Chief Incumbent of Sambuddhaloka Viharaya, Colombo Ven. Prof. Ittademaliye Indrasara Thera yesterday said the Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited (Lake House) has been rendering an invaluable service for the preservation and promotion of religion, culture, language and the national heritage of the country for over a century.

The Thera was delivering an Anusasana after invoking blessings for the year 2021 at the Lake House company premises yesterday.

Ven. Prof Ittademaliye Indrasara Thera said that Lake House Founder late D.R. Wijewardene was committed to the freedom of the country. The Thera said that he rendered a yeoman service for the uplift of the Buddha Sasana. The Lake House employees are also following in the footsteps of its founder and rendering a great service to the country and the religion. The Thera said Lake House Chairman W. Dayaratne, PC is steering the institution on the right path despite many obstacles and difficulties.

The Thera also invoked the blessings on the staff and the management led by Chairman W. Dayaratne, PC for the New Year

Hindu, Catholic and Islamic religious dignitaries also blessed the staff and the management for the New Year. Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Limited (Lake House) Chairman W. Dayaratne, PC said the company plans to meet its economic targets this year in the face of COVID-19 pandemic. He said that 13 new educational publications in Sinhala and English mediums will be launched tomorrow at a ceremony to be held under the patronage of Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella in addition to three educational publications launched by the company during the course of last year.

The ANCL Chairman sought the support of all employees to make this effort a success. He also thanked the staff, on behalf of the management who rendered their service to the company in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. He said that the company was operating at a loss of over Rs.600 million when he assumed duties as the Chairman on December 16, 2019. The Chairman described how he and the members of the Director Board reached all Government institutions to obtain advertisements in order to ease the debt burden of the company.

“We received a favourable response from these institutions. However, Lake House stopped printing papers for more than a month with the onset of COVID-19 in the country from March last year,” he said.

He added that the company incurred a loss of Rs.100 million due to the prevalent situation in the country.

"Lake House stopped printing papers for more than a month for the first time since the establishment of the company . Though arrangements were made to print the paper thereafter, the company did not receive any income,” he said.

He said that the company succeeded in launching several tabloids targeting the students who are sitting for the GCE Ordinary Level, Grade 5 Scholarship Examinations and pre-schools students. The ANCL Chairman added that the operations at the Commercial Printing Department commenced after a lapse of four years and the company succeeded in making some profits.