|Japan nuke plant ‘in
meltdown’; ‘1,000 quake dead’
|MINAMI SOMA, Japan (AFP) - Japan warned Saturday that
one of its nuclear plants may be in meltdown after a record
quake and tsunami wiped out a swathe of the northeast,
leaving more than 1,000 people feared dead.
Reactor cooling systems failed at two plants after Friday’s
record 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit, unleashing a terrifying
10-metre (33-foot) high wave that tore through coastal towns
and cities, destroying all in its path.
Kyodo News agency said radioactive caesium had been detected
near the Quake-hit atomic plant Fukushima No. 1, about 250
kilometres (160 miles) northeast of Tokyo, citing the
Japanese nuclear safety commission. The plant “may be
experiencing nuclear meltdown”, Kyodo and Jiji reported.
The cooling system of the plant was damaged in the massive
earthquake that struck the region 24 hours earlier, leaving
authorities scrambling to fix the problem and evacuate more
than 45,000 residents within a 10-kilometre radius.
Thousands were also evacuated from near a second plant,
Fukushima No. 2, which also suffered damage to its cooling
Parts of the No. 1 reactor’s nuclear fuel rods were briefly
exposed to the air Saturday after cooling water levels
dropped and a fire engine was pumping water into the
reactor, Jiji Press reported.
The water levels were recovering, said operator Tokyo
Electric Power (TEPCO), according to Jiji. A spokesman told
AFP that “we believe the reactor is not melting down or
cracking. We are trying to raise the water level.”
The atomic emergency came as the country struggled to assess
the full extent of the devastation wreaked by the massive
tsunami, which was unleashed by the strongest quake ever
recorded in Japan.
The towering wall of water pulverised the northeastern city
of Sendai, where police reportedly said 200-300 bodies had
been found on the coast.
More than 215,000 people were in emergency shelters, police
The full scale of those left homeless was believed to be
much higher, with police saying they had not received a
tally from Miyagi prefecture, the hard-hit province that is
home to Sendai.
“What used to be residential areas were mostly swept away in
many coastal areas and fires are still blazing there,” Prime
Minister Naoto Kan said after surveying the damage by
The unstoppable black tide picked up shipping containers,
wrecked cars and the debris of shattered homes and crashed
through the streets of Sendai and across open fields,
forming a mud slick that covered vast tracts of land.
“There are so many people who lost their lives,” an elderly
man told TV reporters before breaking down in tears. “I have
no words to say.”
An AFP tally compiled from national and provincial police
data put the confirmed death toll at at least 703.
“It is believed that more than 1,000 people have lost their
lives,” said Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano.
“The damage is so enormous that it will take us much time to
gather data,” an official at the police agency told AFP.
Authorities said more than 3,000 homes were destroyed or
swept away and tens of thousands of people spent the night
in emergency shelters.
The tsunami obliterated Rikuzentakata, a coastal city of
some 23,000 people, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency
Some 50,000 military and other rescue personnel were pushed
into action to spearhead the Herculean rescue and recovery
effort with hundreds of ships, aircraft and vehicles headed
to the Pacific coast area.
Army helicopters airlifted people off the roof of an
elementary school in Watari, Miyagi prefecture.
The towering wave set off alerts across the Pacific,
sparking evacuations in Hawaii and on the US West Coast.
Chile said it was evacuating coastal areas and Ecuador’s
state oil company announced it had suspended crude oil
exports due to risks posed by the tsunami.
The Bank of Japan said it would do its “utmost” to ensure
the stability of financial markets after the quake brought
huge disruption to key industries.
Major manufacturers including Toyota, Nissan and Sony were
forced to suspend production at some sites, raising
short-term concerns for the nation’s struggling economy.
In quake-hit areas 5.6 million households had no power
Saturday and more than one million households were without
water. Telecommunications networks were also hit.
Leading international offers of help, President Barack Obama
mobilised the US military to provide emergency aid after
what he called a “simply heartbreaking” disaster.
