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Protect Lanka war survivors: Jaggi Vasudev

Nov 15 (EB) Rather than lamenting what has happened in Sri Lanka, it would be better to try and protect the Tamils who survived the terrible war there, said Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, founder of Isha Foundation and spiritual master, here on Saturday. Addressing a gathering after releasing ‘Eelam-Mounathin Vali,’ a compilation of poetry by 100 renowned personalities from all walks of life (including Jaggi Vasudev, actors Kamal Haasan, Surya, Prakash Raj, more..

Mannar, the drama of 2 thousand widows with no means to survive

Nov 15 (SN) Marginalized by society, the object of scorn, deprived of a job, often with young children or elderly dependents and no economic support. This is the condition of more than 2 thousand widows in the district of Mannar in northern Sri Lanka, who are living a double tragedy: they have lost their husbands in many cases to the war, and have been abandoned by the government. And, in the heart, they have only one desire: " to start living like everyone else." more..

'You can live in peace and harmony '

Nov 15 (MoD) "Never in the future will there be a situation of terror and disharmony. You can live in peace without fear. The Government has launched `Navodayam' development program in the East and 'Vasantham' program in the North. Democratic governance has been restored in the North and East. I am your friend and let us unite to build up our motherland." These were the words President Mahinda Rajapaksa spoke in flawless Tamil addressing more..

South Indian MPs were prevented from meeting expelled Muslim refugees in Jaffna

Nov 15 (PSM) "Indian MPs from Tamil Nadu who visited Sri Lanka recently were not allowed to meet recently resettled expelled Muslim refugees when they visited Jaffna. The Jaffna Government Agent deliberately failed to mention about these Muslim refugees in his recent interview to an Autralian media. The Muslim political leaders also turn blind eye to the plight of the expelled Jaffna Muslims". more..

Henry the uncrowned king

Nov 15 (ST) Azdak in Unuwataye Kathawa. Piyal in Gamperaliya. Sudu Seeya in Doo Daruwo. These three characters symbolise the sea of talent that versatile actor Henry Jayasena possessed in the three visual media — the theatre, cinema and television. The curtain call has come. Henry is no more. Professor Ediriweera Sarachchandra who picked Henry to play Prince Maname once paid this tribute to him: more..

'Sri Lanka a peaceful nation'

Nov 15 (GDI) The United Nations has said that Sri Lanka’s war has ended and the country is peaceful. It claims that the government’s forward march is successful. Aje Chhibber, USAID Asia Pacific Director said the support of the international community to rebuild Sri Lanka is very essential. Technical as well as financial assistance is of special importance. The Sri Lanka Government had assured the United Nations that resettlement will be completed by January. more..

Trade union of Water Board consider strike action

Nov 15 (LT) The Alliance of Trade Unions of the Water Board is to meet tomorrow to discuss further action regarding the failure of the government to take any action regarding ‘work to rule,’ trade union action carried out by employees of Water Board together with employees of CPC, Port and CEB. The co-convener of the Alliance Upali Ratnayake, states despite the ‘work to rule’ campaign trade union of the Water Board carrying out its trade union action more..

Thirteen theses: Lanka's lessons for the world

Nov 15 (TC) “Will Sri Lanka win the peace?” was a question posed by Singapore’s Minister of Law, K Chanmugam, opening the 5th International Conference on South Asia organized by the ISAS of the National University of Singapore last week. The President of Singapore, SR Nathan closed the proceedings, launching South Asia Link, a hub for networking the 30 million strong worldwide South Asian Diaspora. more..

The report stating he met SLFP secretary is a blatant lie – Tilvin Silva

Nov 15 (LT) The report published that he had met the Secretary General of the SLFP is a blatant lie says General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva. Mr. Silva said this when ‘Lankatruth’ asked him regarding the lead news of ‘Irida Lakbima’ under the headline "ශ්žරීලනිප-ජවිපෙ ලේකම්වරුන් අතර සාකච්ඡාවක්" (A discussion between secretaries of the SLFP & the JVP). Mr. Silva said there was no truth in the news item and more..

'Insult to Gen. Fonseka is an insult to the whole nation'

Nov 15 (LT) The villainous act carried out by an organized gang by insulting Chief of Defense Staff Gen. Sarath Fonseka, when he visited Kelaniya Rajamaha Viharaya for religious observances, is an insult to the whole nation states Patriotic National Centre (PNC) issuing an announcement. The announcement signed by President of PNC, eminent archeologist and Senior Lecturer Ven. Dhambara Amila Thero states: “We condemn and abhor the villainous act carried out more..

