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Another dangerous, pervasive foreign item corrupting innocent Sri Lankan minds!

July 28 (GV) We are a group of parents who address this letter to you after much thought and discussion. We want to bring to your all-encompassing attention a matter of utmost public interest that concerns current and future generations. First and foremost, we deeply appreciate your personal interest in all matters: nothing seems too small to escape your attention, and nothing appears too large for your intervention. more..

No exam for English medium students at Gampola

July 28 (LT) English medium students from Gampola Educational Zone have not received question papers for the term tests being held these days say reports. As a result the students studying in the English medium have been inconvenienced and they would miss the opportunity of answering a practice paper before the G.C.E. O/L examination to be held this year. The school term tests are conducted by the Ministry of Education of Provincial Councils and more..

Tests for today abandoned in Anuradhapura zone due to unavailability of question papers

July 28 (LT) The term test for students in schools of the zonal education office at Anuradhapura will not be held today as schools had not received question papers due to be given today. The question papers on aesthetic subjects were due to be given for students today but the Principals had to send teachers to the zonal office to get the question papers as they had not received them this morning. more..

I’ll take the people to streets, torch vehicles! – Minister Sirisena

July 28 (LT) It has been decided not to allow sand to be transported outside Polonnaruwa at the Polonnaruwa District Coordinating Committee held yesterday. Minister of Agricultural Development Maithripala Sirisena and Chief Minister of North Central PC Berty Premalala Dissanayake have participated in the committee meeting. Minister Sirisena announcing the decision had said, “ Hereafter don’t issue any permits to transport sand more..

The looted elephant calves in Nilanga’s bicycle shed

July 28 (LT) The location where the two elephant calves from the Elephant Orphanage at Pinnawela were taken to by force on the 25th of this month at 7.00 p.m. by Diyawadana Nilame of the Temple of the Tooth in Kandy Nilanga Dela Bandara deploying the Army and the STF has been revealed to ‘Lankatruth.’ The two calves were taken away stating they would be taken to the Temple of the Tooth. more..

Family problems due to women doing jobs in Middle East - minister

July 28 (CT) The healthy social environment in the country has deteriorated due to Sri Lankan women seeking jobs as housemaids in the Middle East, Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare, Keheliya Rambukwella said. The Minister was speaking in Kandy on July 24 at a programme to create awareness on decentralizing the services of his ministry services. more..

US pledges to be supportive of Sri Lanka’s resettlement efforts

July 28 (AT) Eric Schwartz, Assistant Secretary, Bureau for Population, Refugees of the US Government, welcomed Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s commitment to the resettlement process of the displaced persons in the north, pledged supportive to such resettlement efforts. Schwartz, who is the first high level official from the Obama Administration to visit Sri Lanka, held discussions on Sunday with Sri Lanka President Rajapaksa. more..

After the war what next?

July 28 (ANN) The war has ended. What next is the query on the minds of all Sri Lankans, more specifically a major concern to the Tamil community? The issues are clear and many options are available but which ones will the leadership take? An end of a war or conflict leads to many roads. The choice the State and the citizens take should be one that looks forward with hope for the future and not one that looks backward with anger and vengeance, more..

Return crying babies to weeping mothers!

July 28 (LNP) The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated Mahatma Gandhi. A shocking `abduction` was reported from Pinnawala on Saturday. The army and the police were deployed to tear two tiny baby elephants from their protesting mothers at the behest of Minister of Sports and Recreation Gamini Lokuge, who granted Diyawadane Nilame Nilanga Dela's wish that the little jumbos be donated to the Asgiriya and Malwatte Temples. more..

Teacher released on bail over causing injury to student

July 28 (CT) A woman teacher in a school in Anuradhapura has been freed on two Rs. 200,000 sureties in a case of punishment that led to injury to a student. Additional magistrate Givantha Manchanayake advised the suspect not to interfere with witnesses to the incident. The accused was ordered to appear before court on July 30. A complaint by the student’s father to Galenbindunuwewa Police was followed by the teacher’s arrest. more..

