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Sri Lankan monks take Vesak message to Beijing (Pics)

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The Sri Lanka Embassy in Beijing hosted a grand Vesak celebration on 5 May with around 500 Chinese and Sri Lankans participating. While the staff worked tirelessly, teams of Chinese well wishers made the event an outstanding success.

Over 35 monks and nuns, including six senior monks from Sri Lanka, the Venerable Yogiyane Sobhitha Thero, Venerable Dr. Bodagama Chandima Nayaka Thero,  Venerable Wanduragala Dhammarama Thero, and Venerable Uduwe Dharmaloka Thero and graced the occasion. Monks from the Lingguang Temple and the Guangxi Temple in Beijing and the White Horse Temple (Bai Ma Shi) in Luoyang lent an exceptional aura to the event. All the monks and nuns were provided daane (alms giving) at the Residence on the two days of the event. Around 500 devout Chinese Buddhists and Sri Lankans were present to celebrate the occasion. A sacred relic accompanied by the Sri Lankan monks was highly appreciated by the participants. The large crowd was seated in a white marquee specially constructed in the Embassy grounds by the Chinese well wishers.

The Embassy grounds were gaily decorated with hundreds of fairy lights and traditional lanterns. A number of Ambassadors invited from the Indian Ocean region and other diplomatic representatives graced the occasion. A dansala provided by the Chinese well wishers was kept open till late to provide dinner for all present.

Reverend Uduwe Dharmaloka Thero led the assembly in reciting gaathas. Deputy Chief Thero of the Lanka Amarapura Mulawansha Maha Nikaya, the Venerable Yogiyane Sobhitha Thero, spoke of Buddhism being more a way of life and of the long standing religious ties between China and Sri Lanka. Ambassador Dr. Palitha Kohona, who presided over the event, spoke of the Buddha’s message of non-violence and of metta, mudita, karuna and upekha and their relevance in today’s strife torn world. The President’s message was read out by Deputy Chief of Mission Mr. K.K. Yoganaadan. The staff choir and a team of students sang bakthi geetha while two Chinese singers enthralled the gathering with beautiful Chinese devotional songs.

The Ambassador encouraged the Chinese participants to visit Sri Lanka while the Ven. Dr. Bodagama Chandima Thero invited the Chinese to visit our sacred Buddhist sites, including the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, and to witness the Esala Perehera in August this year.

Old timers agreed that the event was the best Vesak celebration that they had experienced at the Embassy.

(beijing.embassy.gov.lk)

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Cricket equipment distributed to 67 schools in the Gampaha district

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With the aim of developing cricket in the schools of the Gampaha district, cricket equipment was distributed to 67 schools yesterday (July 15) at the Presidential Secretariat. 

This event was held under the patronage of Mr. Sagala Ratnayaka, the Chief of Staff to the President and the President’s Senior Adviser on National Security.

The program was organized by the Youth Vision 2048 organization and the Sri Lanka Cricket Board, following the vision of President Ranil Wickremesinghe. It was carried out under the full guidance and supervision of Mr. Sagala Ratnayaka.

In his address, Mr. Ratnayaka emphasized the importance of school cricket in nurturing talented players for the national level. He also highlighted President Wickremesinghe’s commitment over the past two years to rebuilding the country’s economy. The President aims to implement an economic program that ensures a prosperous future for the country’s children within a corruption-free framework.

Mr. Ruwan Wijewardena, Presidential Adviser on Climate Change, also spoke at the event, expressing his appreciation for all those contributing to the development of future generations’ sports skills.

President of Youth Affairs and Sustainable Development Director Sachira Sarathchandra, Youth Vision 2048 Advisor Dr. Lasantha Gunawardena, Youth Vision 2048 President Dan Poddiwela, along with officials and principals from the Sri Lanka Cricket Board, sports instructors, and students, were present at the event.

(President’s Media Division)

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Maithri, Pujith, Nilantha given time till August 30 to finish payments

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The Supreme Court yesterday ordered former President Maithripala Sirisena, former IGP Pujith Jayasundara and former Chief of State Intelligence Service, DIG Nilantha Jayawardena to pay all the compensations stipulated by the Supreme Court’s decision regarding the Easter Sunday terror attacks before August 30.

If they fail to pay the amount before that date, the Attorney General was ordered to take the necessary steps to prosecute them before September 20 for contempt of Court for not acting according to the judgement.

Also, according to the decision of the Supreme Court, the National Police Commission was ordered to take the necessary steps to conduct a disciplinary investigation against the former head of the State Intelligence Service Nilantha Jayawardena and report to the Court about its progress on September 20 through a motion.

Meanwhile, the Court was informed that out of the Rs. 75 million ordered by the Court, former IGP Pujith Jayasundera has paid only Rs. 1.9 million.

The Court was further informed that then Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando has paid the total amount of compensation ordered by the Supreme Court.

President’s Counsel Faizer Mustapha, appearing for Maithripala Sirisena, informed the Supreme Court that his client has already paid Rs. 58 million in compensation to the victims and further requested for six years to pay the remaining Rs. 42 million in equal installments.

(dailynews.lk)

(This story, originally published by dailynews.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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This week’s Cabinet decisions

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A number of decisions have been taken at the Cabinet meeting held yesterday (July 15).

The decisions taken by the Cabinet of Ministers are as follows :

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