Saturday, September 24, 2011

A not significant Chief Minister conference of Sri Lanka

The writer sent the following news story to a pro-government English website he is writing freelance. It was rejected and the editors comment is not a significant event.

Yes, of course. But this is public money.

The 29th Chief Minister conference of Sri Lanka is held today and tomorrow at Centuria Tourist Resort, Embilipitiya.
The Chief Ministers of eight Provincial Councils, the Chief Secretaries of Provinces, Representatives of Treasury and Finance Commission are to participate in the conference, says the Chairman of the Chief Ministers' Conference Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council Chief Minister Maheepala Herath.
The chairmanship of the Chief Ministers' Conference is to be handed over to the Uva Provincial Council Chief Minister Shashindra Rajapaksa who is to host the 30th Chief Ministers' Conference.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Who transports C-4 to Jaffna?

Sri Lanka police recovered a stock of C-4 explosives planned to be transported to Jaffna in the Northern Province from Monarala in the Uva Province.

Monaragala police says that the stock of C-4 explosives were found last night hidden in the dashboard of a passenger transport bus. The bus is a regular service from Monaragala to Jaffna.

The weight of the stock of explosives is 615 grams, police say.

The driver and the conductor of the bus has been arrested and the interrogation is under way, police say.

Thorough investigation is expected to be conducted by the authorities to identify the elements that are behind the action that appears as an attempt of restarting terrorist activities.

Later reports say Sri Lanka police has sought the support of the military to arrest an Army official who is suspected of attempting to smuggle the stock of C-4 explosives.

The  arrested driver and the conductor of the bus have stated that the parcel was given to them by an Army official from Bibile area that worked in Kilinochchi promising to collect it from Monaragala.

A special police team has been deployed under the instructions of Police Superintendent of Monaragala Wasantha Kandewaththa to carry on the further investigations.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Repeated railway accidents in Sri Lanka; six killed, scores injured

Another train of Sri Lanka Railway met with an accident this morning as a Vavuniya bound train collided with a goods lorry.

The accident occurred on a railway crossing in Anuradhapura and police is investigating if the driver of the lorry drove it ignoring the signals.

The driver of the lorry was killed as the cleaner was admitted into Anuradhapura hospital with injuries.
Yesterday, five persons including an engine driver, an assistant driver, another Sri Lanka Railway employee were killed as an intercity train bound Kandy collided with another passenger train at Alawwa railway station along the main line.

A Thai national Buddhist monk is also among the deceased. At least 30 passengers were injured in the fatal accident.

Friday, September 16, 2011

65 unauthorized children's homes identified from Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Probationary and Child Protection Services Department says that 65 children's homes have been identified as unauthorized places.

Probationary and Child Protection Services Commissioner Sarath Abhayagunawardhana said that he had instructed the Probationary Commissioners island wide to register them or to close these children's homes.

The department says that some of these places lack the minimum requirements for registration as a children's home.

The children's authorities island wide are awaken on the children's homes after a child was burnt to death at an unauthorized children's home in Gampaha district last week.

800 illegal abortions each day in Sri Lanka

Kapila Jayarathna, the Community Health Specialist of the Family Health Bureau of Sri Lanka reveals that recent survey has pointed out that around 800 illegal abortions take place in the island each day.

He also said that 80% of the abortions are for the women above the age of 35 years.

The official said that the number of abortions in Sri Lanka per annum had been estimated as around 290,000.

Every year Sri Lankan women giver birth to around 390,000 children.

Abortion is illegal in Sri Lanka although a large number of illegal abortion centers operate country wide.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A wave of strikes in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is being taken by a wave of strikes in public sector.

The doctors are up in arms against the government's policy of establishing private medical colleges. Although the doctors are highly aligned towards privatization of their service, they appear as if in fear of losing their present prosperous status due to influx of more and more doctors to this ailing society thanks to Minister S.B. Disanayaka's dream of opening more medical colleges. God knows the motive of opening so much of medical colleges. Is lack of them the only problem in higher education of this country?

The management of the Ceylon Electricity Board granted a written pledge to the employees to pay the arrears of 10 months of pay hike granted in 2009 as per installments since January 2012, luckily to prevent a strike today.

The nurses of Anuradhapura hospital struck work for 24 hours since yesterday until this morning to express resentment to workload on them due to shortage in nursing cadre.

The non-academic staff of the universities stage a picketing during the lunch hour today ahead of the decision to report sick on 12th if solutions will not be granted immediately to their problem of salary anomalies.

Field officers of the Forest Department are working to rule since September 02.

Teachers say they will resort to stern trade union action since the Minister has not granted the pledges to resolve the long standing issue of salary anomalies and other problems.

And there are many more burning issues in public sector. The government has somehow broken the backbone of the trade unions. That is the only safeguard for them.

Two years passed the war is over. Small man is not getting any dividend of the so called peace. They are frustrated. Frustration will lead to many problems. Government needs to listen to them.

First implement the law, then call off it due to protest and finally discuss with the stakeholders

Sri Lanka government has decided to postpone the implementation of making the use of plastic crates compulsory in transporting vegetable by two weeks.

Earlier, the government stated that the persons transporting vegetables in ad-hoc wasteful ways would be brought to books since September 05.

However, the farmers protested the move and conducted a strike of bringing vegetable to Dambulla Economic Center as well.

Minister of Cooperatives and Internal Trade Johnston Fernando said that the Ministry would discuss with the stakeholders about the problem to identify the problems.

The farmers accuse that they were not consulted before taking this decision.

It seems the Sri Lanka government's methodology is first implement the law, then call off it due to protest and finally discuss with the stakeholders. Wonder of Asia!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Vegetable laws of Sri Lanka government

Sri Lanka government made the use of plastic crates compulsory in delivery of vegetables since September 01 to save the said 30% waste during transport.

However, the farmers alleged that it was an attempt to sell plastic crates and they were never consulted before imposing this law. Their suspicion about under hand commissions to politicians from plastic crate manufacturers is reasonable.

Farmers also say that suitable crates to deliver some kind of vegetable are unavailable. Farmers also point out that they have to hire vehicles to take the plastic crates back home after delivering vegetables to Economic Center bearing additional cost.

Two days after the vegetable market was affected by this law, the government has slacked it for some vegetables.

One of the readers of our Sinhala blog commented that he had observed that the farmers and traders stamp to press and pack cabbage to gunny sacks. It is true that the delivery methods cause massive waste. Everyone may have seen sometimes valuble fruits like mango are thrown to

But the new methods ask for more trips of lorries to transport vegetables. It also wastes fuel, a totally imported resource. Transport charges may increase and the vegetable prices may further go up.

The government should assist farmers to overcome the problem of wastage. Mere enforcing of laws and fines may affect all stakeholders in the vegetable sector.
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