The United States, which has nearly 40,000 military
personnel in Japan, ordered a flotilla including two
aircraft carriers and support ships to the region to provide
The quake, which hit at 2:46 pm (0546 GMT) and lasted about
two minutes, rattled buildings in greater Tokyo, the world’s
largest urban area and home to some 30 million people.
Millions were left stranded in the evening after the
earthquake shut down the city’s vast subway system.
But with small quakes felt every day somewhere in Japan, the
country is one of the best prepared to deal with the
aftermath of such a calamity.
“If there is any place in the world ready for a disaster of
the scale and scope of this historic calamity, it is Japan,”
said Stacey White, senior research consultant at the Centre
for Strategic and International Studies.
In a rare piece of good news, a ship that was earlier
reported missing was found swept out to sea and all 81
people aboard were airlifted to safety.
But mostly the picture was one of utter devastation.
The tsunami submerged the runway at Sendai airport, while a
process known as liquefaction, caused by the intense shaking
of the tremor, turned parts of the ground to liquid.
Hours after the quake struck, TV images showed huge orange
balls of flame rolling up into the night sky as fires raged
around a petrochemical complex in Sendai. A massive blaze
also engulfed an oil refinery near Tokyo.
Nearly 24 hours after the first, massive quake struck just
under 400 kilometres (250 miles) northeast of Tokyo,
aftershocks were still rattling the region, including a
strong 6.8 magnitude tremor on Saturday.
The US Geological Survey said more than 100 aftershocks had
hit the area.
Japan sits on the “Pacific Ring of Fire” and Tokyo is in one
of its most dangerous areas, where three continental plates
are slowly grinding against each other, building up enormous
The government has long warned of the likelihood that a
devastating magnitude-eight quake will strike within the
next 30 years in the Kanto plains, home to Tokyo’s vast
|Kadhafi troops advance as EU, US
condemns Libyan leader
|NEAR RAS LANUF, Libya (AFP) - Libyan fighter jets bombed
anti-Kadhafi forces Friday as the European Union called on
the Libyan leader to go and Barack Obama urged the world to
keep up the pressure.
“Colonel Khadafi must relinquish power immediately,” said a
European Union statement from Brussels at the end of an
emergency summit on the crisis.
“His regime has lost all legitimacy and is no longer an
interlocutor for the EU,” it added.
The 27-nation bloc expressed “deep concern about attacks
against civilians, including from the air.
But it also stressed the need for “a clear legal basis and
support from the region”, reflecting divisions over the
advisability of military intervention.
The legal basis sought by EU states would be a UN Security
Council resolution authorising action.
The statement also called for a urgent summit between the
EU, the African Union and the Arab League to discuss the
crisis. French President Nicolas Sarkozy said that would
take place “in the coming weeks.”
The Arab League is due to meet in Cairo on Saturday. The
African Union rejected military intervention in Libya, at a
meeting in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Fridy.
There was no mention in the final EU statement of calls from
Britain and France for a no-fly zone over Libya -- let alone
French President Nicolas Sarkozy proposal for “targeted
action” against Kadhafi.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel had made it clear she was
“fundamentally sceptical” on the question of any military
In Washington, President Barack Obama told reporters Friday:
“Across the board, we are slowly tightening the noose on
“He is more and more isolated internationally both through
sanctions as well as an arms embargo,” Obama said.
But he admitted he was worried about the threat Kadhafi
still posed given the weapons at his disposal and reports
that he had been hiring mercenaries.
“We’re going to have to continue to apply pressure,” Obama
said, as the US Treasury Department hit another nine Kadhafi
associates with sanctions, including his wife Safia Farkash
and his defence minister.
The US has already frozen $32 billion in Libyan assets.
Obama also announced he would appoint envoys to meet the
Also in Washington, Libya’s former ambassador to the UN,
Abdel Rahman Shalgam, said Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton would meet Mahmoud Jibril, the Libyan opposition
National Council’s foreign affairs chief, in Paris on
In Libya itself however, Kadhafi’s fighter jets bombed rebel
forces, as his forces tried to press the iniative won in
Rebels said fighting had flared again in the key eastern oil
hub and frontline town of Ras Lanuf, after most of them were
driven out in a fierce battle on Thursday after holding it
for a week.
