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No opening ceremony for 2023 ODI World Cup

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There will be no opening ceremony for the 2023 ODI World Cup, Indian media reported today.

The last time there was an ODI World Cup in the sub-continent, in 2011, there was a grand opening ceremony in Dhaka.

While the ICC and the BCCI have scheduled a ‘Captains’ Day’ event involving all the 10 team’s captains (photo-op and press conference) at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Wednesday, a day before the tournament’s opening match between England and New Zealand at the same venue, there will be no function to mark the start of the mega tournament.

“There was never an opening ceremony planned for the World Cup. I can confirm that,” a reliable source told Times of India.

In April, the BCCI staged a big opening ceremony for the IPL, which saw the presence of many Bollywood stars. “In the case of the IPL, you can have a short opening ceremony, as the match starts in the evening. Here, the match starts in the afternoon,” said the source.

Meanwhile, there’s little buzz in the city, as well at the Narendra Modi Stadium, before the first game of the World Cup, perhaps also due to the fact the opening match doesn’t involve India. Things are certain to be completely different when India play Pakistan here on October 14 in the most anticipated clash of the tournament.

The star-studded ceremony was projected to feature Bollywood actors and singers including Ranveer Singh, Varun Dhawan, Arijit Singh, Tamannaah Bhatia, Shreyas Ghoshal and Asha Bhosle. Plans were also made for a laser show and fireworks.

As per the latest reports, BCCI will only have captains meet today. The event which will see the captains of the ten teams answering a few questions, is likely to be followed by a laser show.

BCCI are expectedly mulling over thoughts to make the India versus Pakistan clash in October in Ahmedabad an even bigger one. A glittery ceremony could be held before the start of the match at 2 PM IST. Organising a closing ceremony on November 19 at the same venue could be one more option for the BCCI.

However, due to security reasons, the organizers have been careful not to make any pre-announcements regarding the activities that will take place in the World Cup cricket tournament.

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Election Commission invites tenders for election stationery

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The Election Commission has announced a call for tenders to procure essential stationery, including indelible ink, for the upcoming election. 

The required items include photocopy and printing paper, printed and data-printed envelopes, pens, pencils, carbon paper, staplers and stapler pins, calculators, and other necessary supplies for the election process. 

Tenders will be opened on August 2nd under the national competitive bidding process.

Meanwhile, Deputy Postmaster General Rajitha Ranasinghe stated that preparations for the Presidential Election are ongoing despite a staff shortage. 

He confirmed that 8000 mail delivery staff will be deployed for relevant tasks. 

However, the Election Commission and relevant authorities have been informed about the staffing issue.

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Sri Lanka announces squad for home series against India

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Sports Minister Harin Fernando has approved the 16-member squad for Sri Lanka’s upcoming home series against India, with Charith Asalanka named as the Captain.

The squad includes notable players such as Kusal Janith Perera, Dinesh Chandimal, and Chamindu Wickremesinghe.

India’s tour of Sri Lanka will feature a three-match T20I series followed by a three-match ODI series.

**Sri Lanka’s 16-member squad:**

1. Charith Asalanka – Captain
2. Pathum Nissanka
3. Kusal Janith Perera
4. Kamindu Mendis
5. Dasun Shanaka
6. Wanindu Hasaranga
7. Mahesh Theekshana
8. Matheesha Pathirana
9. Nuwan Thushara
10. Dunith Wellalage
11. Dushmantha Chameera
12. Binura Fernando
13. Dinesh Chandimal
14. Avishka Fernando
15. Chamindu Wickremesinghe

ODI Series at R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
– August 2
– August 4
– August 7

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Hospital to be established at Somawathiya Raja Maha Viharaya

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The Health Ministry has announced plans to construct a peripheral hospital within the Somawathiya Raja Maha Viharaya premises to serve the large number of devotees and nearby communities.

A special discussion on this initiative was recently held at the temple, led by the Chief Incumbent, Ven. Pahamune Sri Sumangala Thera. 

The Chief Incumbent highlighted the temple’s significant daily visitor count of around 1,000 devotees, which swells to over 50,000 on Poya days and exceeds 100,000 during Poson and Esala Poya days. 

Currently, devotees who fall ill are transported to Polonnaruwa Hospital, a process that will be significantly eased with the new hospital.

Under the Health Ministry’s directives, two ambulances from Polonnaruwa General Hospital have been stationed at the temple to assist sick devotees. 

The new hospital will provide much-needed relief to the local villages of Sungawila, Katuwanwala, Galkanda, and Kandakadu.

Health Secretary Dr. Palitha Mahipala outlined the facilities of the new hospital, which will include an outpatient department, an emergency treatment unit, male and female wards, and residential quarters for doctors and health staff. 

This hospital will function as an affiliate of Polonnaruwa General Hospital, with staff being deployed from the main hospital.

A special Cabinet paper for the hospital’s construction is set to be presented, with an allocation of Rs.100 million for the project this year.

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