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PCoI issues notice on former IGP, ex- justice minister

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by Shyam Nuwan Ganewatta

Notice was issued on former IGP Pujith Jayasundara, former Minister of Justice Thalatha Atukorale and assistant prisons commissioner, Dhammika Wickramasinghe to appear before the Presidential Commission of Inquiry (PCoI) on political victimization under the previous government on August 24.

The PCoI issued notice after considering evidence given by former Prisons Commissioner Emil Ranjith Lamahewa.

Attorney-at-law Chamal Fernando, appearing for Lamahewa also asked the PCoI to issue notice on Chairman of Public Service Commission. The PCoI rejected the request. Fernando said that his client had appealed to the Public Service Commission about his promotion but had not received a reply.

 



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Fake computer institutes ruin career of Odisha jobseekers

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When Rajendra Sahu from the Jajpur district furnished an application for Gram Rojgar Sevak (GRS) post with a bachelor’s degree and computer proficiency certificates, little did he know that his application would be rejected on the grounds that his computer literacy certificate was not acceptable as the said institute where he obtained it is not an affiliated/recognised institute from any university/DOEACC.

The 25-year-old jobseeker had pinned high hopes on making it to the merit list as he graduated with honours obtaining 62% of marks. With the state government making computer-literacy mandatory for base level contractual jobs, he enrolled in a PGDCA course in a private institute.

Sahu was not aware of the fact that the institute is not affiliated/recognised from any university/DOEACC. He got the certificate without attending any online/offline classes or exams. He had to cough up Rs 5,000 towards the admission charges with additional Rs 1,000 towards the cost of the certificate. He paid the fees out of the hard-earned money of his father, a small-scale farmer.

Sahu committed the cardinal mistake in seeking admission in an unauthorised institute instead of pursuing the course in a government-authorised institution. Sahu is not alone to face this predicament. Like him, lakhs of other unemployed youths have been taken for a ride by such institutes mushrooming in the state. Sahu has finally realised his gaffe and is currently enrolled with an authorised institute in computer proficiency course. – Statesman/ANN

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Devotees leave thousands of kilos of plastic in Kumana

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Wildlife officers, at Kumana National Park, removed about 4000 kilos of plastic waste, left behind by devotees who visited the Kebilitta Devale, Park Warden R.A.D. Samaranayaka said.Officials collected the plastic waste from a 18 km range, from the entrance to the park to Kebilitta Devale.Samaranayaka said most of the waste was biscuit wrappers.

He said that officials had collected the plastic during a special cleanup program between 8 and 10 August. Over 300 people took part in the programme.

“We were assisted by Navy officers as well as volunteers. This was a great help. Each year, we collect thousands of kilos of plastic waste following the pilgrimage,” he said.

The devotees have been making this trip for hundreds of years and that it was only in the last three decades that plastic had become a serious problem, he said.

“If we leave the plastic waste in the park, it will have a significant negative impact on the environment. Animals will also eat them and die painfully from digestive tract issues. We urge devotees to use less plastic as possible,” he said. (IN)

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Karu supports 22nd Amendment and calls on Parliament to pass it unanimously

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The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution is a step forward for the future benefit of the country, Karu Jayasuriya, the Chairman of the National Movement for a Just Society, said.He said that it is the responsibility of the people’s representatives to ensure it is adopted unanimously.

“We highly appreciate the submission of the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution to the Parliament which will revoke the 20th Amendment, which paved the way for a dictatorial government by severely distorting the democratic governance traditions of Sri Lanka. We consider it as a positive step taken to update the 19th Amendment to the Constitution,” he said.

Given below are excerpts of the statement. “It also must be noted that the step to be taken on September 6 to do away with the attempts to retain a number of crucial powers of the Executive Presidency, as included in the previous draft, will be commended by all who value democracy. As the National Movement for Social Justice, we express our gratitude to the Honourable President, the Minister of Justice and the Government for standing up for such democratic reforms.

“It is our expectation that when the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution is debated, in Parliament, on September 6, all the members of Parliament will stand on the side of the people. We also hope that the amendment can be adopted unanimously, after the debate on it.

“The foremost responsibility of the people’s representatives, in this country, is to create a country where future generations can live happily by working to ensure democracy and the betterment of the people. In order to fulfil that responsibility, we must focus our attention on the political and economic reforms that must be carried out. This is why we had to fight against the 20th Amendment to the Constitution brought by the previous government and struggle to have it withdrawn. That is why we continue to advocate for social and political transformations, including economic reforms that should be carried out for the good of the country.

“At the same time, the other important point that we emphasise is that although the government is working towards admirable political changes, such as the introduction of the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, which is praised, not only by Sri Lankan’s respecting democratic values, but also the civilised world, we, as an organisation, do not agree with certain measures taken by the government through the use of Emergency powers.

We do not condone the harassment of trade union leaders and activists of the peaceful struggle who have made great sacrifices for democracy, under any circumstance. We are greatly saddened by these incidents. We are also deeply concerned about reports of what could be considered as abductions. Such events cause both national and internationally negative effects on the country. We, therefore, believe that the honourable President must pay personal attention to these matters.”

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