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A 75 day official promotional programme for the UN International Day of Wesak. – The inauguration at the parliamentary complex tomorrow.

A 75 day media campaign will be worked off to promote the UN international Day of Wesak and the Buddhist conference scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka. The programme will commence during a ceremony held in this regard at the parliamentary complex under the patronage of Minster of parliamentary reforms and Mass Media Gayantha Karunathilleka.

The contribution of both government and private sector media institutions will be sought. Both local and foreign members of the Maha Sangha, International Buddhist leaders, ministers of Buddhist Affairs, diplomats as well as representatives of Buddhist organizations amounting to over 1000 are due participation. The Ministry of Buddhist Affairs highlight this to be the first International Buddhist festival with a mass participation to be held in the country subsequent to the conclusion of the conflict. Its inauguration ceremony will be held at the BMICH Colombo on the 12th of May.

President Maithripala Sirisena and the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi will grace the occasion as Chief Guests. The closing ceremony will be held at the Sri Dalada Maligawa under the patronage of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe.

The minister of Finance says local farmers will be protected though import tax on rice reduced.


Minister Ravi Karunanayke says the reduction of import tax on rice would not make any impact on the local farmers.He added the government’s policy is to protect both consumer and the farmer. Minister Karunanayke made these comments at a meeting held at the Gangarama viharaya of Mattakkuliya.


A capsized boat kills 11 people in Katukurunda sea.


At least 11 persons were killed and several others went missing after a boat carrying a group of people capsized in sea off Katukurunda coast today. 15 people were on the board when the accident took place. The police said the remains of the deceased have been taken to the Nagoda hospital. A search operation is underway with the assistance from the Navy and Sri Lanka Air Force to locate the missing persons. The Navy has deployed several boats, while an Air Force Bell 212 helicopter has also been deployed to assist the rescue operation.  The boat was among several vessels that departed for Kalutara from the Beruwala fisheries harbour for a religious purpose. 19 boats had been deployed for the religious ceremony.

The health authorities will monitor the concessions given to eye lenses .


The prices of 38 varieties of eye lenses have been regulated and as a result the prices have been reduced in large scales, offering a huge relief to the people. The price of the entire package of eye lens has been reduced. Accordingly, it is expected that the prices of eye surgeries too will go down. The sleuths of the national drug regulatory authority will monitor the new price level.
The full price reduction list is available in a Gazette Notification and would be published through media for the benefit of the public. The prices were regulated with the participation of all stake holders.
According to Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, arrangements would be made to regulate the prices of the rest of the drugs, medical devices, private hospitals, all laboratory tests in the private sector, etc for the benefit of the people. Health is not only a profit making business, it is a service. Various problems had occurred when the decades long procedure changed. It is unavoidable. But the people were benefited. Minister Dr. Senaratne pointed out that various internal and external pressures were put on him when he reduced the prices of 48 drugs and it was same when the prices of eye lenses were reduced.

The health minister wonders at the status of hospitals in the Hambanthota district where an executive president ascended to the power.

Meanwhile, minister Rajitha Senarathne said that the base hospitals that are lacking better administrative system need to be acquired to the central government.  He was speaking at the opening of blood transfusion center at the Tangalle base hospital. The minister said that it is an amazing fact as the hospitals of the Hambanthota district are in least developed status though an executive president was elected from the same district.  The minister promised to  develop all   the hospitals of the district in due course. Ten storyed building will be constructed for the Tangalle base hospital.

Two more suspects have been arrested in connection with the abduction of Journalist Keith Noyer


The Police say two more suspects have been arrested this morning in connection with the abduction of Journalist Keith Noyer. The two suspects are said to be corporals of Sri Lanka Army. They will be produced before Mount Lavinia Magistrate courts today. Three more suspects including a Major of the Army had been arrested in this connection yesterday.

The minister of electricity assures that there will not be any power cut although low levels of water prevail in several reservoirs.



Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya says there will not be any power cut at any means although the water levels of reservoirs are in low. He stated this to the media men when he was engaged in an observation tour to look into the present situation at the Maussa and Casalrey reservoirs. In considering the dry weather situation, the sufficient water for hydro power electricity generation is maintained only until the 21st of April. Anyhow, he said the government has taken necessary measures for further electricity generation.

The three faculties of the Ruhuna university which were closed down will be reopened on Monday.


Three faculties that had been closed down in university of Ruhuna, will be reopen on Monday. Vice chancellor professor Gamini Senanayake said this decision has been taken by a special committee comprised of himself, deputy vice chancellor and other professors of the university. Accordingly the faculties of technology, Science and Marine Science will be reopened. All the students are requested to report to their respective hostels from tomorrow. These faculties of the university had to be closed down due to a clash between the students and a group of villagers surrounding the university.

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