The Sunday TimesPlus

14th April 1996



New Year Forecast

By H.G.Athukorale.

Aries - Success in exams

Arians will be lucky in money matters but inclined to indulge in luxury and an extravagant style of living. You will have changes in your activities, job careers. Employers will favour your requests and demands. You will have the chance of going abroad. Aries businessmen will succeed in import and export enterprises. You will inherit money and property. The unmarried will receive good marriage proposals and marriage can take place. Success in examinations, tests and similar activities is highly promised.

Taurus - Will gain prominence

In all matters regarding financial questions, you will be rather fortunate and have great regard for the value of money. You will crave for love and affection from others and yet feel very isolated in life. Those engaged in political and social affairs will see success in their attempts. However you will have enemies among known people. The unemployed will gain employment very quickly. You are likely to gain prominence and position in your career. Students will be crowned with success.

Gemini - Happy and successful

The year seems to be one in which will be very happy and successful in all matters . You will invest money in solid concerns and in building-up industry and business. You will have a change in your occupation if you run into the period of Saturn. A residential change will take place if you have Rahu or Mercury in your period. You will do all the best to settle some problems belonging to your business or career. Financially you will prosper if you have the period of beneficial planets. Love affairs will end in marriage during the 2nd half of this year.

Cancer - Change of job

You will have remarkable foresight in your plans. You have every reason to expect considerable success in all your undertakings. If you are within the Mercury or Jupiter period , you can raise funds or loans to meet your needs. You will have the chance of going abroad if you are under the Saturn period. Transfer from service is also indicated. A change in current job indicated if you are under Rahu's period. If you are under Jupiter's period you will succeed in examinations. Favourable for marriage proposals.

Leo - Birth of a child

You will be able to Find money to settle your commitments or complete your undertakings. You will have to be prudent and cautious as regards money. Expenditure over a house if you are under Mars' influence. You will be able to realize your ambitions with regard to your job or career. Improvements in your activities in social and political affairs denoted. You will have new contacts and contracts. Birth of a child is promised. Women born under this lagna will have a successful period especially after October .

Virgo - Mental powers will develop

Financially good for Virgo people. You will be interested in business and will be able to gain some money .Your mental powers will develop. Good year to realise your ambitions, but there may be some delay. If you within the Rahu period you will have the chance of going abroad. Good for partnership in business. Property matters will be attended to.

Libra - Own business

Libra subjects will have all success in activities they hope to do after May. Business and profession will see great improvement.

You will dispose of a property at a very reasonable price.

You will be able to start your own business venture with the help and cooperation of your good friends who are very rich.

You will gain money through shares and speculation. Your appeals with regard to your job-career will be successful. You will have bank loans to buy land. Success in all events in your life is promised.

Scorpio - Getting married

You will have financial aid from your spouse or business partner. Expected activities could be arranged and implemented after July.

You will be successful in competitive activities. However you will require money to meet your requirements, such as construction of a house or building. You can defeat your enemies. The unmarried will have chances of getting married during the next three months.

Students will have easy success in their examinations. Favourable period for women in all respects.

Sagittarius - Profitable period

Sagittarius subjects will have an enjoyable period as they will be able to realise what they want. You can expect a promotion or upgrading in your job career. Business, trade and profession will also see improvement. Those engaged in foreign trade will have a good and profitable period. You will spend money on property matters and gain good yields. Income will increase positively from December. There is the possibility of travel abroad in May or July. Lottery luck is promised in June- July. The unmarried can celebrate their wedding in June or September.

Capricorn - Problems settled amicably

Capricorn subjects will have increased income especially after July. They will be able to settle their current problems amicably. Your expectation with regard to your financial matters and your job will certainly come true after August. If you are within Jupiter period you will have a lot of expenditure on various matters. If you are under Mars you will definitely construct a house during June-July.

Increase in money income indicated. If you fall within the Rahu-Mercury period you will go abroad in August.

Aquarius - Salary increase in April

You will be able to meet some commitments. You will have a salary increase after April. In domestic life you will have all comforts and facilities. Purchase of a new car indicated. The year is highly favourable for women. Unmarried women can get married between July and December. Students will change their present college. You will have financial problems but you can overcome difficulties. If you are under Jupiter you will get money. If you are under Rahu a litigation is quite possible.

Pisces - Will become very famous

You will become very famous and popular among your circle. You will have adequate money if you are within the Mars period. If you fall into Jupiter's major period you can expect a promotion in your job, and a journey abroad is indicated. If you are within the Rahu period then you will have rifts and disputes in domestic life. Good for education. If you are within the Saturn period you have unexpected problems over your children and friends.

Rita Sebastian

She was the voice of reason

I sit down to pen this with a heavy heart. Rita Sebastian is no more. Death is difficult to accept but doubly so when one is far away and has not followed the day-to-day activities and illnesses of a good friend. There is also regret because so much has been left unsaid specially 'thank you for being such a helpful friend.'

My association with Rita began in the early 70s. I was about 12 years old an accompanied my journalist father to the old 'Times of Ceylon' at Bristol Street, Fort, where he worked.

It was a school holiday and my father had told me to come along and see my name 'in print'. Of course, what he meant was that he would take me to the newspaper lino and get my name done in hot lead and get a proof of that.

As the lino operator prepared the slug, a young woman walked into the works' department, as it is called in newspaper jargon, and jokingly asked my father whether he was training me to become a journalist. What prophetic words. That was my introduction to Rita.

After my father left the 'Times', we lost touch, but her name cropped up quite often in our home, specially when she became the first woman to be appointed a newspaper editor.

With my entry into journalism, contacts with Rita renewed, and strengthened when I married, because both Rita and my husband were foreign correspondents. She was the voice of reason and experience among the mostly volatile and impetus foreign correspondents.

She rose above the petty cut-throatism so rampant among journalists.

However, a yardstick of her competence was the fact that she was a much sought-after journalist, by diplomats, for an 'unbiased' view, without rhetoric. She did not attempt to thrust her opinion down anyone's throat, as most journalists tend to do. She may not have agreed with someone but she respected that person's right to hold that view.

The other amazing thing about her was her faith. The long years of journalism which usually leave most of us cynical, full of bitterness and distrust, left Rita untouched. She was a staunch Christian (Catholic?), but without the accompanying superiority complex that most Christians suffer from.

We met Rita regularly and what I enjoyed most were those cozy and casual evenings she organised, where a few journalists would get together and discuss any topic which took their fancy including, of course, politics, over her simple but delicious dinners. We even had one such dinner, the day before we left for Bombay.

In Bombay, we saw her byline in the 'Indian Express' often and she telephoned once or twice last year.

I can imagine what a loss it must be to her family, when we, her friends miss her so deeply. We can only hope that time will soften this blow. Goodbye Rita. You will always have a special place in our hearts.

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