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NE schools to get 2915 graduate teachers, planning officers

Aug 3 (TN) Interviews to recruit 2188 graduates as teachers (1684 Tamil medium and 504 Sinhala medium) and 727 graduates (629 Tamil mediums and 98 Sinhala medium) as Planning and Financial Assistants for schools in the North East province are to begin on August 4 in the districts of Jaffna, Killinochchi, Mullaitivu, Mannar, Vavuniya, Trincomalee, Batticaloa and Kalmunai more..

Kumaratunga seeks SC to determine poll date

Aug 3 (TN) President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Tuesday sought the Supreme Court's determination on the controversial issue of the date of the conduct of the next Presidential election in Sri Lanka, according to a news release issued by Sri Lanka's Presidential Office Wednesday. more..

Unions end month-long nationwide university strike

Aug 3 (WSWS) Sri Lanka’s Inter University Trade Union Joint Committee (IUTUJC) ended a month-long national strike of non-academic employees late last week after agreeing to a small salary increase and the promise of a future monthly compensation allowance. more..

17 more Lankan women lodge plaint with ministry

Aug 3 (KT) Seventeen more Sri Lankan women cleaners joined their colleagues in filing a complaint with the labour authorities against their company over alleged unpaid dues. On July 26, eight Sri Lankan women working as cleaners with 'West Coast Cleaning and Environment Service Establishment' in Bida Zayed Hospital lodged a complaint against their company alleging that they had not been paid salaries for three months. more..

Maliban gives striking workers an ultimatum

Aug 3 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s oldest biscuit manufacturer Maliban has given its striking workers an ultimatum of Friday to get back to work or vacate their posts. Some 600 of Maliban’s workers are striking outside its factory in Ratmalana, demanding the removal of the company’s Chief Executive Officer and Human Resources Manager. more..

VAT on luxury items up by 2 % to 20 percent from August.

Aug 3 (LBO) VAT on the government list of luxury items went up from 18 percent to 20 percent from August 1, said the Inland Revenue. ”The VAT increase applies to all luxury items including vehicles,” said Commissioner General of Inland Revenue, P P D P Karunasekera. more..

Tamil proficiency must for State sector in Sri Lanka

Aug 3 (AT) Sri Lanka will draft a new legislation shortly to make Tamil language proficiency compulsory for all future recruits to the State sector. Announcing this, Constitutional Affairs Minister D.E.W. Gunasekera said lack of Sinhala and Tamil knowledge is a major hurdle for proper discharge of duties for the public service personnel. more..

After Ceasefire, Northern province has grown twice as fast as the Western province – Jayantha Dhanapala

Aug 3 (AT) Rejecting the claim that the North and the East have not reaped the benefits of the peace dividend, Jayantha Dhanapala, Head of the Peace Secretariat, told the business community that research into the post-Ceasefire situation “has shown that, in fact, it has triggered economic growth in the North and the East.” more..

Smirnoff Vodka invests in Lanka

Aug 3 (AT) Chief Operating Officer Diageo India and South East Asia R. L. Rajah said that Sri Lanka has an exciting market especially with its growing demand for tourism. "We have tied up with ID Lanka Limited, one of the leading distillers in the country to manufacture Smirnoff Vodka in their plant. more..

Government says Kilinochchi named as PTOMS hq to reaffirm sovereignty and territorial integrity

Aug 3 (AT) The government contended that Tamil rebel held Kilinochchi was selected as headquarters for tsunami joint mechanism to reaffirm the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, Relief, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Secretary M.S. Jayasinghe stated this in his statement of objections filed in the Supreme Court. more..

Sri Lanka Printers in world-class quality

Aug 3 (AT) Sri Lanka Association of Printers (SLAP) once in every two years holds a Print Competition, an exhibition of the collection of printed matter by its members which are placed for the competition and an Awards Night. On 29th July at 9.30 in the morning The Print Products Exhibition was inaugurated at the main entrance of the BMICH and the exhibition continued the following day. more..

Request made for Private Universities

Aug 3 (LT) A number of top businessmen who run international schools have requested education authorities to permit for private universities. They have reportedly forwarded the request as the national universities do not enroll the students from international schools functional in Sri Lanka. more..