In the midst of a heavy-weapons duel, a warplane dropped
bombs on a rebel checkpoint 10 kilometres (six miles) east
of the town and on a nearby oil refinery, but no casualties
An AFP reporter saw flames and a massive plume of thick
black smoke rising from the refinery, the second facility to
be hit in the week’s fighting.
A second strike hit rebel positions about 15 kilometres (10
miles) east of town.
Pro-Kadhafi state television reported: “The population of
Ras Lanuf is overjoyed after the town was purged of armed
gangs backed by Al-Qaeda.”
There was no reliable casualty figure from Friday’s
fighting, but an AFP reporter saw at least five bodies,
while doctors said 10 people were killed on Thursday.
Earlier, rebels fired a salvo of at least 12 Katyushas from
a rocket launcher mounted on the back of a truck, and what
rebels said were loyalist army shells and Grad rockets were
heard exploding further west.
Volunteer medics in Libya called for international help.
A few kilometres east of Ras Lanuf, Doctor Awad el-Ghweiry
feared his makeshift clinic would not be able to cope.
“Where are all the international organisations?” he
demanded, as he and his colleagues treated three rebels and
|Dalai Lama offers prayers for
DHARAMSHALA, India (AFP) - Tibetan spiritual leader the
Dalai Lama Saturday voiced ‘sadness’ over a massive
earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan and said he
would pray for the victims.
“The Dalai Lama expressed his shock and sadness on hearing
the news of yesterday’s earthquake and subsequent tsunami in
Japan,” his office said in a statement posted on his
official website www.dalailama.com.
The spiritual leader’s reaction came as the Japanese
government said it believed more than 1,000 people had been
killed by Friday’s 8.9-magnitude temblor and tsunami which
devastated swathes of Japan.
The Dalai Lama, who has a huge following among Japan’s
Buddhists, in a message to Japanese prime minister Naoto Kan
said he was “grateful” for the country’s high preparedness
which prevented an even larger loss of life.
“We must all be grateful that the Japanese government’s
disaster preparedness measures prevented the death and
destruction from being much worse,” the 1989 Nobel Peace
Prize winner said.
“His holiness offered his prayers for those who have lost
their lives and offered his sympathy and condolences to
their families and others affected by it,” the statement
The 75-year-old Dalai Lama, who is a frequent visitor to
Japan, fled his homeland in 1959 following a failed
anti-Chinese uprising and set up base in the northern Indian
hilltop town of Dharamshala.
The statement said Dharamshala was organising a remembrance
where a special Buddhist religious chant would be recited
for the victims and survivors of the disaster.
“Such a recitation may not only be helpful for those who
have lost their precious lives, but may also help prevent
further disasters in the future,” the Dalai Lama told his
followers in Japan.
The statement came two days after the Dalai Lama announced
he would step down as political head of the exiled Tibetan
government, but continue to push the Tibetan cause in his
key role as its spiritual figurehead.
|World tightening noose on Kadhafi:
WASHINGTON (AFP) - US President Barack
Obama warned Friday the world was ‘tightening the noose’ on
Moamer Kadhafi, but admitted he was ‘concerned’the Libyan
strongman could thwart rebels battling to oust him.
Obama announced he would appoint an envoy to Libyan
opposition forces as part of a bid to “change the balance”
of the military situation in Libya, and warned the world had
an obligation to avoid a Rwanda-style massacre.
The president also defended his efforts to date to oust
Kadhafi, amid criticism that he has been too slow or not
offered sufficient leadership, adding he was gauging support
for a no-fly zone with regional powers.
“Across the board, we are slowly tightening the noose on
Kadhafi,” Obama said in a White House news conference
scheduled to discuss rising energy prices but dominated by
the Libyan revolt and the Japanese tsunami tragedy.
“He is more and more isolated internationally both through
sanctions as well as an arms embargo,” Obama said.
The president also gave an insight into evolving US policy
on Kadhafi’s crackdown on Libyan opposition forces and his
capacity to hang on, edging towards more overt material and
political support for opposition forces.
