President Mahinda Rajapaksa said at yesterday’s Cabinet meeting that all the TV channels should be requested not to telecast teledramas between 7.00 pm and 9.00 pm so that schoolchildren could devote their time to studying.
The president said that the Cabinet should make a collective request to the TV channels operating in the country.
At this time, Construction and Engineering Services Minister Wimal Weerawansa had reportedly said that all the political programmes should be telecast during this time instead of teledramas. The president had smilingly responded to that remark saying that even adults would stop watching TV in that case.
Cabinet, chaired by the president, discussed numerous matters of national importance. The president instructed Cabinet to take steps to adopt a common policy for the transfer of District Secretaries disregarding ethnicity.
He said that there was a tradition of sending Tamil district secretaries to the North and Muslim district secretaries to the East.
“We must do away with this tradition. Sinhalese officials should be able to work in Jaffna and Tamil officials in Hambantota if the situation warrants. We have to adopt such a policy,” he told Cabinet.
He also stressed the need to change the system of categorising schools as Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim.
Education Minister Bandula Gunawardane noted that the National Education Commission, too, had made similar recommendations. However, Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne said that, though it was a good concept, there would be difficulties in changing the present system.
The president said in response that such a classification of schools was a historical blunder which needed to be corrected.