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The Sri Lankan Model

Feb 7 (LG) The President has said that he is interested in devolving power within a Sri Lankan model and not according to some other model. It may be assumed that by this statement he has ruled out the much favoured Indian model and the so called British model. The Indian model is supposed to be pseudo federal while the British model could be called pseudo unitary. Thus the President in his wisdom appears to be thinking of something else. more..

Looking at science from a Buddhist standpoint

Feb 7 (LG) Why look at modern science from a Buddhist standpoint and not the other way around? That is, rather than Buddhism from a Scientific perspective. The reasons are twofold. In the first instance, the total knowledge system spawned by the teachings of the Gautama Buddha and by 2500 plus years of Buddhist philosophy, debates, controversies and ethical practices, remains broader and more open than today’s science is, I will justify this in the course of this lecture. more..

Ancient capitals of Sri Lanka

Feb 7 (LG) The powerful influence exercised by the Buddhist religion over Sri Lanka is particularly clear in what remains of the former capitals, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa. Anuradhapura was originally a village in which Anuradha, one of the followers of Vijaya, the traditional first king of Sri Lanka, lived. Three generations later, Pandukabhaya, who succeeded to the throne, made Anuradhapura his capital in 437 BC, and laid the foundations of a beautiful and large city. more..

MIMT to offer employment oriented courses for rural youth

Feb 7 (F2F) Sri Lanka’s Industrial giant MAS Holdings, is now planning to get into the field of education. The company is planning to train 2,000 people annually in its textile zone in Thulhiriya, from this month. To enter into this venture, the company has made huge investments. The MAS Institute of Management Technology (MIMT) is a BOI company which trains rural youth with its employment oriented courses which aimed at providing employment opportunities for young people in under privileged areas. more..

Like Jesus on the Cross, Sri Lanka thirsts for justice

Feb 7 (AN) "Like Jesus on the Cross, Sri Lanka thirsts. For justice, for love, for peace". In his message for Lent, Harold Anthony Perera, bishop of Galle and president of the national justice and peace commission, tries to explain to the faithful the importance of enduring the pain inflicted by the civil war underway in the country, taking the sacrifice of Christ as their example and motivation for hope. more..

Record Crowds at 60th Independence Day in Los Angeles

Feb 7 (AT) Sri Lankans in record numbers, joyous beyond belief, jubilant, even frenzied at times, gave a positive response to the ravages of brutal terrorism faced by their motherland. The sixtieth Independence Day presented by the Consular General Jaliya Wickramasuriya and his staff was an unqualified success. At the announcement “at this very moment the President and the people of Sri Lanka will be honoring our heroic troops at the Independence Day parade at Galle Face, the crowd roared in appreciation with thunderous applause. more..

Fund cut for rights probe

Feb 7 (BBC) Funds allocated for a Presidential Commission probing serious human rights violations to be reduced, Sri Lanka government has announced. Chairman of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Serious Violations of Human Rights told BBC Sandeshaya that the Commission has received a circular from the government. Retired Supreme Court Justice Nissanka Udalagama told BBC Sandeshaya that the secretary has resigned after receiving the circular from the Presidential Secretariat. more..

Hartal against 'LTTE bomb attacks'

Feb 7 (BBC) A Hartal protest called by a Tamil political party has paralysed the northern Sri Lankan town of Vavuniya on Wednesday. The protest was called by political party turned former militant group PLOTE against recent bomb attacks targeting civilians allegedly by the LTTE. Shops and government offices were closed and the town was deserted as a result of the Hartal. more..

Bishops repeat call for 'peace zone' after terror attack

Feb 7 (ENI) Church leaders in Sri Lanka have repeated demands for a "peace zone" around the popular Roman Catholic shrine at Madhu near Mannar in the north of the country after an anti-personnel mine killed 18 Catholics and injured many more near the religious site. "It is sad that the government and the LTTE [Tamil rebels] have not responded positively to the repeated requests to declare the area around the Madhu church as a peace zone," more..

Flag’s terrorism links under question

Feb 7 (EC) The York University Tamil Students’ Association (YUTSA) has passed a motion to use the Tamil Eelam flag to represent the organization in the future and during the university’s Multicultural Week. Despite the flag’s close affiliation with the LTTE, YUTSA, as well as representatives of the York administration, have ruled against the notion that it is associated with the nationally recognized terrorist group. more..