“I am concerned about it. Kadhafi has a stash of weapons, he
not only has some troops that remain loyal to him but there
are also reports that he’s also been hiring mercenaries.”
“We’re going to have to continue to apply pressure,” Obama
said, adding that the world had to try to “change the
balance” militarily on the ground in Libya as well as in
Kadhafi’s inner circle.
To that end, the US Treasury Department hit another nine top
officials and Kadhafi family members with sanctions,
including the defense minister and the Libyan leader’s wife
Under an earlier set of measures, Washington had frozen $32
billion in Libyan assets.
Obama gave his most comprehensive statement yet on a day
when rebels and forces loyal to Kadhafi battled around the
frontline town of Ras Lanuf.
The president did not say specifically whether the United
States and its allies had yet considered whether to arm
opposition forces as some of ideological opponents in
Washington have urged.
“We have determined that it is appropriate for us to assign
a representative whose specific job is to interact with the
opposition and determine ways that we can further help
them,” Obama said.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will meet Monday in Paris
with Mahmoud Jibril, the opposition National Council’s
foreign affairs chief, former Libyan ambassador Abdel Rahman
Shalgam told reporters on Friday.
Washington has already said it would soon send humanitarian
aid teams to rebel-held areas of eastern Libya, but warned
the move should not be seen as military intervention.
It has also been seeking to learn about the make-up and
capacity of Libya’s various opposition groups before
deciding what kind of support to offer.
Despite US reluctance so far to embark on imposing a no-fly
zone over Libya, Obama did hint that international forces
could spring into action in the event of any looming
“Not only the United States but the international community
has an obligation to do what we can to prevent a repeat of
something like what happened in the Balkans in the ‘90s,
what occurred in Rwanda.”
The president said that a desire to stop civilian killings
was one reason the West had started continuous aerial
surveillance over Libya.
“We’re going to have to look at what develops on the ground
on a case-by-case basis. I don’t want to generalize right
now and say that’s what’s happening and we’re prepared to
“But we have sent a clear warning to the Kadhafi government
that they will be held accountable, particularly when it
comes to assaulting civilians.”
European leaders also ramped up pressure on Kadhafi,
agreeing to a dialogue with his opponents and to protect
Libyan civilians “by all necessary means” but stopping short
of issuing an outright military threat.
Obama made clear it was in the national interests of the
United States for Kadhafi, a foe of Washington for most of
the last 40 years, to be gone.
“I believe that Kadhafi is on the wrong side of history. I
believe that the Libyan people are anxious for freedom and
the removal of somebody who has suppressed them for decades
He also took time to assess the wider impact of the changes
sweeping the Middle East, urging leaders to seize the “great
opportunity” presented by the current turmoil to embrace
political and economic reforms.
|Death threats for actress who ‘shamed’
LAHORE, Pakistan (AFP) - A well-known
Pakistani actress Saturday said she had received death
threats from militants after appearing on the Indian
equivalent of hit reality television show “Big Brother”.
Veena Malik, 27, incurred the wrath of hardline Islamic
clerics for her performance on “Big Boss”, during which she
indulged in several intimate scenes with Indian actor Ashmit
Patel that included massaging his head and neck.
Clerics accused her of shaming Pakistan in rival India and
she also received a letter threatening to “punish” her.
“I am quite shocked after receiving this letter. First I got
only verbal threats but now it is in writing,” Malik told
AFP by telephone from India, where she is hosting cricket
World Cup show “Big Toss”.
“Security is a concern and the Pakistani government is
responsible for my and my family’s security.
I hope that the government will provide me that security,”
The actress said people with tight security details had been
killed in Pakistan, referring to the January assassination
of Punjab governor Salman Taseer over his opposition to a
draconian blasphemy law.
“What can I say except that I have firm belief in God and
life and death is in his hand,” she said.
Malik said she would return to Pakistan despite the threats.
“To live in my country is my right.
I am a daughter of this soil. I guarantee that I will come
back to Pakistan and will live in my own country,” she said.
|Relations between Sri
Lanka and Germany to be strengthened
|Professor G. L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs,
had discussions with Jan Karan, Senator for Economy and
Trade of the City of Hamburg and Juergen Klimke, Member of
the German Parliament, on a wide range of issues relating to
the bilateral relationship between Sri Lanka and Germany.