'No hotel inside Sinharaja Reserve'

July 28 (DN) There is no chance for the construction of an "eco-tourist hotel" inside the Sinharaja Forest Reserve or inside its buffer zone, former Chairman Central Environment Authority Udaya Gammanpila said. Dismissing media claims that he had given approval to build a tourist hotel in the country's primary rain forest which holds a large number of endemic flora as "false" and "baseless", more..

Supreme Court considers petition by five MPs

July 28 (CT) The Supreme Court yesterday took up a petition filed by five opposition MPs seeking access to war-displaced people in welfare camps in the north. It has been filed by Jayalath Jayawardena, Lakshman Seneviratne, Mangala Samaraweera, Mano Ganeshana and Hassan Ali. The respondents cited are the defence secretary and several others. Making submissions, the solicitor general’s department sought more time for more..

LTTE cadre with explosives taken in by TID

July 28 (LP) The officers of the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) arrested Pakyaraja Pradeep, a prominent cadre of the LTTE intelligence wing at 170/10, BAPEL Lane, Colombo 02 yesterday (27). Three cyanide capsules were recovered in his possession and after prolonged interrogation, military equipment including high explosive bombs were found hidden in the Air emporium shop at No.20 St. Anthony's Mawatha, Colombo 13. more..

Artistes of Ananda - Poet monks and student writers

July 28 (DN) Of the teacher- poets at Ananda two names come easily to mind - Ven. Kalalelle Ananda Sagara, a Colombo period poet who wrote some of the finest verses at the time under the pseudonym Kayes and U.A.S. Perera or Siri Aiya who conducted a weekly children ‘s program called Lama Theeraya at the then Radio Ceylon. Kayes Hamuduruwo took our Sinhala class and prescribed two of his well-known poetry books, Malhami and Kalakanniya for the class. more..

After the War - What Next?

July 28 (DN) The mistake of making Sinhala only the official language lost the support among the Sinhala people on one side and the Tamil people on the other side. Dr. N. M. Perera and another leader and the Left Movement in general which espoused the cause of Tamil too, saw how racism came up in our country and we have witnessed the consequences thereafter, said Leader of the LSSP and the Minister of Science and Technology Professor Tissa Vitarana. more..

Sri Lanka sees revenue improving with strong tax effort

July 28 (LBO) Central bank said it expects government revenue collection to improve later this year, despite the downturn in the first few months, through better collection, a new Nation Building Tax and reduced tax holidays. Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal said the government was confident of achieving the budget deficit target of seven percent of Gross Domestic Product under the IMF 2.6 billion dollar loan programme. more..

History created as 131 remanded for one incident

July 28 (Island) For the first time in recent history of the Sri Lankan judiciary, a total of 131 suspects were remanded in connection with a high profile single criminal case. Kalutara Chief Magistrate Anura Seneviratne remanded 28 suspects on Sunday and Additional Magistrate Ms Shanthani Dias remanded another 103 yesterday. All of them were arrested in connection with the attack on the Masjidul Rahuman Mosque at Beruwela on Saturday. more..

IMF loan: Sri Lanka to receive first tranche today

July 28 (DN) Central Bank Governor Ajith Cabraal said that IMF will credit Rs USD 332 million to the central bank account today as the first disbursement of the USD 2.6 billion SBA Facility which was a approved by the Executive Board of the IMF last Friday to support country’s Balance of Payments (BOP). Sri Lanka to receive USD 332 million from IMF as the first disbursement of the USD 2.6 billion Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) Facility today. more..

Schools ignore Edu. Min. order, charge exorbitant admission fees

July 28 (Island) Despite an Education Ministry order, to schools island-wide, that except for the facilities fees, no other fees are to be charged from parents to admit their children to Grade I, various types of levies are being made in the name of facilities fees, the JVP charged yesterday. JVP Colombo District Parliamentarian Sunil Handunetti said that a parent had to pay Rs 36,500 recently to admit his child to Grade I in a national school in Colombo. more..

UCG denies JVP charge on University admissions

July 28 (Island) While the JVP charged that students in the Eastern Province who qualified to enter universities have been confined only to the Eastern University, the University Grants Commission denied the allegation stating that those who obtained top marks can apply for a university of their choice. JVP Western Provincial Councillor Duminda Nagamuwa said this restriction imposed by the UGC has compelled qualified students to confine themselves to the Eastern University. more..

