A guide book on Sri Lankan Birds written in the Russian language and published by the Russian based JMT Travels Tour Operators was launched recently at Sri Lanka Tourism. The book was officially handed over to Mr.

At least eight persons were killed and over 170, 000 affected countrywide from heavy floods caused from torrential rains.

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) alleged in Parliament yesterday the distribution of food items under the World Food Programme is not being implemented in the districts of Kilinochchi and Mulaitivu causing starvation and suffering among displaced families. However the government refuted this allegation saying lorries carrying food items are allowed to proceed to the affected areas. The House debated the issue as an adjournment motion bought by TNA leader R. Sampathan who alleged the security forces do not allow even essential medicines to pass into uncleared areas in Mannar and Vavuniya despite the Commissioner General of Essential Services having given his approval. He said 76,148 displaced persons had been affected in Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu under the circumstances. Mr. Sampanthan proposed that vehicles carrying medical professionals, recognized international and national institutions, and ambulances should be permitted

Galle Chief Magistrate, Thamara Tennakoon fined Rs. 330,000 on three fishermen who were found guilty of fishing using dynamites. The three fishermen were K. Anil De Zoyza, M. Somaratne and D. Dharmasena. Each of them was fined Rs. 110,000. They were remanded after being arrested on January 14. The explosives and other items in their possession were confiscated. Bernard Withanachchi presented the report on the explosives on behalf of the Department of Explosives. Crime Division of the Southern Province Anti-crime unit prosecuted.

An increase in the incidence of chikungunya has been reported in certain pockets in the Ratnapura district and the Epidemiology Unit of the Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry has taken precautionary measures to prevent an epidemic, the chief government epidemiologist Dr. Nihal Abeysingha said yesterday. "We have found seven chikungunya cases out of 14 samples tested in Eratna in the Ratnapura district. The patients have been treated at the OPD and there is no cause for panic as the disease is not life-threatening,' he said.