Sangaree and Simon Hughes brush shoulder at Sri Lanka Independence Day celebration in London

Feb 7 (AT) Sri Lanka’s Tamil United Liberation Front leader V. Ananda Sangaree, Britains Liberal Democratic leader Simon Hughes, Labour Party state Minister Stephen Timms and British parliamentarians Steven Hammon and Andrew George were among the distinguished people who converged on London’s Sri Lanka High Commission to wish Sri Lanka their best wishes on the nation’s 60th Independence Day anniversary. more..

Let Us Act As a Sovereign State

Feb 7 (LG) For the first time since 1977, Sri Lanka is making an attempt to act as a sovereign state. Though the non aligned nations do not exercise any influence in world politics, as they are now not aligned only to USA, the get-together of the leaders showed how much respect each state was able to command from the others. In recent times Sri Lanka has stood well up to the might not only of the so called international community, but of India as well. more..

Independence events in the Diaspora

Feb 7 (LG) The Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslim communities of Sri Lanka celebrated the 60th Independence celebrations in the Sri Lankan Diaspora in their own ways. The Sri Lankan government considered it as a national event and all the Sri Lankan High Commissions and Embassies celebrated in the traditional manner. The events were attended by cross sections of the Sri Lankan community. LTTE on its part organized protest functions in some countries. more..

President and his elite rejoice and revel at Temple Trees while masses were facing a bloodbath

Feb 7 (SLW) The President, his brothers, Ministers, MPs, Leading Lawyers and businessmen saw no qualms about having a lavish sumptuous party among a selected elite on 4th night at temple Trees, even as the entire populace outside were either falling victims to bomb explosions or struggling just for a square meal unable even to go about because of abject fear and panic. more..

Enmity is never appeased by enmity

Feb 7 (SLW) When I read the article written by Mr. Jayasingam under the caption of 'Tamils are the victims of Sri Lanka' I felt that he is under the misguidance of what is really happening in Sri Lanka or he is deliberately trying to paint a different story whitewashing the LTTE. He criticized Mr. Ranil Wicramasinghe's peace agreement citing baseless accusations. But entire world know how Prabahakaran maliciously deceived RW to re group and build up his Military. more..

Media threats hurt Sri Lanka rights - Amnesty

Feb 7 (Reuters) Attacks and threats against Sri Lanka's media are creating a culture of silence and lack of dissent just as abductions, killings and rights abuses rise in the island's civil war, Amnesty International said on Thursday. The rights group said in a report that at least 10 media workers -- mostly from the ethnic Tamil minority -- have been killed in the last two years as a 2002 ceasefire between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels collapsed into all-out war. more..

Sri Lankans in Washington DC Celebrate Sixtieth Independence Day in Grand Style

Feb 7 (AT) The State Dance Ensemble added an aura of grandeur to the celebration of Sri Lanka’s 60th Anniversary of Independence in Washington DC, which was almost palpable. The event was held on February 3, 2008, amidst a large gathering of expatriates in the Greater Washington area, and officials of the administration, as well as NGOs, think tanks and media. It was held at the University of the District of Columbia in Washington DC. more..

Bombings ahead of independence day rattle people further

Feb 7 (UCAN) A series of bomb attacks targeting civilians ahead of Independence Day left Sri Lankans fearful and wondering what freedom they really have, according to Catholics around the country. A Feb. 3 suicide bombing at Colombo's Fort Railway Station on the harbor front distressed Father Ivan Perera of the archbishop's house, central Colombo. It killed nine people, mostly youths, and injured 100. more..

Manpower Agency Pays Compensation for Maid’s Death

Feb 7 (AN) A diamond necklace worth SR4,000 and SR3,500 in cash is part of the compensation that will be given to a Sri Lankan woman whose daughter starved to death in October 2005 while working as a maid in the Kingdom. Al-Nashwan Recruiting Company in Riyadh handed over the compensation to W.S.M.S. Wijesundera, charge d’affaires at the Sri Lankan Embassy, yesterday. The money and jewelry will reportedly be sent to the maid’s mother, Ratnaseeli, to help more..

President’s brother-in-law refused entry to Bauddhaloka Mawatha

Feb 7 (LD) Dr. Lalith Chandradasa, a brother-in-law of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has been refused permission to enter Bauddhaloka Mawatha, which is presently closed for the ‘Deyata Kirula’ exhibition, reports say. Chandradasa, husband of the President’s sister Preethi, was on his way to ‘Otters Club’ on Feb. 04th when Police refused to allow him to pass through. He was told to obtain a pass from Cinnamon Gardens Police. more..

