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Kasturi Chellaraja resigns as Hemas Holdings Group CEO

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Hemas Holdings, a leading conglomerate, today announced the resignation of Kasturi Chellaraja, the Group CEO, effective March 30, 2024.

Ms. Chellaraja, has served as the Group’s Chief Executive Officer since 2020 and played a pivotal role in Hemas’ growth and success during her tenure.

Kasturi Chellaraja’s contributions have significantly contributed to the transformation of Hemas into a purpose-led organization that has strengthened its market positions in the Consumer, Healthcare, and Mobility sectors over the last three years.

The decision to resign was driven by Kasturi’s desire to explore new opportunities for growth while continuing to contribute to Sri Lanka. Kasturi has embarked on a new chapter in her career by accepting a prestigious position with a renowned global corporation with diverse business interests. In this new role she will spearhead the global organisation’s expansion efforts throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Kasturi will however continue to serve on the Hemas Holdings Board as a Non-Executive Director, and she expressed deep gratitude for the support of the board, colleagues, and employees during her time at Hemas.

Hemas Holdings’ Board of Directors has initiated a comprehensive search for a new CEO to lead the company into its next phase of growth. The current management team and executive leadership will ensure stability and continuity in day-to-day operations during this transition period.

Hussein Esufally, Chairman, Hemas Holdings, expressed his gratitude for Kasturi’s contributions and acknowledged and respected her decision to step down. He emphasized that the Board is committed to ensuring a smooth handover and continuing Hemas’ growth trajectory.

Hemas Holdings remains steadfast in its purpose to empower families and aspire for a better tomorrow. The company will provide updates as the CEO search progresses.

(dailymirror.lk)

(Except for the headline, this story, originally published by dailymirror.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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Heavy rains across the island

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Due to South-West monsoon conditions which are gradually establishing across the island, prevailing showery and windy conditions will continue further, says the Met. Department.

Showers or thundershowers is to occur at times in Western, Sabaragamuwa, Central, North-western and Southern provinces and in Mannar district.

Showers or thundershowers will occur at several places elsewhere on the island, it said.

Heavy showers above 100mm are likely at some places in Western, Sabaragamuwa and North-western provinces and in Galle, Matara, Kandy, Nuwara-Eliya and Mannar districts.

Fairly strong winds about 30-40 kmph can be expected at times over the island, according to the Meteorology Department.

General public is kindly requested to take adequate precautions to minimize damages caused by temporary localized strong winds and lightning during thundershowers.

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Waymba Governor using 3 official residences!

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It is reported that the Governor of the North West Province – Mr. Nasir Ahmed is using two more official residences in addition to the one he is entitled to as the governor.

According to reports, Mr. Ahmed is using the governor’s official residence located at the Kurunegala lake round. In addition, he is also said to be using the official residence of the Kurunegala mayor as well as an official house belonging to the North West Ministry of Agriculture.

Provincial Council sources also state that the previous governor – Mr. Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena too had used other official residences other than the one he was entitled to. However, the governors appointed before that, have not done so.

The occupancy of official quarters not entitled to the relevant official, is illegal and violates government circulars. 

(Souce : Aruna)

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Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi killed in helicopter crash, official says

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Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and his foreign minister were killed in a helicopter crash in mountainous terrain and icy weather, an Iranian official said on Monday, after search teams located the wreckage in East Azerbaijan province.

“President Raisi, the foreign minister and all the passengers in the helicopter were killed in the crash,” the senior Iranian official told Reuters, asking not to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter.

Iran’s Mehr news agency confirmed the deaths, reporting that “all passengers of the helicopter carrying the Iranian president and foreign minister were martyred”.

An Iranian official earlier told Reuters the helicopter carrying Raisi and Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian was completely burned in the crash on Sunday.

State TV reported that images from the site showed the aircraft slammed into a mountain peak, although there was no official word on the cause of the crash.

State news agency IRNA said Raisi was flying in a U.S.-made Bell 212 helicopter.

Raisi, 63, was elected president in 2021, and since taking office has ordered a tightening of morality laws, overseen a bloody crackdown on anti-government protests and pushed hard in nuclear talks with world powers.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who holds ultimate power with a final say on foreign policy and Iran’s nuclear programme, had earlier sought to reassure Iranians, saying there would be no disruption to state affairs.

Rescue teams fought blizzards and difficult terrain through the night to reach the wreckage in the early hours of Monday.

“With the discovery of the crash site, no signs of life have been detected among the helicopter’s passengers,” the head of Iran’s Red Crescent, Pirhossein Kolivand, told state TV.

Earlier, the national broadcaster had stopped all regular programming to show prayers being held for Raisi across the country.

In the early hours of Monday, it showed a rescue team, wearing bright jackets and head torches, huddled around a GPS device as they searched a pitch-black mountainside on foot in a blizzard.
Several countries expressed concern and offered assistance in any rescue.

The White House said U.S. President Joe Biden had been briefed on reports about the crash. China said it was deeply concerned. The European Union offered emergency satellite mapping technology.

The crash comes at a time of growing dissent within Iran over an array of political, social and economic crises. Iran’s clerical rulers face international pressure over Tehran’s disputed nuclear programme and its deepening military ties with Russia during the war in Ukraine.

Since Iran’s ally Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, provoking Israel’s assault on Gaza, conflagrations involving Iran-aligned groups have erupted throughout the Middle East.

In Iran’s dual political system, split between the clerical establishment and the government, it is Raisi’s 85-year-old mentor Khamenei, supreme leader since 1989, who holds decision-making power on all major policies.
For years many have seen Raisi as a strong contender to succeed Khamenei, who has endorsed Raisi’s main policies.

Raisi’s victory in a closely managed election in 2021 brought all branches of power under the control of hardliners, after eight years when the presidency had been held by pragmatist Hassan Rouhani and a nuclear deal negotiated with powers including Washington.

However, Raisi’s standing may have been dented by widespread protests against clerical rule and a failure to turn around Iran’s economy, hamstrung by Western sanctions.

Raisi had been at the Azerbaijani border on Sunday to inaugurate the Qiz-Qalasi Dam, a joint project. Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev, who said he had bid a “friendly farewell” to Raisi earlier in the day, offered assistance in the rescue.

Coming soon: Get the latest news and expert analysis about the state of the global economy with Reuters Econ World. Sign up here.

(Reuters)

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