Premalal Gunasekera resigns from portfolios

Aug 3 (LT) Deputy Minister of Irrigation, Mahaweli & River basins Premalal Jayasekera has resigned from his portfolios. He has also resigned from the post of organizer of the SLFP for Nivithigala electorate. He has made these resignations known in a letter to the President with a copy to the General Secretary of the SLFP. more..

Vital information regarding the murder of journalist Dharmaratnam Sivaram comes to light

Aug 3 (SLBC) The officials of the Colombo Crime Division say the suspect who was arrested in connection with the killing of journalist Dharmaratnam Sivaram was aware of murder of the journalist. The officials informed the Kaduwela magistrate that they were in possession of provisional evidence in this regard. more..

The second round talks on the Sethusamudram project ended with a note of success

Aug 3 (SLBC) The Foreign Ministry says the second round of technical level discussions between India and Sri Lanka on the Sethusamudram project was successful. A release from the Ministry says that both sides agreed on an arrangement to share relevant data which could enable them to assess and monitor the environmental impact of the project. more..

Final decision mine - Commissioner

Aug 3 (BBC) The election date will be decided according to the rules and regulations and the length of the particular office says the commissioner of elections, Dayananda Dissanayake. It is the Election Commissioner who has the right to make the decision about holding the next presidential election, he said. more..

UNP gets bitter against Mahinda

Aug 3 (SAMN) The main opposition UNP yesterday launched a bitter onslaught on Prime Minister and SLFP presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapakse, accusing him of neglecting even his poor district of Hambantota while millions of rupees given for tsunami victims in that district were stuck in a private account under suspicious circumstances. more..

Solheim puts mediation work on hold

Aug 3 (SAMN) A leading Norwegian mediator in the ongoing peace process in Sri Lanka said on Monday he would put his mediation work on hold to participate in Norway's general election campaign next month. Erik Solheim, who headed up Norway's Socialist Left Party between 1987 and 1997, more..

Tigers still preying on children

Aug 3 (LNP) Despite the repeated warnings from the UN and the international community, the abduction of children, in the North and East, by the LTTE has escalated during the past few days. In the most recent case, three teenage girls were abducted at Erakkandy, Kuchchaveli when they were on their way to a church on Monday (1). more..

No more bogus BOI degrees

Aug 3 (LNP) Amidst reports of mushroom higher education institutions giving questionable degrees, President Chandrika Kumaratunga has ordered that academic institutions must not be given permission to operate as BOI projects without approval from the Education Ministry or the University Grants Commission. more..

CBK cannot stay on after December 22, 2005: UNP

Aug 3 (LNP) Commenting on the controversial issue of the timing of the Presidential election, Deputy General Secretary of the UNP, Tissa Attanayake threatened that his party would not tolerate the President remaining in that position, after December 22, but take serious action if an attempt is made to do so. more..

Rajapakse calls for TNA support

Aug 3 (TP) Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse, the ruling party’s new presidential candidate, has invited Tamil parliamentarians from the LTTE-controlled Tamil National Alliance (TNA) for talks to secure their support for his candidature. The request was made to TNA Parliamentarian M K Ilavendran when he met the premier in Colombo, more..

Over 15,000 nurses to health sector

Aug 3 (DN) The Government has launched a crash programme to recruit 15,000 nurses to provide a more satisfactory and up-to-date health services. Healthcare and Nutrition Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said he has accelerated the recruitment of 15,000 nurses to enhance the health service. more..

Mishandled generators fail at hospital in Colombo

Aug 3 (GT) WORK in one section of the Colombo South Hospital came to a halt for over three hours yesterday morning, due to a power failure and generator failure. Two generators provided to the hospital at a cost of several million rupees have been damaged due to kerosene being used instead of diesel, by those responsible for running and maintaining them, more..

Crackers and Guns: Elephant Herding Sri Lanka Style

Aug 3 (Reuters) Sweating nervously in the jungle heat, Sri Lankan ranger Mahesh Pahalage peers warily through dense undergrowth at a towering elephant's swishing trunk and gestures silently to a camouflaged colleague. more..