Sri Lanka gets more tobacco taxes for less harm

Feb 7 (LBO) Sri Lanka's government has got more tax revenue while reducing deadly tobacco sales under a new policy to trim the harm from tobacco on the population, results of the island's top producer showed. Ceylon Tobacco Company a British American Tobacco company, which is minority-owned by Phillip Morris had also increased its own revenues and profits even as volumes fell. Gross revenue for the year rose to 46.5 billion from 42.8 billion rupees while more..

Conspiracy to get international military mediation in the country! – JVP

Feb 7 (LT) A conspiracy to get an international military mediation in the country is being launched by the UNO and several INGOs affiliated to it states Leader of the Parliamentary Group of the JVP Wimal Weerawansa. He made this revelation in making a special statement in the Parliament yesterday. He said the conspiracy has been launched through International Centre for Ethnic Studies in collaboration of Dr. Radhika Coomaraswamy. more..

The consignment of High Protein Biscuits to be released

Feb 7 (LT) Reports reaching "Lanka Truth" say that a plan is underway to release the consignment of high protein biscuits taken into custody at the Madawachchiya check point recently while being transported to Kilinochchiya by the World Food Programme. This container of biscuits has by now been sent to government food department stores in Vaunia. When contacted by us in this regard, Anuradapura Police said that the container is now in their custody and it will not be released under any circumstance. more..

30 suicide bombers sent to South to hamper operations in Wanni

Feb 7 (LT) Security Forces have received information that about 30 suicide tiger cadres have infiltrated into the southern parts of the country. This information has been obtained when two priests arrested in Saliyapura and Nuwara-eliya areas were questioned. Under interrogation the two priests have confessed that they had brought down 30 suicide cadres from Mannar to Kandy and Nuwara-eliya towns. more..

No Military Solution to Crisis in Sri Lanka – Britain

Feb 7 (LG) U.K. Foreign Secretary David Miliband while urging all in Sri Lanka to take steps to safeguard the civilian population and find ways to reduce the violence, called for a political process to end the conflict. 'The 60th anniversary of Sri Lankan independence is a time to reflect on the health and welfare of the nation and its people as it moves forward in the 21st century. The cycle of violence in Sri Lanka has worsened in recent weeks. more..

Highest honor bestowed on late leaders of the country is to extend support to eradicate the terrorism

Feb 7 (AT) President Mahinda Rajapakse says anybody who respects former President Ranasinghe Premadasa should extend support to eliminate tiger terrorism, as his life was lost due to tiger terrorism. The President made these remarks at the opening of a drawing of former President Premadasa in parliament on Thursday. President Mahinda Rajapaksa unveiled the portrait of late President Ranasinghe Premadasa in the parliament on February 7. more..

Rajitha asks UNP supporters to decide future of their leader

Feb 7 (LD) Supporters of the UNP should decide whether they will continue to follow the leadership of Ranil Wickremesinghe and make the UNP a party of the past or whether to convert it into an active party under a new leadership, said Minister Rajitha Senaratne. The member of the UNP Democratic Group noted that an opinion survey report published in a weekend English newspaper gave what position the incumbent head of the UNP occupies as a political leader. more..

A.V. Suraweera accused of swindling Rs. 13 m

Feb 7 (LD) Professor A.V. Suraweera, former Deputy Minister of Cultural and Religious Affairs, was produced before the Colombo Chief Magistrate’s Court today on the charge of swindling more than Rs. 1,380,000 during his office as Director General of the Central Cultural Fund. The Bribery Commission had arrested him under the charge of fraudulently passing the said amount purportedly on tenders for conserving roads with historical significance in Colombo. more..

"Human Rights violators will be brought to book" – Mahinda Samarasinghe

Feb 7 (GDI) Minister of Disaster Management and Human Rights said in Parliament today (07) that the Human Rights Council in Geneva had not tabled any document detrimental to the country and therefore Sri Lanka stands cleared of all accusations made by parties with special interests. The minister made these observations on the occasion of the debate in parliament on the Commission of Inquiry (Amendment) Act. more..

Bomb victims receive compensation

Feb 7 (GDI) Next-of-kin of those killed and those injured in the Fort Railway Station bomb blast were granted compensation by the Ministry of Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services yesterday (06). The compensation was handed over at the Colombo National Hospital on behalf of 14 victims who were killed and 103 who were wounded in the terrorist attack. The bereaved families received compensation from the Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services Minister Rishard Badhiyudeen. more..