Jens Plotner, Ambassador of Germany, also participated in
Prof. Peiris referred to the very useful interaction between
President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the German delegation at
President’s House in Kandy.
The Minister thanked the German government for assistance,
worth approximately Rs. 36,500 million in dry rations and
drinking water, which had been made available in the
aftermath of the recent floods.
He also noted that the number of German tourists visiting
Sri Lanka had increased by more than 70 per cent last year.
Senator Karan indicated his readiness to assist with a
variety of collaborative programmes between the countries,
taking advantage of the circumstances now prevailing in Sri
Lanka after the eradication of terrorism.
Senator Karan and Parliamentarian Klimke, assisted by
Ambassador Plotner, discussed with Prof. Peiris appropriate
fields for co-operation. Minister Peiris suggested that
skills development, with particular reference to vocational
training and the German experience of learning and working
simultaneously, the services sector and value addition into
agricultural products are suitable areas.
Juergen Klimke referred to the productive interaction which
had taken place during the recent visit of the German
Parliamentary delegation to Sri Lanka, and said that an
invitation had been extended to Sri Lankan Parliamentarians
to visit Germany this year.
The two sides agreed that strengthening of relationships
between the business communities of the two countries should
be a priority for this year. Senator Karan and Klimke met
with a cross section of business leaders ahead of his
address to the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.
They said that the East Asiatic Association, based in
Hamburg, was a useful institution for strengthening contact
with the business sector in Sri Lanka, and that they would
associate themselves with appropriate initiatives in this
Three-day Jaffna music
festival begins on march 25
The Jaffna Music Festival, a Celebration of Traditional
Folk Art Forms will unfold in a folk-village setting from
March 25 to 27.
Folk music and dancing are wonderful expressions of a
country’s rich tradition and diverse culture although very
rarely would one pay attention to them. Many folk musicians
across the country struggle to keep their traditions alive
in the face of falling numbers and due to lack of incentives
and recognition from the society, modern day folk musicians
have to engage in preserving these arts while struggling for
their own survival.
With the objective of bringing these unique Sri Lankan folk
and traditional music and dance forms into the limelight,
Sewalanka Foundation together with Concerts Norway and
Norwegian Embassy will present Jaffna Music Festival, a folk
themed event from March 25 to 27, 2011 in the city of
The Festival unfolds in a folk-village camp setting, where
different artistes, both local and international, will lead
simultaneous performances on 3-4 stages from Friday to
Sunday 10am to 3pm followed by a main stage performance 4 pm
– 10 pm daily.
The Festival will bring together an assortment of
traditional folk music and dance performances from across
the island, with groups representing all ethnic groups. With
a combination of folk, fusion folk and traditional music,
the festival will present an exciting line up of 23 Sri
Lankan and five international folk groups from India, Nepal,
Palestine, South Africa and Norway. Some of which are:
Nishantha Rampitiye Troupe: Kohomba Kankariya
In Kandy, where Kohomba Kankariya evolved, Nishan Rampitiye
family line has been performing this art for generations.
Well known for Kohomba Kankariya and Bali, the group has
around 50 performing artistes. It takes nearly five years or
more to arrange a full Kohomba Kankariya performance - the
most difficult point is to scour the professional dancers
who know the procedures well and the Kankariya itself.
The Khohomba Kankariya contains a number of episodes around
an incident. Kohomba Kankariya ritual is performed to ensure
freedom from diseases, invoke blessings and for the people
to live in prosperity.
The blessings are expected to manifest only in the location
that Kohomba Kankariya is enacted, so that if any others
want such blessings, they too are compelled to enact Kohomba
Kankariya in their own areas, thereby ensuring more people
would make offerings to please the ‘Yakka’ (devil)
separately for their well-being!
The academy is very proud to win national and international
level awards and the Presidential Award for ‘Skillfull Wes
Natum Artiste of 2009 – 2010’.
