Youth Affairs and Skills Development Minister Dullas Alahapperuma says that development must not be achieved at the expense of national values.
Alahapperuma has said that society has been stranded on the Information Technology super highway and culture of stars has been given priority while cultural, social and religious values have been cast aside.
Speaking during an awards ceremony for youth talents, the Minister has accused the electronic media institutions of trying to sell the talents of youth in the country for their advantage.
The Minister has been critical of the talent programmes organized by the electronic media institutions saying they destroyed the self-esteem and self-confidence of the youth who participate in them.
He has said that the National Youth Services Council (NYSC) has decided to launch programmes for youth to give priority to traditional values and to overcome the negative trends created by the new electronic media culture.
According to Alahapperuma, while accepting IT as an integral part of youth development in the modern world, it should be practiced without harming our heritage and culture.
He has added that the NYSC would undergo a major transformation in the next few months, as it was committed to brighten the lives of three million youth who have not been able to enter universities.