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Sexuality Education to be introduced from preschool

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The Parliamentary Caucus for Children has decided to commence a programme to provide Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) to students from preschool until Grade 13 from next month.

Fourteen books focusing on pre-school children as well as students of other grades are currently being prepared by the National Institute of Education to provide CSE. 

Physicians and the officials of the Ministries of Child and Women Affairs as well as Health are backing the move. The contents of the books prepared will differ based on the grade. These books are given as additional reading books, said the Chairperson of the Caucus, MP Rohini Kumari Wijerathna, to ‘Aruna’ yesterday (16).

She said that since it is difficult to print books for all children at once, students will be given the opportunity to read the book online first. She said the assistance will be obtained from non-governmental organisations to print the books.

The MP said that a discussion will be held in Parliament next week regarding the progress of preparing the syllabus and a specific date for commencing the programme will be decided based on that progress.

The chairperson also said that the main reason for child abuse is the society’s lack of knowledge on CSE.

In 2019, the attempts to introduce ‘Hathe Ape Potha’ book to provide Sexual Education to seventh grade students were abandoned due to objections received from several sections of the society.

(Aruna)

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Number of rabies deaths on the rise

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The Ministry of Health said that the number of people who have died from rabies has increased in the last few years.

Dr. Heshan Guruge, medical officer of the Anti-Rabies Division, said that the lack of knowledge about rabies as well as the bites of animals other than dogs have led to the increase in these deaths.

Dr. Guruge expressed these views while attending a discussion held yesterday (20) at the Health Promotion Bureau in conjunction with the World Rabies Day on September 28.

“When studying the human deaths that happened in the last few years due to rabies, we can see that a number of animals other than dogs have bit them. In some cases, it is not even possible to know who the animal is. Several people who had passed out after being drunk had been bitten by some animal. After a few days, the symptoms of rabies develop. Several such incidents were reported in the last two or three years. Proper first aid should be given in case of any animal bite. Wash the wound with soap and water. If you have alcohol at home, an iodine solution like betadine, surgical spirit, or an antiseptic liquid like hydrogen peroxide, you can use it. Then go to a hospital. If we do this, we can eliminate rabies from Sri Lanka,” he said.

Don’t get closer to new pets for two weeks

Meanwhile, Dr. Athula Liyanapathirana, community specialist of the Epidemiology Unit, said that 12 people have died due to rabies in 2023 so far.

He said that there is a risk of contracting rabies from the bites of all mammals.

The Anti-rabies Unit said that 25 to 30 people die from rabies every year.

The Epidemiology Unit requested the people not to get closer to pets such as dogs and cats for 14 days after bringing them home.

Arrangements should be made to vaccine the dogs against rabies before a period of four weeks has passed.

When bitten by a dog, the area should be washed and cleaned with soap for ten minutes, and after that it is important to seek medical treatment immediately.

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Danushka Gunathilaka’s trial concludes: verdict on 28

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The trial against Sri Lankan cricketer Danushka Gunathilaka has been concluded.

The final hearing was held before Judge Sarah Huggett at the Downing Center District Court in Sydney, Australia today.

Accordingly, the Judge has informed that the verdict of the trial will be delivered next Thursday (28).

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Nishantha Muthuhettigama re-remanded

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Former MP Nishantha Muthuhettigama has been ordered to be further remanded until September 27 by the Galle Magistrate’s Court.

He has been accused of illegally assembling a jeep.

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