Tourist arrivals up 42%, but hoteliers unhappy

Aug 3 (ANN) Tourism authorities say tourist numbers to the island are increasing but hoteliers and inbound tour operators say the industry is in dire straits. According to Tourist Board statistics tourist arrivals increased 35 per cent in May and 42 per cent in June, compared to the same months last year. more..

Strife slows Sri Lanka's aid effort

Aug 3 (CSM) The reason that a share of $3.2 billion in tsunami relief aid isn't reaching the people here goes back to a statue of Buddha. When a rickshaw drivers' association installed the statue in the main marketplace in May, the fear of Buddhist colonization sent Tamils into the streets, shutting down the city completely for three days. more..

IMF Warns Sri Lanka Tsunami Aid Poses Inflation Risk

Aug 3 (DJ) The International Monetary Fund warned Sri Lanka on Tuesday that the large sums of foreign aid it has received since the devastating Indian Ocean tsunami have had an undesirable side effect: the country's inflation rate is likely to surge in 2005. more..

India, Sri Lanka agree to monitor environmental impact of canal project

Aug 3 (TN) During the second round of Technical Level Discussions held between India and Sri Lanka on the Sethusamudram Ship Channel Project in New Delhi on 1st August 2005, the sides agreed to “an arrangement to share relevant data …. which could enable them to assess and monitor the environmental impact of the project," more..

SL keen to join bid for hosting 2011 World Cup

Aug 3 (Jang) Sri Lanka is ready and keen to join hands with India, Pakistan and Bangladesh to host the 2011 World Cup cricket tournament because then "we will be a force to reckon with", said Tryphon R Mirando, Secretary Interim Committee of the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC). more..

IMF asks Sri Lanka to focus on growth potential of North & East

Aug 3 (PTI) The International Monetary Fund, has urged Sri Lanka to emphasise on the "significant untapped potential in the north and east of the country." In its article 'Consultation with Sri Lanka', it said that with the reconstruction plans in place, the country should focus on long-term challenges. more..

Sri Lanka gains from calmer seas

Aug 3 (IHT) Three years after Sri Lankan rebels and the government agreed to a cease-fire, insurers have taken the nation off the war-risk list, cutting costs for exporters like MAS Holdings, which makes Victoria's Secret lingerie and Gap pants. more..

IMF warns Sri Lanka heading for more trouble after tsunamis

Aug 3 (AFP) The International Monetary Fund warned Sri Lanka to revive a peace process with Tamil rebels and step up its tsunami reconstruction or risk compounding already serious economic woes. Large fiscal deficits and a high level of public debt are sources of macro-economic instability while inflation is galloping away and reforms lagging, more..

Recourse to Court action on election date challenged

Aug 4 (TN) The main opposition United National Party (UNP) Wednesday announced that incumbent President has no authority to seek the Supreme Court its determination on fixing the date for the next Presidential election, political sources in Colombo said. more..

Young woman found stabbed to death in Batticaloa town

Aug 4 (TN) Unidentified dead body of a young woman, estimated to be between 20 to 25 years of age, was found inside a class room of the Batticaloa Methodist Central College in Batticaloa town Wednesday evening. The body was found with stab wounds to the neck. more..

AFTA calls for support to Tamil rights

Aug 4 (TN) In a press release issued Thursday, Australian Federation of Tamils Association (AFTA) called on the International Community to recognize Tamils right to self-determination. AFTA said in the release that it fully endorses the proclamation made during the Tamil conference in Vavuniya on 27 July more..

Helgesen to visit Colombo, Kilinochchi

Aug 4 (TN) Norwegian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Vidar Helgesen, will be arriving in Colombo on Thursday on a four day visit, according to a press release issued by the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Colombo on Wednesday. Mr. Helgesen will have meetings with President Kumaratunga and with the LTTE. more..

Sri Lanka pull off spectacular victory

Aug 4 (CI) Mahela Jayawardene scripted a miraculous back-from-the-dead victory for Sri Lanka in the fourth group match of the tri-series in Dambulla. After India's stop-start batting performance had set 221 for victory, Sri Lanka stumbled to 95 for 6, before Jayawardene, along with Upul Chandana, carried them to victory. more..

