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Money laundering at SLRC?

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Though Minister Bandula Gunawardana said that the agreement reached with Lyca Group to lease out the airtime of ‘Channel Eye’ owned by the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC) can be terminated with one month’s notice, it has been leased for a period of three months, internal sources at the SLRC said.

A company with a three-letter name has already given Rs.50 million to the SLRC and the amount has already been spent.

Out of this, Rs.25 million have been spent to settle the outstanding electricity bill of the SLRC.

Meanwhile, a cheque for another Rs.25 million has been given by the same company to be cleared in the future.

It was reported that Dr. Prasad Samarasinghe, a dual citizen who holds both the SLRC Chairman and Director General posts, has prepared all the arrangements in this regard.

One of the major accusations levelled against Lyca Group all over the world is money laundering and serious doubts have been raised whether more money has been given to SLRC to launder money.

Meanwhile, the SLRC Chairman has informed the staff to be ready to give the amount of Rs.50 million back to the same company.

However, Prasad had leased out Channel Eye to Lyca last February when a tender was called and two applications have been submitted to lease it out.

It was said that Lyca Group was not among the institutions that submitted the applications.

Nethra TV given instead of Channel Eye

Although Dr. Samarasinghe had informed the Minister and others that Channel Eye had been leased out, it has now been revealed that Lyca has actually been given the frequencies of Nethra TV, which covers the entire country.

The reason for doing so is that the frequencies of Channel Eye do not cover the entire country.

Samarasinghe escapes to China

Meanwhile, it was said that Dr. Prasad Samarasinghe left the country last night (15) in order to alleviate the situation in the event the relevant agreement could not be approved by the Cabinet.

He has gone abroad for trivial reasons such as signing contracts for some free video programmes given by Chinese TV.

Although previously the head of the programme and the head of the unit related to the programme usually participate in these events, this time Dr. Prasad and his close associate Mothilal Hiswella (Head of the International Affairs Unit) have attended the event much to the displeasure of the SLRC workers.

The absurd situation is that even now the programme facilities are available at the Chinese Embassy in Sri Lanka which is about 500 meters away from the SLRC premises. The agreement could have been signed online though the two officers have left for China to sign it.

Sources from China said that the Chinese television has organised this tour on the strong demand of the SLRC.

It was said that Prasad and Mothilal have gone abroad despite Sumedha, the head of the programme, and Vajira Kumari Withanage, the head of the dubbing department, having expressed their opposition to this.

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Russian Embassy issues statement on controversial night event in Unawatuna

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The Russian Embassy in Colombo has issued a statement condemning all forms of racial discrimination and nationalism in response to the recent controversy surrounding a planned night event in Unawatuna.

The statement clarified that the event, organized with a “dress-code: white” theme, was planned by a group of entrepreneurs.

The Embassy acknowledged that, according to unconfirmed data, the main promoter and the bar owners who agreed to host the party have been identified as Russian citizens.

However, amidst confusion and concerns over entry conditions, the organizers issued apologies, clarifying that their intentions were not to cause harm, and subsequently called off the event.

The Russian Embassy emphasized Russia’s firm stance against such injustices and expressed a commitment to combating them.

Additionally, the embassy urged all Russian citizens visiting or residing in Sri Lanka to strictly adhere to the country’s laws and respect local customs.

The statement aimed to address the controversy and reinforce the importance of promoting inclusivity and cultural sensitivity.


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TM Dilshan granted Australian citizenship

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Former Sri Lankan cricketer Tillakaratne Dilshan has been granted Australian citizenship, confirmed by Australian MP Jason Wood in a social media post.

Dilshan, renowned for his explosive batting style, played a pivotal role in numerous victories for the Sri Lankan cricket team throughout his career. 

The 47-year-old’s acquisition of Australian citizenship marks a new chapter in his life post-retirement from professional cricket.

“Today’s citizenship ceremony was made even more special with the attendance of Tillakaratne Dilshan, a former Sri Lankan cricketer and captain of the Sri Lanka national cricket team.

“Dilshan is regarded as the best Sri Lankan player in run-chases in ODI history. 

He also holds the record for being the top run-scorer in the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup with 500 runs and scored a century against England in the semi-final. 

Additionally, he was part of the Sri Lankan team that won the 2014 ICC World Twenty20,” posted MP Jason Wood on social media.

MP Jason Wood, welcoming Dilshan as a new Australian citizen and local resident, expressed hope that the veteran would consider joining a local team.

“It was great to hear that his daughter Resandi is following in her father’s footsteps,” he added.

Tillakaratne Dilshan amassed over 10,000 runs from 330 ODIs since his one-day international debut in 1999 against Zimbabwe. 

His Test career spanned 87 matches, during which he accumulated 5492 runs, including a high-score of 193. 

In 80 T20I matches, Dilshan made 1889 runs, featuring one century and 13 half-centuries.

Renowned for his unorthodox style, including the innovative scoop shot, Dilshan proved to be an extremely effective and versatile batsman across formats throughout his career.

Source: ABP News Bureau

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Chinese woman arrested for Financial Fraud

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A 52-year-old Chinese women has been arrested by the police for her alleged involvement in financial fraud amounting to nearly Rs. 8.4 million.

The female suspect was apprehended in the Kollupitiya police division on Saturday, following investigations initiated based on a complaint received by the Colombo Fraud Investigation Bureau on January 31.

According to the police, the arrested individual had reportedly obtained Rs. 8.4 million in total from multiple persons. 

She allegedly claimed that the funds were for a business venture and assured the amount would be returned.

The Colombo Fraud Investigation Bureau is conducting further investigations into the case to gather more details about the nature of the fraud and the individuals affected by it. 

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