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Phase 2 of upgrading Northern railway line, kicks off

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Minister of Transport, Highways and Mass Media of Sri Lanka – Dr. Bandula Gunawardena and High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka – Mr. Santosh Jha has launched the 2nd phase of the project for track rehabilitation from Maho- Omanthai (128Km) being undertaken by an Indian Public Sector company, IRCON, under an Indian Line of Credit (LOC) of USD 318 million.

The rail track rehabilitation work at Galgamuwa Railway Station was ceremoniously launched yesterday (Dec. 07).

The cost of the entire project is USD 91.27 million and the 2nd phase from Maho to Anuradhapura is scheduled to be completed in a period of six months. 

State Minister of Mass Media – Mr. Shantha Bandara and senior officials from the Sri Lankan Ministry of Transport were also present at the event.

In his remarks, the Minister of Transport thanked India for the support extended to Sri Lanka, especially in the transport sector. Appreciating the work carried out by IRCON in Sri Lanka in the past few years, he called for greater Railway cooperation between the two countries.

The High Commissioner expressed happiness that as a long-standing development partner of Sri Lanka, India had executed projects for development and rehabilitation of Sri Lanka’s Northern and Southern Railway line over the past several years, in line with the priorities and requirements of the Government of Sri Lanka. He underscored the importance of modernization of Railways in enhancing mobility of goods and services in Sri Lanka thereby boosting economic activity.

India has provided over USD 1 billion in railway projects to Sri Lanka under five Indian LOCs, with IRCON contributing to modernization by reconstructing the Northern Province railway line network and upgrading the Southern line.

Via a contemporary signaling and telecommunication system, it has also helped to guarantee safety and dependability throughout a 330 km section of the railway line.

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94th Battle of the Maroons ends in a draw (Pics)

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The 94th Battle of the Maroons between Ananda and Nalanda concluded in a draw at SSC grounds. 

Despite the draw, Ananda secured a first innings lead, having declared their first innings at 286 for 9 wickets in response to Nalanda’s first innings total of 277 for 8 wickets, which was declared on the first day.

In the second innings, Nalanda, batting at 120 for 3 wickets, maintained a cautious approach, and the match ended without either team pursuing a more aggressive strategy in their first innings.

Ananda’s all-rounder Kithma Withanaparhirana played a notable innings, scoring 76 runs in 92 balls with 11 fours and a six on the second day. 

However, the team fell short of a century, with number three batter Dinada Athalage contributing a significant knock of 71 runs in 165 balls with 9 fours.

Despite the draw, the match witnessed commendable performances from key players, with Nalanda skipper Sajitha Vithanage earning the Man of the Match award for his unbeaten century.

Both teams showcased sportsmanship in the annual encounter, and Nalanda retained the N.M. Perera Trophy, presented by former Nalandian legend Stanley Jayasinghe. 

The trophy has been a symbol of the prestigious Battle of the Maroons series.

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Term tests for Western province suspended

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The term tests for grade 10 and 11 in the Western province schools has been postponed after some of the question papers were shared on social media ahead of the examination.

A senior official said that the decision had been taken after complaints that several question papers had been leaked out before the examinations.

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Russian Naval Ship Varyag Visits Colombo

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The Russian Naval Ship Varyag has arrived at the port of Colombo on a formal visit. 

This 187m long Missile Cruiser, manned by a crew of 529, is led by Flag Officer Captain 1st Rank Velichko Anatoly Vasicievich, with Captain 2nd Rank Glushakov Roman Nikolaevich serving as the Commanding Officer.

During their stay in Sri Lanka, the ship’s crew is expected to participate in various programs organized by the Sri Lanka Navy, fostering camaraderie and exploring tourist attractions in the country. 

The official visit will conclude, and Varyag is set to depart from the island tomorrow.

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