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Who stole Rs.30 million worth of goods from President’s House?

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An audit conducted by the Auditor General’s Department has revealed that many items worth nearly Rs.35 million were missing from the President’s House and the Media Division of the Presidential Secretariat.

The audit report said that no investigation has been done regarding any of the missing items till the date of audit.

According to an intimation made by a Senior Assistant Secretary to the President on November 18, 2019, a search conducted by the storekeeper of the President’s House has revealed that 61 items belonging to 35 inventory categories were missing, but no investigation has been conducted until March 2022.

Out of the 52 computers worth over Rs.10 million released from the 2015 to January 2020, only four computers have been returned and two of them were in unusable condition, the audit report said.

The report further said that out of 45 mobile phones and iPads worth Rs.3.4 million given to the officers attached to the Media Division during the same period, only 14 mobile phones and three iPads were returned but nine mobile phones and two iPads were not in working condition.

According to a report sent by engineers to the President’s Secretary regarding the items of the Media Division, a large number of items with a value of nearly Rs.35 million were missing from the Media Division.

Meanwhile, out of 104 laptops worth Rs.17 million only 26 laptops and two MacBook Air type laptops have been returned.

The audit report further stated that 12 items belonging to the President’s House in Katharagama and two television sets at the President’s House in Anuradhapura are missing.

No investigation had been conducted regarding any of these items till the date of audit.

56 arrested for barging in!

Meanwhile, the Colombo Central Crime Investigation Unit said that 56 suspects have been arrested for forcibly entering the President’s House in Fort and damaging and stealing its property.

Police said artistes, trade union activists and political activists are among those arrested.

A senior police officer said that investigations are underway to arrest 58 more people in connection with the investigations carried out in this regard.

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Alka Yagnik diagnosed with “rare sensory hearing loss

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Veteran Bollywood singer Alka Yagnik, who revealed that she has been diagnosed with a “rare sensory hearing loss” due to a viral attack, has suffered a type of hearing loss caused by damage to the inner ear or the nerve pathways that transmit sound from the ear to the brain.

According to Dr Manish Munjal, Vice Chairman, ENT, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi, sudden sensory hearing loss is a medical emergency as it can become irreversible if not aggressively treated in 48-72 hours.

“The centre of the problem is the inner ear organ called Cochlea, where it happens due to damage to the hair cells,” Munjal told IANS on Tuesday.

The causes may range from simple viruses like Herpes, Varicella, and Mumps or sudden loud exposure to noise levels above 85 decibel (dB).

Munjal also mentioned that this disorder may also result from more serious causes like painkiller overdose, chemotherapy, tumour compression, meningitis and stroke.

“The need of the hour is usually to rush to an ENT specialist to get the necessary ear examination done as well as get an audiometry test. Once diagnosed, the treatment may require a cocktail of antivirals, oral and intratympanic steroids, as well as rest from noisy environments,” he stated.

According to the doctor, once the treatment is initiated, the chances of recovery are usually 70 per cent and above.

The disorder affects only 1 per cent in bilateral ears as compared to single ear, Munjal noted.

(IANS)

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President apologizes over compulsory cremations during Covid-19 pandemic

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has apologized for making cremation compulsory during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“During this time there was a lot of pain, mainly felt not only by the Muslims, but also Hindus, Buddhists and Christians, I know who also prefer burial,” President Wickremesinghe said in Parliament.

He said that a committee appointed to look into the matter at the time had recommended cremation, a decision which was upheld by the Supreme Court as well. So, that had to be followed. There was no other alternative during that time, he said.

He assured that Sri Lanka will bring in a law that will allow the right of burial, right of cremation or gifting one’s body to medical institutions.

(Excerpts : dailymirror.lk)

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Postage stamp to be increased to Rs. 100 in July

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A proposal has been made to increase the price of an ordinary postage stamp to Rs. 100 by July, Mass Media Ministry Secretary Anusha Palpita said.

He told the Daily Mirror that the Postal Department is currently incurring an annual loss of Rs. 7,000 million.

“Last year, the loss was reduced to Rs. 3,200 million. However, with a salary increase for postal employees costing Rs. 2,800 million this year, the Postal Department’s loss will rise again to Rs. 7,000 million.” he said.

“If the losses continue to increase, it might reach Rs. 5 billion by 2025. Less than 1.5 million people use postage stamps, yet the entire country bears the burden of the Postal Department’s losses,” he added.

The price of a stamp was Rs. 15 until 2022, and the current price is Rs. 50.

“We are awaiting approval from the Treasury to raise the price of a postage stamp. This decision is necessary due to the ongoing losses of the Postal Department,” Palpita said.

(dailymirror.lk)

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

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