Baby tuskers separated from mothers injure themselves

July 28 (Island) One of the two baby tuskers forcibly taken out of the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage from their mothers has broken a tusk and the other is also injured. Sources said yesterday that when the baby elephants were taken into Diyawadana Nilame Niranjan Dela Bandara's residence they were kept in a garage, where one of them charged at the motor cycle and destroyed it. Meanwhile, a senior official at the Department of Wildlife yesterday said they had not authorised the removal more..

Spirit of 'The Hinds'!

July 28 (MoD) Walk into the hangar of No.09 Attack Helicopter Squadron - a.k.a 'The Hinds' - and you are greeted by flying overalls, tech overalls and 'pin heads'. The strength of the merger of green and shades of blue, keeps the gunships flying and the skies safe. The author, delves into the success of the Squadron and writes, "what mattered were - the 'who' in the team, the 'how' of the missions, 'what' the men thought and of course, more..

Govt milking LTTE "gonibilla" to get "carte blanche"

July 28 (TC) Q: The President recently informed India that he would only seek a political solution after seeking the mandate of the people for such a solution at a Presidential election. Would you see this as a further delay in implementing a political solution to the national question, that the UNP accuse the government of adopting? A: This is simply a tactic to buy time. We do not see any necessity to await the next Presidential Elections to provide a political solution to a national question which more..

Cheating depositors: Court remands three F & G Directors

July 28 (DM) Colombo Chief Magistrate Nishantha Hapuarachchi yesterday remanded three Directors of F & G Property Developers Ltd., and in the process released on bail two other Directors. The three Directors namely, Mervin Jayasinghe, Sunil Jayatissa and Mohan Perera were remanded till August 10. Meanwhile, Mrs. Malani Sabaratnam and Samathika Jayasinghe were granted bail fixed at Rs. 100,000 each and also Rs. 10 million on personal bail with two sureties on each of the suspects. more..

Here comes the heyday

July 28 (DM) It’s time for political grandstanding. The news that the APRC proposals are to be out this week will soon see the entire band wagon of politicians getting ready to hog headlines and enter into another long drawn out and perhaps futile debate. The nationalists, pseudo nationalists, quasi-federalists, full federalists and even separatists will spend hours arguing it out, as to why one should endorse or oppose the proposals more..

Dismantling the world of underworld gangs

July 28 (DM) There is no doubt that the challenging task of wiping out the menace of underworld activities that President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his government have undertaken has received wide public acclamation. The people would recall how successive police chiefs throughout vowed to rid the country of the scourge. Some of them succeeded in their efforts, to some extent, while others miserably failed to get anywhere near their objective. more..

TRC to meet internet service providers

July 28 (DM) The Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (TRC) is to meet internet service providers to discus how to block porn websites in Sri Lanka. TRC director general Priyantha Kariyapperuma said he would have to work out some of the technical issues connected to the blocking of such sites. Mr. Kariyapperuma assured that there would not be any restrictions on viewing other websites adding that the TRC would seek help from the Colombo University to design more..

Airtel Lanka achieves one million customers

July 28 (BL) Telecom giant Bharti Airtel on Tuesday said it has achieved one million customer base in Sri Lanka within 171 days of the launch of its services in the Island country. Bharti Airtel Lanka, a subsidiary of Bharti Airtel, is now the fastest growing mobile services operator in the country. “We are pleasantly surprised that we have achieved one million customers in Sri Lanka in a record 171 days time and more..

No ‘adults only’ films hereafter!

July 28 (LT) The government has decided to ban all movies that are labeled ‘Adults only’ says Minister of Cultural Affairs Mahinda Yapa Abeywardene. The minister further said regulations on pogrammes and publications that include obscene scenes would be toughened. He said present regulations would be amended to bring in tough laws that would enable severe penalties for offenders. “The cabinet approval for tough laws on pornography would be obtained soon and all movies with the ‘adults only’ label would be banned in Sri Lanka. more..

