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No train tickets needed this evening?

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The Sri Lanka Railway Stations Masters Union is poised to commence several trade union actions from this evening (14  June).

They are protesting against recruitment issues, among others.

Among the trade union action planned, the decision to not issue tickets this evening has been trending.

This would mean passengers will be able to travel without tickets, the railway department would incur a loss of revenue, as well as a disruption would occur in accepting parcels and delivering them.

The Union’s chairman Sumedha Somarathna said that management of the railway and its staff, acceptance and distribution of parcels, issuing tickets and providing revenue reports to the Railway department are among their duties.

He added that a final decision on their trade union action would be taken this evening.

The Union’s general secretary Sanjaya Jayasundera said that they have requested a written answer to their grievances by 2 pm today.

Though the locomotive operators, controllers, station masters and operation managers belong to the same cadre, a special cabinet paper has been approved to promote the locomotive operators, controllers and operation managers every five years. The station masters request they too be granted the same frequency of promotions, adding that at present it is every 10 years and that it is unfair to them.

He further stated that there are 1372 posts of railway masters and yet, only 900 are filled at present; the number could decline further in the next two years and the Union wants the vacancies filled as soon as possible.

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Prasanna urges Ranil to declare candidacy promptly

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During a spirited rally in Kadawatha today, Minister Prasanna Ranatunga passionately urged President Ranil Wickremesinghe to promptly announce his candidacy for the presidency within the upcoming week.

“The people of Gampaha eagerly await your decision. Please do not delay any further in declaring your intention to contest,” Minister Ranatunga urged with conviction.

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Harin awards Rs. 1M to Olympic athletes

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Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Harin Fernando has awarded financial sponsorship cheques of Rs. 1 million each to six athletes participating in the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. 

Additionally, prize money totaling Rs. 1280 lakh was distributed to athletes and coaches who secured medals and top-eight positions in the last Asian and Paralympic Games in Hangzhou, China.

Young sprinter Tharushi was among the highly rewarded, receiving Rs. 15 million for her Asian Games gold medal along with another Rs. 2.5 million for her relay medal.

Minister Fernando emphasized the significance of encouraging athletes even amidst the country’s financial crisis. 

He expressed his commitment to promoting sports and highlighted the importance of discipline in representing Sri Lanka. He urged athletes to dedicate themselves to achieving victory, meeting the high expectations of the nation.

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Former INSSSL Director General Asanka Abeygunasekara arrested

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The former Director General of the Institute of National Security Studies of Sri Lanka (INSSSL) Asanka Abeygunasekara has been arrested by police.

Abeygunasekara, against whom there was a pending open warrant over a case filed by the Inland Revenue Department (IRD), was arrested at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) in Katunayake this morning (21), police said.

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