Tradition and Culture of Muslim Inducing Association
(TACOMIA): Kali Kambattam
The members of TACOMIA live in Akkareipattu, in the Eastern
coast of Sri Lanka. The group is well known among the Muslim
community for their distinctive style of performing music
with sticks. This style is known as ‘Kali Kambattam’, which
refers to ‘beat and play’. The knowledge and art of
performing the play are handed down in traditional families
to the present generation.
The roots of their play style can be traced back to about
300 years ago. This tradition is very popular in every
Muslim community. The band over the years has played more
than 30 shows to wide and varied audiences around the
The group performs a wide variety of folk tales in the form
of singing and dancing with sticks. The folk group’s play,
singing and dancing style is Saudi Arabian in origin. This
scenario forms the base and all surrounding sequences are
acted in various manner using diverse symbols, costumes
accompanied by rhythmic singing and drumming with sticks.
According to M. H. Musamil, leader of the group, the younger
generation in the Eastern coast shows a big interest in
joining the group and learning this unique tradition.
This is one of the Koothu practiced amongst Tamils in the
Chulipuram area. It is now going to be performed again after
nearly twenty years. The story of Papurabaha is connected to
the legend Mahabharata.
Papravaham goes on to tell the story of the great fight
between father and son, Arjuna the great archer in the epic
Mahabharath and Papravahan, who captured a horse his father
released during a Yaga (offering to the gods). Paravahan
wins the battle killing his father, but ultimately due to
the intervention of the gods Arjuna is revived back to life.
The men perform to the sound of the thalam ringing with an
annaviyar singing, backed by sallari and mathalam. The
performance usually takes place in a circular space in the
kovil compound. The audience is seated on the three sides of
the performing space. The performers do not use modern
facilities such as loudspeakers. This koothu is performed
only during the temple periods.
Almost a century ago, it was said that real horses and
elephants were brought in during the performance to add
grandeur to the performance.
The Manganiar Group is known for their traditional Indian
folk music, and seen as some of the most sophisticated
musicians of the Western Rajasthan. The folk music group
come from the district of Barmer in Rajastan, also called
the land of kings, and famous for their folk music, and
generations of professional musicians.
They are seen as the descendants of the Rajputs – the Kings
of Rajasthan, in the way that their songs are passed on from
generation to generation, making them effectively keepers of
the history of the desert.
Their songs are about all parts of life; love, weddings,
birth, or any family festivity. Amongst the instruments they
play, is the remarkable bowed instrument the ‘kamayacha’,
with its big, circular resonator, giving out an impressive
deep, booming sound.
The Manganiar Group is: Nehru Khan (vocal), Gazi Khan
(harmonium), Bhugra Kahn (khartal), Bhuta Kahn (dholak) and
Deen Mohammad (kamayacha).
|Agreement signed to build 150-bed
hospital at Dickoya with Indian assistance
agreement was signed on Wednesday, March 9, in the Ministry
of External Affairs, South Block, New Delhi for awarding the
work related to construction of 150 bed hospital at Dickoya
near Hatton in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. The
Agreement was signed by Shri T. S. Tirumurti, Joint
Secretary (BSM) on behalf of Ministry of External Affairs,
Government of India and Shri. K. R. Tirumurahan, Managing
Director, Green Valley’s Shelters (P) Limited, Chennai.
The hospital will be constructed under grant of Government
of India. Government of India has allocated INR 47.27 crores
for setting up of the hospital. Hospital Services
Consultation Corporation Ltd (HSCC) India is the Project
Management Consultant for the project. The project is
expected to be completed in 22 months.