US wants focus on early returns

July 28 (IRIN) The return home of almost 300,000 IDPs in Sri Lanka must now be the priority for the government and humanitarian agencies assisting them, says a top US official. “The government of the United States believes the focus now must be on the prompt return of the displaced in safety and dignity, and we want to support and accelerate this process,” Eric Schwartz, US Assistant Secretary of State for Refugees, said more..

End of conflict brings no respite to children from human rights abuses

July 29 (RW) Despite the end of hostilities, children in Sri Lanka continue to be at risk of forced recruitment, arbitrary detention and other human rights abuses, the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers (Coalition) said today. In a new briefing to the Security Council Working Group (Working Group) on Children and Armed Conflict, the Coalition urged the Sri Lankan authorities to act immediately to protect conflict-affected children. more..

Sri Lankan envoy in India heckled

July 29 (LT) The outgoing Deputy High Commissioner for Sri Lanka in South India, P.M. Amza, was heckled by a group of youths as he was leaving the Madras Gymkhana Club after attending a felicitation to mark the end of his tenure here. Mr. Amza was being escorted to his car after the felicitation by the Andhra Chamber of Commerce when the youths, including a woman, assembled in front of the vehicle and raised slogans. more..

Army helps in treatment at Cancer Hospital as nurses strike work

July 29 (CT) Health authorities have deployed Army personnel to treat patients at Cancer Hospital in Maharagama where nurses are striking work. The Health Ministry said most of the demands by nurses connected to the administration of chemotherapy treatment have been fulfilled. That is except for a request for the payment of a Rs. 10,000 allowance, which cannot be met due to prevailing financial constraints. more..

500,000 pilgrims expected to visit Madhu Marian shrine

July 29 (UCAN) The Sri Lankan government has declared "no limits" on the number of pilgrims allowed to visit the revered Madhu shrine for the August feast of the Assumption. Around 500,000 are expected to travel to the 400-year-old Shrine of Our Lady of Madhu in Mannar diocese. The shrine lies in a jungle area where government and Tamil rebel forces fought several battles during the 25-year civil war that the government says ended with the rebels' defeat in May. more..

MPs 'have a right' to meet IDPs

July 29 (BBC) The Supreme Court in Sri Lanka says it accepts the right of parliamentarians to access the Internally Displaced People’s (IDP) camps but has to give time to government to consider its position on the grounds of national security. The court made the observation as a petition filed by United National Party (UNP) parliamentarians against the government ban on accessing the camps was taken for hearing on Monday. more..

Senior LTTE intelligence operative arrested

July 29 (PTI) A top LTTE intelligence operative was nabbed by the authorities on Tuesday from the national capital along with high explosives, months after the group was annihilated by Sri Lankan Army. Pakyaraja Pradeep, a prominent LTTE member, was arrested by the Terrorist Investigation Department (TID) and when overpowered was carrying cyanide capsules. The intelligence officials are questioning the man whether he was in the capital to carry out any suicide attack. more..

Militarization of Sri Lankas

Sri Lanka insurance sector grows in tight conditions

July 29 (LBO) Sri Lanka's life insurance sector grew 13.9 percent taking in gross written premiums of 23.6 billion rupees in 2008, a year that saw high inflation, a report by the industry regulator, Insurance Board of Sri Lanka (IBSL) said. The life insurance sector grew 21.2 percent in 2007. Ceylinco Insurance Life, a unit of Sri Lanka's troubled Ceylinco Group, has grown 34.97 percent beating the sector's growth of 13.9 percent in the 2008 financial year 2008. more..

Mervyn to bring UNP’s Justin to the government

July 29 (LNW) Labor Minister Mervyn Silva is expected to go to Matara on Saturday to bring in Opposition Leader of the Southern Provincial Council, Justin Galappaththi to the government, reliable sources told Lanka News Web. Galappaththi is to hold an alms giving to the maha sangha on Saturday at his residence in Pimburana, Matara. Silva is expected to participate at the event as a special representative of the President. more..

Free civilians from detention camps

July 29 (HRW) The Sri Lankan government should immediately release the more than 280,000 internally displaced Tamil civilians held in detention camps in northern Sri Lanka, Human Rights Watch said today. The government, in violation of international law, has since March 2008 confined virtually all civilians displaced by the fighting between government forces and the separatist LTTE in detention camps, euphemistically called “welfare centers” by the government. more..

