J’pura University student tests positive for COVID-19

A management student at the University of Sri Jayawardenapura tested positive for COVID-19. According to the University’s Student Union, a student living in Panadura was placed in a dormitory and last visited the University on October 4.

A PCR test conducted yesterday confirmed that the student had contracted the coronavirus. Individuals who communicated with students in the Dorm, as well as those who had contact with her at the University, will be subjected to PCR testing tomorrow (October 11).

According to the Vice-rector of the University, students were informed not to vacate the premises of the hostel. It was said that meals for students will be provided by the University dormitory.

Meanwhile, the University’s management issued the following statement

A third-year student of the faculty of decision Sciences (DSC) of the faculty of management and Commerce has tested positive for COVID-19. The University took measures to conduct PCR tests on the student and admitted her to IDN. Reports on PCR tests of the student’s mother, who is reported to be a nurse at Panadura base hospital, have not yet been received by the University.

We don’t know how the student contracted COVID-19. The investigation is ongoing. There were two other students with a DSC student in the same boarding school and one student (3rd year) from the same Department. One of the pupils of the boarding house is from the Gampaha district. We are waiting for the results of their PCR tests. The Ministry of Health has been informed about this.

The University placed students in the same boarding house, and students who remained in the dormitory of the faculty of management and Commerce were quarantined.

The University switched course work to online mode from October 06, 2020, and students are not recommended to enter the University without having to, since most of the work is done through the LMS. External and post-graduate courses that take place on weekends have also switched to online mode.

While many students have left University dormitories since October 06, 2020, the University currently accommodates about 200 students who have remained in University dormitories. Several management and Commerce students who remained at the University were quarantined in dormitories in accordance with the COVID-19 quarantine guidelines issued by the Ministry of health.

Further decisions regarding a registered positive case of the disease at the University will be made after receiving the protocols of PCR tests of the student’s mother and students of the specified boarding house.

Sri Jayawardenepura University strictly follows the COVID-19 guidelines issued by the Ministry of health and will continue to do so to ensure the safety of its students and staff.

NLB on track to make lottery history

With sales of more than 3,500 tickets every minute, growing business volumes, and an extensive network, NLB is soaring to new heights.

The national lottery Board (NLB) – led by a Board of Directors led by its Chairman, Shyamila Perera – is hoping for record results. NLB expects annual revenue of RS 21 billion this year, and if they succeed, they will be the highest in Sri Lanka’s lottery history.
Ms. Perera said that if all goes well, they expect to reach that goal by December. She noted that getting there will require constant trading activity. “Our operation is 24×7, with more than 3,500 tickets sold every minute and four lotteries drawn every day,” she said. This figure for the whole of 2017 was 16.7 billion rupees, and a year earlier-20.1 billion rupees.

With nine lotteries and high prize structures in its portfolio, NLB is committed to increasing business volumes. And in the process, they produce many multi-millionaires. In fact, they have produced 160 multi-millionaires in the past four years .

The recently launched Dhana Nidhanaya offers Sri Lanka’s largest starting super prize – 80 million rupees. Mega Power has seen its starting super prize of 50 million rupees soar to more than 150 million rupees today. And Goviset’s super prize, which started at 60 million rupees, is now worth more than 100 million rupees. In fact, NLB produced a record 13 multi-millionaires in the first five months of this year. Over the same period, there were a total of more than 70 million winners, and they won more than 3.8 billion cash prizes.

According to Ms. Perera, there are an average of more than 550,000 winners each day; collectively, they win more than 25 million rupees. Earning income by network load balancing per day is about RS. 600 million on average.

NLB is one of the highest sources of revenue to the state Treasury. In fact, in the first five months of this year alone, they contributed more than 960 million rupees to the government. And in the four years from 2014 to 2017, they contributed 8.4 billion rupees to the government.

NLB has seen impressive growth since the new administration came to power in early 2015 and Ms. Perera became its Chairman. In 2015, NLB recorded a profit of RS 241 million. Recovery from a loss of RS 8 million in the previous year. In the three years since, they have made a profit of almost RS 414 million. Revenue, which was 17.1 billion rupees in 2015, reached 20.1 billion rupees in 2016 and is expected to exceed 20 billion rupees this year.

“We are a state-owned business organization charged with generating funds for the government, ” says Ms. Perera. – our intention is to be an exemplary business organization in the public sector.”
She believes that nlbs can achieve even greater success if they are not hindered by the various government procedures and regulations that state-owned enterprises are subject to. She says the need to comply with administrative circulars and other forms of bureaucracy limits efficiency.

“We understand and believe in the need for transparency, checks and balances and all that, but these rules can be time-consuming and quite suffocating,” MS Perera said. It notes, for example, that they require the approval of designated bodies for recruitment, which leads to unnecessary delays. “These things prevent us from being the strong, dynamic organization we would like to be,” she adds.

She hopes the government will change such restrictions that limit their ability to function as a business-oriented organization. “We need more flexibility, for example, to restructure the workforce to improve productivity,” she says.

Ms. Perera has made representations to higher authorities, including the responsible Minister, and hopes that the situation will change. She is confident that this will allow NLB to reach its true potential. Even at present, NLB, with only 400 employees, contributes much more to government revenue than most other state-owned enterprises, which have a workforce many times larger and belong to category A, but depend on the Treasury. .

NLB can build on its long-standing legacy and experience to achieve even more. In fact, they have a groundbreaking lottery brand – Mahajana Sampatha, which was launched in 1970. In 2016, NLB underwent a significant transformation with a new corporate identity and logo. Today, with a market share of 55-60% of the total number of tickets sold, it is the largest lottery organization in Sri Lanka.

NLB currently has 400 employees and an extensive network of 12,500 ticket sellers, 2,800 agents, and 108 district dealers covering all regions. It has expanded its presence in the North and East. Currently, these areas account for 2-3% of NLB’s revenue, and higher growth is expected in the future. In fact, the Jaffna area has consistently exceeded its sales targets.

NLB also deals with corporate social responsibility issues. Through their special CSR brand Neeroga, they have contributed RS 137 million to the national kidney Fund since July 2015. With a CSR budget of almost RS 100 million per year, they also participate in various sponsorship programs and other initiatives, such as the construction of water treatment facilities.

As part of a new digital transition initiative, NLB recently introduced an SMS-based system that has so far attracted more than 20,000 active users. MS Perera said they were currently discussing proposals from app developers and other digital solution providers to implement web and smartphone-based systems. However, she said they should take into account the concerns of their shareholders about the sale chain, who fear their livelihoods will be affected. “I think it’s best to involve them directly in such initiatives by offering them incentives and convenient apps for doing business,”she added.