Salary hike for SL migrant workers in Saudi Arabia

Feb 7 (GDI) Responding positively to a request made by the Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare, Keheliya Rambukwella, the Government of Saudi Arabia has agreed to increase the wages of Sri Lankan migrant domestic workers by 60 percent. Accordingly the monthly salary of a domestic worker will be increased to Saudi Riyal (SAR) 600-650 amounting to SL Rupees 17250- 18680, with effect from April 1st. more..

Special traffic plan for Deyata Kirula exhibition

Feb 7 (GDI) The special traffic plan that came into effect in and around Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo at 6 a.m. today (February 7) will continue until 6 a.m. on February 11 on account of the Deyata Kirula exhibition held from today to February 10, the Media Centre for National Security announced yesterday. Under this plan public transport entering Bauddhaloka Mawatha from Kanatta Roundabout should proceed along Kynsey Road and either Gregory's Road or Horton Place. more..

"Deyata Kirula" Opens

Feb 7 (GDI) The Deyata Kirula Exhibition, which focuses on the Government's development efforts, was declared open this morning at the BMICH and the Sirimavo Bandaranayaika Convention Centre. A unique feature at this mega exhibition is the 'Media Zone' where all the Sri Lankan Media Institutions have been brought under one umbrella with due respect to each other's identity in a move to initiate a new media culture. more..

Measures for protection of commuters

Feb 7 (GDI) The Transport Ministry on the instructions of Minister Dallas Alahapperuma has taken certain measures to protect its commuters in the event of any suspicious operations that would pose a threat to its commuters. These measures have been taken with bus as well as train trvellers including school children and office workers in mind as against any possible LTTE attacks. more..

In response to attacks on `soft targets` forces quicken bid to take Vanni

Feb 7 (LNP) A spate of attacks on soft targets in the South has forced the government to step up the ongoing combined security forces campaign to bring the entire Vanni region under its control. Although the government has repeatedly assured that the military wouldn t be set a deadline, the recent wave of violence directed at civilians and economic targets, mainly in the Moneragala district and the capital, has necessitated reappraisal of the strategy, authoritative sources said. more..

Sole survivor of Talaimannar attack reveals Indian trawlers involvement

Feb 7 (LNP) A sailor who survived Monday's surprise attack on the Navy by two Indian trawlers north of Talaimannar had said that the attackers fired three rounds of rocket propelled grenades and small arms at their ill-fated boat. According to him, the attackers had opened fire at almost point blank range as their boat responded to distress signals and approached the trawler. The sole survivor of the seven-man crew, of the locally built boat, had clearly identified the trawlers as that of the Indian fishing fleet. more..

Ranil exposed to danger

Feb 7 (LNP) The UNP yesterday requested in Parliament the Government to increase the security of Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe due to the present volatile security situation. UNP Parliamentarian Ravi Karunanayake told the House that he was astonished to see Mr. Wickremesinghe arriving in an ordinary vehicle to pay his last respects to the students of D.S. Senanayake Maha Vidyalaya killed in the recent bomb blast at the Colombo Fort Railway station. more..

That gentleman in the gallery

Feb 7 (LNP) We had a true son of the soil in Parliament on Tuesday. Uruvarige Vanniyale Aththo is his name. He is the present Veddha Chief. Bare-chested and sporting a long beard with grey streaks, he walked up to the Speaker s gallery with his characteristic aplomb with his trade mark axe on the shoulder and sat there somewhat bemused. Parliament was thus graced by the presence of a real leader after a lapse of decades! more..

Saudi grant for Kinniya

Feb 7 (SAMN) Relations between Saudi Arabia and Sri Lanka remain strong and the Kingdom has always stood by Sri Lanka in times of need, Muhammad A. Tayeb, Director General at the Foreign Ministry's Office for Makkah Region, said. "The Saudi Fund for Development recently granted SR40 million to construct a 400-metre-long bridge in Kinniya," he said as chief guest at the national day reception for diplomats, officials and businessmen hosted by Sri Lankan Consul General Abdul Latiff Mohamed Lafeer. more..