Sri Lanka in ADB south Asia tourism project

July 29 (LBO) Sri Lanka has been included in an Asian Development Bank funded project to link and promote tourist sites in south Asian countries, especially for eco-tourism and pilgrimage tourism. A report by the ADB said the project was conceived as a linked series of sub-regional tourism investments in the five countries - Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The projects are aimed at better positioning South Asia and more..

Tamil aspirations and 13th Amendment-2

July 29 (BL) The 13th Amendment continues to be the focus of public debate despite the announcement by Minister Tissa Vitharana, the chairman of the All Party Representative Committee (APRC) that its proposals for a durable political solution will be submitted to President Mahinda Rajapaksa this week. The APRC proposals will form the basis for the search for the final solution which may be a time- consuming exercise. more..

Establishing a balance between performance and promise

July 29 (BL) The World Bank in a report released recently, notes that serious shortcomings of the higher education system must be revised if Sri Lanka is to achieve its development potential. The report titled, “Performance, Peril and Promise of Higher Education in Sri Lanka” highlights the bottlenecks of a public education system that is struggling to deal with the challenges of a fast evolving world. more..

Govt to unveil National Political Agenda

July 29 (BL) Government will unveil a National Political Agenda at the forthcoming SLFP National Conference that is likely to contain a political solution to the ethnic question in addition to broader economic development and reconciliation measures. SLFP General Secretary Maithreepala Sirisena noted that a National Political Agenda would be presented at the forthcoming 19th National Conference of the SLFP on September 1. more..

15 cinemas in North and East to be resurrected

July 29 (BL) Plans are in place to resurrect the 15 cinemas in the North and East, many of which have been ravaged by the war. National Film Corporation Chairman Jayantha Dharmadasa said, “We are in the process of renewing the registration of many of these cinemas; some have been closed down while others have disappeared completely.” The restoration of these cinemas will be handled by Rithma Enterprises, which is the distribution arm of the NFC. more..

Revolutionary savings accounts for senior citizens from Sampath Bank

July 29 (BL) Sampath Bank is launching a special savings account for senior citizens under Sanhinda Saver, creating another revolution in the banking industry. The new “Sampath Sanhinda Saver” account can be operated in Sri Lankan Rupees or foreign currency as per the choice of the account holder. A truly unique and attractive feature of the new account scheme is that interest will be paid twice a month for this account. more..

Sri Lanka tobacco users generate more taxes, sales lower

July 29 (LBO) Sri Lanka's Ceylon Tobacco Company, which is the monopoly legal producer of cigarettes in the country, said profits grew in the June 2009 quarter, even as volumes fell and the government earned more revenue from taxes. The company, a British American Tobacco unit, said in a stock exchange filing that gross revenue rose 5.2 percent to 14.6 billion rupees during the period and profits grew 44 percent to 769 million rupees. more..

India needs to work with IC - Former Indian diplomat

July 29 (TN) India has a common interest with the US in countering China’s strategy. No matter the motives behind the US’ current emphasis on a “political settlement”, after having been a staunch supporter of Rajapaksa’s war, Delhi must closely work with the Barack Obama Administration, writes former Indian diplomat M. Bhadrakumar, who sees Delhi’s political leverage over Colombo diminishing in what he thinks ‘post-LTTE’ era. more..

PM meets Ugandan President

July 29 (GDI) Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka met with the Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni, for talks on bilateral relations on July 27 during the former’s visit to Uganda to attend the International Smart partnership Dialogue 2009. The two leaders met in the Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort outside the Ugandan Capital, Kampala. The resort was developed on the shores of Lake Victoria to host the Commonwealth Summit in 2007. more..

'Sathosa' opened in Jaffna for the third time

July 29 (TN) Bandula Gunawardena, Sri Lanka’s Minister of Trade, Marketing Development Cooperative and Consumer Affairs, declared open a branch of Lanka Sathosa, a branch of the CWE, in Jaffna Windsor Theatre Tuesday, sources in Jaffna said. Sathosa was opened in Jaffna twice before but had been closed down as the government failed to send goods to keep it functioning, the sources added. more..