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Promoted Major Generals receive their new Rank Insignia from Army Commander

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Twelve senior Brigadiers of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA), who were promoted to the rank of Major-General on the eve of the 73rd National Independence Day received their new rank insignia from General Shavendra Silva, Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Army during a ceremony at the Commander’s office at the Army HQ in Sri Jayewardenepura.

Major-General Priyal Nanayakkarawasam of the Army Service Corps, Commander Forward Maintenance Area – Kilinochchi, Major-General Prasanna Ranawaka of VIR, General Officer Commanding 12 Division, Major-General Nalin Koswatta of VIR, General Officer Commanding 23 Division, Major-General Nandana Dunuwila of Gemunu Watch, General Officer Commanding 56 Division, Major- General Deepal Pussella of VIR, General Officer Commanding 62 Division, Major- General Ajantha Wijesuriya of Gemunu Watch – Brigadier Logistic, Army Logistic Command, Major-General Kithsiri Ekanayake of Sri Lanka Light Infantry, Director-General Plans, Major-General Krishantha Gnanaratne of Commando Regiment – Commandant Sri Lanka Military Academy, Major-General Shiran Abeysekera of Sri Lanka Artillery, Director General Rehabilitation, Major-General Ajith Kolambathantri of Sri Lanka Artillery, Military Secretary, Major-General Saminda Lamahewa of Gemenu Watch, Commandant Combat Training School – Ampara, Major-General Priyantha Jayawardena of Sri Lanka Sinha Regiment, Commandant Infantry Training Centre at Minneriya were among those who received their insignia at the Commander’s office.

General Shavendra Silva appreciatively acknowledging the President’s approval for the deserving and overdue promotions in the country’s key service provider.

He said that such inspiring promotions would inevitably serve as a catalyst to their continuing arduous roles in specific capacities, and were made largely on their merits and specific performances, and not on seniority alone.

While wishing each of them good luck with their future prospects, General Silva reminded them of the significance of their dedicated contribution to concerns of national security, nation-building and community-oriented development tasks, while paying equal focus on varied welfare benefits of all ranks serving under the new Major Generals.

He also asked them to adopt maximum possible precautionary measures to prevent soldiers from the Covid-19 infection, while equally applying precautionary and safety measures to protect civilians from the virus in their areas of responsibility.



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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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