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Indian boost for Coast Guard

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Deputy Indian HC Vinod Jacob and Rear Admiral Gewman Ekanayake signing relevant papers regarding the equipment transfer (pic courtesy Indian HC)

 

The government of India has gifted Sri Lanka, 650 machinery parts worth 120 mn LKR to augment maintenance capability of Sri Lanka Coast Guard Ship Suraksha that was presented by New Delhi in October 2017, the Indian High Commission spokesperson said yesterday (29). The handing over of much needed equipment was indicative of the growing cooperation, camaraderie and friendship between the two nations and their forces including the Coast Guards, the official said.

The following is the text of Indian HC statement: “The machinery parts of the final consignment were formally presented to the Director General, SLCG, Rear Admiral Gewman Ekanayake by Vinod Jacob, the Deputy High Commissioner of India, in a function organised on 29 June 2021 at SLCG Base Waruna. The spares would ensure prolonged utility of the SLCGS Suraksha, which is the only Offshore Patrol Vessel of Sri Lanka Coast Guard and the mainstay of patrolling and surveillance undertaken by SLCG at sea.  The spares included main machinery spares, shaft, gearbox etc. The spares will facilitate expeditious repairs, improved sea going capability and increased overall life cycle of the ship.

It may be recalled, that during the recently conducted High Level Meeting (HLM) on 22 June 2021 between Indian Coast Guard and Sri Lanka Coast Guard the assurance of India’s fullest cooperation in the field of maritime security and capacity building was reiterated. This is in line with India’s Vision of Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR) and the “Neighbourhood First” policy; which further translate into capacity building initiatives with countries in the Indian Ocean Region including Sri Lanka.”



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Shocking 17,500 video clips of Lankan children being sexually abused

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By Norman Palihawadane

There were over 17,500 video clips of Sri Lankan children being sexually abused, on the Internet and action had been taken to arrest those responsible, Police Spokesman Senior DIG Ajith Rohana said yesterday. The Sri Lanka Police had sought the assistance of international law enforcement agencies and the Internet service providers to track down the persons involved in uploading those video clips and child sex trafficking via internet, the SDIG said.

Crimes against children in Sri Lanka were rising at an alarming speed, the SDIG said.

The police would conduct a special awareness programme together with the National Child Protection Authority to curb the alarming trend, he said.

The first programme was held recently in Nuwara Eliya where it especially focused apprising police officers attached to that Division.

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Private buses to insist that inter-provincial commuters carry proof of vaccination?

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By Rathindra Kuruwita

A limited number of Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) and National Transport Commission (NTC) buses and trains would maintain limited inter- provincial operation from 01 August, State Minister of Transport, Dilum Amunugma said.

The State Minister said that certified documents issued by the respective depot superintendents and the letters of approval by the NTC were mandatory, he added.

“The buses and trains will be permitted to operate only in the morning and in the evening for office workers,” Amunugma said.

The State Minister added that passengers should behave responsibly when using the inter-provincial transport services and understand that those services were only for commuters engaged in essential services.

“The Delta variant is spreading rapidly. If one infected passenger travels in a bus, all other commuters will contract it” he warned.

The Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) has decided to make proof of vaccination compulsory for inter provincial travel from 01 August

LPBOA President Gemunu Wijeratne said they had written to the President and Transport Minister asking for permission to enforce it.

Wijeratne said that all bus operators in the Western Province should ensure they were inoculated by August 15.

 

 

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TNA Leader complains against appointing Sinhala officers to Tamil areas

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By Dinasena Ratugamage

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) Leader, R. Sampanthan had written to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister, Mahinda Rajapaksa, objecting to the appointment of Sinhala government officers to the Northern Province, former TNA MP Mavai Senathirajah told journalists on Wednesday (28.)

The President and the Prime Minister are appointing officials violating democratic principles, Senathirajah said after a meeting of party activists at Karachchi Divisional Secretariat Office, Kilinochchi.

“A lot of Sinhalese are appointed to the North and the East. They must appoint Tamils. These appointments undermine our struggle for a just language policy,” he said.

Senathirajah said that it was customary to appoint Tamil officers to Tamil majority areas. However, this tradition was being violated increasingly in recent times, the former MP said.

“The TNA has nothing against Sinhala government officers. However, appointing Sinhala state officers to majority Tamil areas is a great injustice to the people. So, our leader has written to the President and the Prime Minister asking them to stop this practice,” he said.

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