Recognising the need for establishment of a well equipped
general hospital at Dickoya near Hatton the Government of
India agreed to render assistance to Government of Sri
Lanka. The establishment of a new hospital in the Central
Province in Sri Lanka will augment the facilities in the
existing hospital and provide health services to a large
number of people of Indian origin living in this area. India
has continued to extend extensive assistance to the Indian
Origin Tamils living in that area especially in the area of
education, health, housing and public transportation.
|Sajith helps temples with Sasunata
Sajith Premadasa, MP for Hambantota district and Chairman
of the Janasuwaya Development Foundation, has initiated a
project named Sasunata Aruna to assist and support Buddhist
temples in commemoration of the 2,600 years Sambudhatwa
Sajith premadasa donating Rs. 50,000 to the chief incumbent
of the Kapugampotha Temple, Pallemulane Saranankara Thera in
the Weeraketiya Division of Hambantota district.
|Lions Club of Mutwal South 306 B1
provides shelter and self-employment
the Lions Club of Mutwal South 306 B1, celebrated the joy of
giving by contributing a newly constructed house and
vegetable vending cart. The district governor Lion
Jeyavatsalan, MJF, handed them over to the respective
families. The house worth Rs. 4,65,000 was given to Mrs.
Shanthi Mathiazhaghan and family in Hendala, Wattala, in
Kurundhuwathe area and the cart to another needy family by
the club. Present in the photograph are past Lion District
Governors S. Sivapadha Sunderam and Sivanadhan, vice
governor lion Piyantha Fernando, club president Lion
Thirukeswaren, club treasurer Lion K. Ganeshamoorthy,
Director Lion Ashok Kumar, Secretary Lion Shanmuganathan,
and the rest of the club’s fraternity
|Emerald releases official SLC shirt
collection as we take on the world
edition collection now available in finer outlets
The much awaited specialised shirt worn by the Sri Lanka
cricket team as they take on the world, designed and
produced by Emerald was released to the market this week.
Emerald, the official formal wear provider to Sri Lanka
cricket has been a pioneer in the shirt industry offering
some of the best quality shirts to the Sri Lankan and
“The exclusive cricket shirt collections, first introduced
by Emerald for the Sri Lanka Australia tour in August 2010,
has been an astonishing success and sold out within a few
days,” commented the Marketing Manager Emerald International
He went on to say, “Our goal is to have the Sri Lanka
Cricket team looking very professional and fashionable off
the field as they take on the world, especially since we are
a nation known the world over for the high quality apparels
This new world cup collection has been done in symbolising
national integrity coupled with the great game of cricket.
“We have made a very limited number of shirts from this
limited collection available to the general public through
our finer dealers island wide in a variety of colours,” he
The fabric is a unique Royal Oxford which is known to be
lustrous, textured and regal, and originated in England in
the late 19th Century, similar to International Cricket.
Thus the fabric has also been selected to symbolise the
history of the game.
The embroidery on the pocket signifies wicket stumps
ordained in the colours of the Sri Lanka flag, namely
Yellow, Green Maroon and orange to bring out the patriotism
of the sport. The placket of the shirts bears a red leather
cricket ball with vertical line embroidery symbolising the
game of cricket and classy finish. Each shirt has been
customised to serve as a true memorabilia this season.”
|U.S. gives $4 million more in
Emergency Food Aid
The United States Agency for
International Development (USAID) , the development agency
of the U.S. Government, is to donate $4,200,000
(approximately 462 million Sri Lanka Rupees) of food aid to
support the return of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in
Northern Sri Lanka. Consisting of wheat flour, lentils, and
vegetable oil, USAID’s second shipment of food aid this year
will be distributed by the United Nations World Food
Programme and will meet the needs of up to 371,000
This donation to support the northern IDPs comes in addition
to the flood relief assistance of $ 2.9 million (319 million
Sri Lanka Rupees) given by the United States Government
earlier this year which supported families in areas severely
affected by the heavy rains such as Mannar, Trincomalee,
Vavuniya, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa.
To date, the U.S. has provided nearly $33 million (3.6
billion rupees) in food aid to Sri Lankans during 2010 and
the first months of 2011.
|Electricity scheme for 48 Estate
families in Kalutara
Power and Energy Minister
Patali Champika Ranawaka erected the first lamp post
recently to inaugurate the Nainna, Hidaraliyawatte
electricity scheme in Dodangoda, Kalutara.
The minister has instructed officials to provide these
residents electricity within a month.
This scheme was constructed at a cost of Rs.7 million, and
would cater to the electricity needs of around 200, from 48
families. This scheme will no doubt be an asset to the daily
activities of these residents who have never had the
privilege of electricity before.