Lanka’s peace activists ring war alarm

Aug 4 (DH) Warning of the possibility of an imminent war with the speedy escalation of ceasefire related violence and the political killings in the North-East region, Sri Lanka’s peace activists from 20 leading Civil Society organisations, on Wednesday urged the Norwegian facilitators to urgently organise a direct meeting between the government and the LTTE to discuss out the looming threat. more..

Let court settle term row: Lanka Prez

Aug 4 (HT) The Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Tuesday sought the Supreme Court's help to settle the controversy over her term. While she contends that her term ends in 2006, the opposition United National Party (UNP) says that it ends at the end of 2005 itself. more..

UN will go to sleep on LTTE child soldiers -- SPUR

Aug 4 (AT) Society for Peace, Unity and Human Rights (SPUR) -- an Australian-based NGO -- has expressed doubts as to whether UN will take action after the latest resolution passed on child soldiers. SPUR has appealed to Olara Otunnu, UN Special Representative on .... to implement the decisions of the UN resolutions on this critical issue. more..

Greens say dredging Palks Strait will destroy marine ecology

Aug 4 (AT) The environmentalists continue their protests over Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project (SSCP), while the Sri Lankan government denied the report that Colombo had given the green light to the project. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that no such decision was conveyed to the Indian authorities more..

Sri Lanka to ban killing stray dogs

Aug 4 (LBO) Sri Lanka plans to outlaw the slaughter of stray dogs as a "catch and kill" policy has failed to reduce the incidence of rabies, Health Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said Wednesday. more..

Taps dry up at Sri Lanka's top night spots

Aug 4 (LBO) Taps at some of Sri Lanka's top city night spots, hotels, bars and restaurants have gone dry following lightening raids by inspectors of the Excise Dept, officials said Wednesday. Over the last two weeks, Excise officials have fined 52 bars, restaurants, five-star hotels and clubs netting in Rs. 5.2 million to the usually parched treasury. more..

Commissioner not bound by court opinion

Aug 4 (BBC) Elections Commissioner is not bound by the opinions expressed or advice given by the supreme court,says the human rights lawyer, J.S.Weiliamuna. He said that the president has sought the advice of the supreme court on the holding of presidential elections. more..

Passion drives the game in Lanka

Aug 4 (Hindu) "Percy's cricket crazy but he has no mercy for cricketers, spectators, administrators, and the rest who are lazy," says the man who — for the last 25 years — has waved a proud Sri Lankan flag wherever the islanders have played. A man who refers to himself in the third person, a man who has named a son and a grandson Garfield and another grandson Sachin. more..

Johnston naming Karu indicates power struggle in UNP - Mangala

Aug 4 (LT) Mr. Mangala Samaraweera has challenged Prof. G.L. Peiris to name the UNP's Prime Ministerial candidate. He points out that though Parliamentarian Johnston Fernando has already announced that the Prime Ministerial candidate of the UNP was Mr. Karu Jayasuriya, it should be announced officially. more..

Court extends stay order in estate land expropriation case

Aug 4 (TN) Colombo High Court which began hearing on the Ingurugama estate case on Monday extended the stay order preventing State's attempt to expropriate land belonging to estate workers at the Ingurugama tea estate in Badulla district and postponed the hearing to 26 September, legal sources said. more..

Indian Tamils to protest against SL Minister's ethnic slur

Aug 4 (TN) Tamils of Indian Origin from upcountry estates are to protest against the ethnic slurs directed at their community by Sri Lanka's Deputy Minister of Labour Relations and Foreign Employment, Mr. Mervyn Silva, during arraignment of the Minister's son Malaka Silva for his alleged confrontation with Police, sources in Nuwara Eliya said. more..

JHU to protest against P-TOMS

Aug 4 (TN) "We have decided to hold island-wide protests against the Post-Tsunami Operations Structure (P-TOMS), we demand holding of elections for Sri Lanka's presidency in 2005, and want immediate suspension of all talks with International community regarding P-TOMS," said Omalpe Sobitha Thera, more..