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State Literary Awards Ceremony held

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The State Literary Awards Ceremony 2022, organized annually to give due accolades to the Sri Lankan literati, was held in grandeur at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH), Colombo this afternoon (28) under the patronage of President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Forty (40) State Literary Awards and 03 “Sahitya Ratna” Awards were presented at the 65th State Literary Awards Ceremony which was organized by the State Literary Advisory Council, the Sri Lanka Arts Council, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Ministry of Buddhasasana, Religious and Cultural Affairs.  

Prof. Chandrasiri Palliaguru (Sinhala Medium), Senior Prof. Kamani Jayasekara (English Medium) and T. Gnanasekaran (Tamil Medium) were honoured by the President with the “Sahityaratna” Lifetime Award.

The award for the best independent Sinhala novel was received by Author Eric Ilayapparachchi for the ‘Nakula Muni’ novel, the award for the best independent English novel was received by Author Ms. Premani Amarasinghe for ‘Footprints’ while the award for the best independent Tamil novel was presented to Sivalingam Aruran for ‘Adurasalei’ novel.

The Souvenir released for the State Literary Awards Ceremony 2022 was presented to President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

State Literacy Board President Ven. Rambukana Siddartha Thera, Buddhasasana, Religious and Cultural Affairs Minister Vidura Wickramanayake, Secretary to the Buddhasasana, Religious and Cultural Affairs Ministry Somaratne Vidanapathirana, Cultural Affairs Director Tharani Anoja Gamage, Professor J. B. Dissanayake, Professor Sunil Ariyaratne, Professor Praneeth Abeysundara participated in the occasion.

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Popular Indian singer Pankaj Udhas no more

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Popular ghazal and playback singer – Pankaj Udhas has passed away aged 72. 

The Udhas family confirmed his death on Monday was due to a prolonged illness.

Taking to Instagram, Pankaj Udhas’ daughter Nayaab shared a statement on Instagram which read, “With a heavy heart, we are saddened to inform you of the sad demise of Padmashri Pankaj Udhas on 26th February 2024 due to a prolonged illness.”

He had passed away around 11am at the Breach Candy hospital, Indian media reports citing a family source.

 His last rites will be held on Tuesday. 

Pankaj is survived by wife Farida Udhas, daughters Nayaab and Reva Udhas, and brothers Nirmal and Manhar Udhas, who are also singers.

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Laugfs Gas prices to remain unchanged too

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LAUGFS Gas PLC has also decided not to revise the prices of domestic LP gas cylinders for the month of February 2024.

Accordingly, the current prices are as follows:
12.5kg cylinder – Rs. 4,740 
5kg cylinder – Rs. 1,900

The announcement comes hours after Litro Gas Lanka stating that they will not revise gas prices this month.

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Actress Poonam Pandey passes away

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Actress and model Poonam Pandey has passed away last night (Feb. 01) due to cervical cancer at the age of 32, according to her team who posted the news of her death on her Instagram handle.

Poonam made her feature film debut with Nasha, an erotic drama that was released in 2013. She made cameo appearances in films such as Love Is Poison (Kannada) and Aa Gaya Hero (Hindi). The actress also headlined the Telugu movie Malini & Co and The Journey of Karma.

She was also part of the television reality competition series Lock Upp.

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