TNA calls for genuine proposals

Feb 7 (SAMN) While stating that the proper cooperation of the two main parties can bring about an effective solution, the TNA in Parliament Wednesday called on the two major parties to come up with a genuine set of proposals to resolve the national issue. Speaking during the emergency debate in the House TNA Parliamentary group leader R. Sampanthan said the government should come clean and stop all dirty games. more..

'Govt to dispel fears in Batti polls'

Feb 7 (SAMN) The preliminary report of the People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) on the forth coming local council elections in Batticaloa urged the Government to make a credible demonstration of its capacity to control violence and dispel the fears of the people regarding the possible use of arms by some of the contesting parties. PAFFREL also demanded that civil society be active in the period leading to the elections and organize fact-finding visits and encourage voters to affirm their democratic rights. more..

New ID for disabled

Feb 7 (SAMN) The Ministry of Social Services and Social Welfare is looking forward to introduce a new Identification Card for persons with disabilities through the Department of Registration of Persons. Social Services Minister Douglas Devananda who is also the Chairman of the National `Council for Persons with disabilities said he is to submit a memorandum seeking Cabinet approval to introduce this new Identity Card immediately. more..

Courts activities in Jaffna stall

Feb 7 (TN) Cases in Jaffna peninsula courts are stalling due to the insecure situation as plaintiffs and witnesses fail to show up for inquires in fear of reprisals from members of the armed forces of Sri Lanka government and the paramilitaries who operate with them, legal society sources in Jaffna said. Many cases taken up for inquiries are being continuously postponed due to the absence of the plaintiffs and witnesses, and lack of police reports which are crucial in many homicide and abduction cases, more..

Leopard skins, rhino horns seized from businessmen

Feb 7 (DN) Wildlife officers have detained two businessmen for illegally possessing four leopard skins and a couple of Rhino horns. The articles were taken into custody from the millionaire businessmen who have kept them without any valid documents, said sources at the Environment Ministry's Wildlife Department. The businessman with leopards skins in his possession was arrested from Mount Lavinia on Tuesday. more..

Defeating terrorism, Govt's sole intention - PM

Feb 7 (DN) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka yesterday told Parliament that the Government's sole intention is to defeat terrorism militarily and bring sustainable peace through a solution provided in accordance with the Constitution. The Premier speaking at the Emergency Debate, said even the international community has accepted that terrorism should be defeated in the country. "Our responsibility is to understand this trend and face it," he said. more..

Paddy marketing and price of rice

Feb 7 (Island) This country is today facing a crisis regarding' the rising price of rice and the Government is finding it difficult to control this trend. It is time we studied this question for a solution to the problem without blaming each other and to ensure both farmers and consumers got a fair deal without being exploited by a handful of middlemen or rice mill owners. Of the total production only about 21.4 percent is consumed by the producers (farmers) while the balance, nearly 78 percent goes to the market to feed the consumers. more..

BoC to capitalise on Insurance Act

Feb 7 (Island) An amendment to the insurance act which will allow bank staff to directly engage in selling insurance will help boost the agriculture sector Gamini Wickramasinghe, Chairman Bank of Ceylon, said. "The parliament should pass the amendment in a month’s time and Bank of Ceylon will be in a better position to help the farmer community by providing loans tied up with repayment insurance policies," he said. more..

12 candidates abducted

Feb 7 (DM) The UNP charged yesterday in Parliament that 28 persons including 12 candidates have been abducted in the Eastern Province after nominations were called for the local council elections. UNP Parliamentarian Lakshman Seneviratne made this charge while speaking during the emergency debate yesterday. Mr. Seneviratne said that 68 persons had been abducted in the east during the past three months. more..

Presidential Secretariat says CoI salaries reduced due to circular

Feb 7 (DM) In response to the Daily Mirror lead news item on February 06, 2008 the Presidential Secretariat has sent the following explanation: Our attention is drawn to the prominent news item on page 01 in the Daily Mirror of today headlined “Rights probe on verge of collapse”, which makes a series of incorrect statements regarding the Presidential Commission of Inquiry investigating cases of Human Rights, and alleging step motherly treatment to the Commission by the Presidential Secretariat. more..

Lankan trade delegation to arrive tomorrow

Feb 7 (TP) A second trade delegation representing the construction industry in Sri Lanka is scheduled to arrive here tomorrow. The visit, organised by the Chamber of Construction Industry of Sri Lanka (CCI), follows the success achieved by the first Sri Lankan trade delegation that visited Qatar in November last year, a Sri Lankan embassy official said yesterday. more..