri Lankan port.” Sylesh Peerez said the way they optimized and increased their resources, efficient planning of manpower such as stevedoring, and the higher levels of communication between the logistics provider and the port also contributed to the success of the operation. “We were able to complete a very labor intensive operation notwithstanding strict adherence to COVID protocols,” he added.

Lance Zuo, General Manager, Commercial and Marketing of HIPG asserted HIP was fast approaching its goal of becoming a fully functional multi-purpose port. He said the port was firing on all cylinders, which involves continuous training and testing of its systems for optimum efficiency which is part of the DNA of all CM Port operations across the globe.



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MP’s wife, father-in-law among three detained

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Rishad held under PTA to be questioned

16-year-old girl’s death:

By Shamindra Ferdinando

Police investigating the death of 16-year-old Ishalini, the domestic servant at All Ceylon Makkal Congress (ACMC) leader Rishad Bathiudeen’s Baudhaloka Mawatha residence have arrested Ayesha Shiabdeen, 46, the wife of the former minister.

Police also took into custody Rishad’s father-in-law Mohammed Shiabdeen, 70, and Ponnaiah Pandaram alias Shankar, 64, a resident of Dayagama.

Police Spokesman Senior DIG Ajith Rohana said that Shankar had brought Ilashini from Dayagama to the Baudhaloka Mawatha residence of Samagi Jana Balavegaya (SJB) Vanni District lawmaker late last year.

Having studied the post postmortem report, they were taken into custody in terms of Section 360 C and Section 308 B of the Penal Code that dealt with human trafficking and cruelty to children, the top police officer said. According to him, so far 20 statements had been recorded.

Asked whether MP Bathiudeen, too, had been among the questioned, Senior DIG Rohana said the parliamentarian detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) over 2019 Easter Sunday carnage, too, would be interrogated in that regard.

The ACMC contested the last general election on the SJB ticket. It switched its allegiance to the SJB ahead of 2020 general election after having represented the cabinet in UNP led yahapalana administration. Rishad has also served President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s cabinet during his second term.

Having suffered serious burn injuries on July 3 at the MP’s residence and admitted to the National Hospital, Illashini succumbed to her injuries on July 15th. Medical examination revealed that she had been raped over a period of time.

The police spokesman said that they intended to secure court approval to detain the suspects for 72 hours. A Superintendent of Police could obtain such approval on the strength of a B report submitted to the court in respect of offenses on children.

Although, the police indicated earlier in the day they would be produced in Colombo Magistrate court they weren’t brought in.

Meanwhile, the SJB said that interested parties were making a despicable attempt to politicize the incident. The police should be allowed to conduct the investigation without interference, a spokesman for the main Opposition party said.

 

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Women’s organisations in North conduct protests demanding justice for Ilashini

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A section of those engaged in Jaffna protests

 

By Dinasena Ratugamage

Women’s organisations in the North yesterday held a number of demonstrations in Vavuniya, Mannar, Kilinochchi and Jaffna against the death of J. Ilashini, the 16 -year-old girl who died while working at SJB MP Rishad Bathiudeen’s residence.

The protesters urged authorities to ensure that investigations into the death are conducted in a transparent manner. The family of the victim should be compensated and those guilty punished, they said.

Representatives of the organisations said that if justice was not done, they would hold a massive demonstration in Tarapuram, Mannar, which Bathiudeen represents in Parliament.

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Dancer lodges complaint with police over FB post 

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Police headquarters yesterday (23) said that dancer Anusha Damayanthi had lodged a complaint with the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) over a Facebook post alleging that she was running a brothel.

Police headquarters said that Damayanthi, while denying the accusation, had also brought to the CID’s notice that a minister was being accused of lambasting the Walana anti-crime strike force for carrying out the raid. Police said that an investigation was underway.

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