Friday, May 24, 2024

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Sri Lanka Original Narrative Summary: 23/04

  1. The Presidential Secretariat responds to concerns about rice quality at the Veyangoda warehouse, ensuring only rice approved by a health expert committee will be used for school meals: addresses allegations from the Public Health Inspectors’ Union, highlighting rigorous quality checks with endorsements from expert committees and analytical reports: instructs health sector teams to re-inspect and strategise the use of rice stocks by May 1: stresses the role of health officials and School Nutrition Committees in ensuring food safety and compliance with international standards: The reassurance came after a thorough inspection by diverse health sector representatives, confirming rice suitability.
  2. SLPP Chief Organiser Minister Prasanna Ranatunga says he still has no knowledge of any presidential candidate to be put forward by the Party: adds no such decision has yet been taken by the SLPP: suggests that he is no ‘SLPP Leader’ and a decision regarding candidacy may be taken at a future polit-bureau meeting.
  3. The National People’s Power (NPP) responds to the Samagi Jana Balawegaya’s (SJB) proposition of having a debate between the two opposition parties on which course of action would the JVP-led alliance take to resolve the economic crisis under an NPP-rule: asserts a debate between their leaders, Anura Kumara Dissanayake and Sajith Premadasa: sends a letter offering several dates (May 7, 9, 13, or 14) for the debate and emphasises the importance of setting a clear date to avoid confusion.
  4. The ‘Sri Ramayan Trails’ project launched in Colombo, aiming to boost tourism by showcasing nine significant sites from the epic Ramayana: Led by His Holiness Swami Govind Dev Giri Maharaj, the initiative seeks to deepen cultural ties between India and Sri Lanka: Using advanced technology like AI, AR, and VR, the project offers an immersive experience for visitors. Notable dignitaries attended the launch, highlighting its significance.
  5. The Meteorology Department warns of further increase of heat index up to ‘caution level’ in most parts of the island, despite the recurrence of showers: advises the public to stay hydrated and take breaks in the shade as often as possible, check up on the elderly and the sick, never leave children unattended, limit strenuous outdoor activities, find shade and stay hydrated, wear lightweight and white or light-coloured clothing.
  6. The Central Bank identifies eight more entities involved in prohibited pyramid schemes, warning the public against participating in such schemes as they are punishable offenses: These entities are Beecoin App/Sunbird Foundation, Fast Win (Pvt) Ltd, Fruugo Oline App/Fruugo Oline (Pvt) Ltd, Genesis Business School/Era Miracle (Pvt) Ltd, Isimaga International (Pvt) Ltd, Ledger Block, Qnet/Questnet and Ride to Three Freedom (Pvt) Ltd.: reaffirms its commitment to protecting consumers and maintaining the integrity of the financial system by cracking down on illicit financial activities.
  7. The Census and Statistics Department reports a drop in the Y-o-Year inflation rate to 2.5% in March 2024 from 5.1% in February: Food group inflation remains at 5.0%, while non-food group inflation decreases to 0.7%: Notable price decreases were observed in categories like housing and clothing, while increases were seen in alcoholic beverages and restaurants: Core inflation rose to 3.4%, suggesting underlying inflationary pressures: Analysts emphasise the need for robust economic policies to address living costs despite signs of stability.
  8. H.M.K.W. Bandara, the General Manager of Railways, tragically passes away this morning (23) after succumbing to a sudden and unexpected illness.
  9. The Sri Lanka Army clarifies that scheduling the ‘Fox Hill Super Cross’ race on April 21st, coinciding with the Easter Attacks anniversary, was unintentional: Amid criticism, the Army stated the date selection was not deliberate and the event’s resumption after four years was due to public demand: emphasises no involvement in an after-party and reiterates their immediate race cancellation in 2019 after the attacks.
  10. Afghanistan ‘A’ cricket team arrives today (23) for a series against Sri Lanka ‘A’, featuring five one-day games and one four-day game: Sri Lanka ‘A’ squad, led by Sahan Arachchige, awaits ministerial approval: Avishka Gunawardena coaches Sri Lanka ‘A’, while his former assistant takes on a role with the national team.

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