Tamil Diaspora shows thumbs down to the President

Nov 15 (LG) President Mahinda Rajapakse’s effort to rope in significant section of the affluent Tamils have miserably failed and the Sri Lankan foreign missions had to go out of the way to scramble a group of Sri Lankans to attend the highly publicised development meeting in Colombo. The government became desperate lately and requested all its immediate loyal contacts to assemble some Tamils for the meeting. more..

A Hero’s Resignation: Triumph, Tragedy and Farce

Nov 15 (TC) First there was triumph – of the army over the LTTE. Then came the tragedy - the encampment of 300,000 people. And now the farce – an establishment divided, the resignation of a war hero, and all but the announcement of a premature presidential race. The outgoing General Sarath Fonseka’s letter of resignation, written with military license, is perfectly professional in tone and duly submissive to his civilian authority. more..

Defence Secretary advocates reconciliation and development

Nov 15 (MoD) Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa yesterday called on all patriotic Sri Lankans to get together, putting their differences aside, and work towards the resurgence of the nation to reap the rewards of peace as one people. "This is our duty to our motherland, and we must not let her down", the Defence Secretary said in his concluding remarks after delivering the Olcott oration, under more..

Ultra left in quandary over presidential candidate

Nov 15 (LG) The JVP is today an important force within the working class movement. That has to be accepted, even though it cannot be classified as a proletarian party. Its origin and major association, is with the Sinhala petty bourgeoisie. Both in ‘71 and in ‘89, the JVP struggle dominated the Sinhala petty bourgeois society. In addition, in such intense campaigns the JVP always displayed its hatred towards the Tamil struggle for freedom and self-determination. more..

Malini chosen best actress in Italy

Nov 15 (AD) Sri Lankan actress Malini Fonseka has won the ‘Best Actress’ award for her role as ‘Sandhya Rani’ in the film Prasanna Vithanage’s ‘Akasa Kusum – Flowers from the Sky’ Levante International film festival in Italy. ‘Akasa Kusum’ is the story about Sandhya Rani (Malini Fonseka) an ageing film star who was once the darling of the silver screen. Having lost fame and fortune in a changing world, she now lives quietly in obscurity. more..

SLAF chief the new CDS?

Nov 15 (AD) Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) Commander Air Chief Marshal Roshan Goonetilleke is tipped to be the next Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) after the retirement of General Sarath Fonseka, say government sources. General Fonseka’s service in the Sri Lanka Army was to end in December. But after being appointed CDS in July this year, technically he had the opportunity of serving for another two years in the post. more..

Mammoth crowd expected at SLFP National Convention

Nov 15 (SO) Thousands of SLFP provincial leaders and representatives will assemble at the Kettarama grounds in Colombo today for the SLFP National Convention to be presided over by President Mahinda Rajapaksa. SLFP General Secretary and Agriculture Development and Agrarian Services Minister Maithripala Sirisena said the SLFP which respects public opinion - its leaders and representatives will be asked for their views on the holding of elections. more..

Free stock of A/H1N1 vaccine due

Nov 15 (SO) Sri Lanka is expected to receive a free stock of Influenza A/H1N1 vaccine from the World Health Organisation (WHO) in the coming weeks, Consultant Epidemiologist Dr. Risintha Premaratne of the Epidemiological Unit of the Health Ministry said yesterday. A leading multinational drug company manufacturing the flu vaccine donated 50 million phials to the WHO last week to be distributed among the developing countries to fight the menace and more..

New reservoirs to feed thirsty land

Nov 15 (SO) The government has embarked on a massive development program to alleviate poverty and uplift the living standards of people residing in the Maha-Oya area to be in par with those living at the Gal Oya valley, Girandurukotte and the Senanayake Samudraya. The Irrigation Department has undertaken to build several reservoirs to provide water to farmers and to resettle displaced persons affected by the development work being carried out. more..

SLAF Museum, a nostalgic memory

Nov 15 (SO) From the ‘Tiger Moth’ to the ‘Balliol’ and the ‘Auster’, from the ‘SIAI Machetti’ to ‘Pucaras’ and to jets - the wings of the Sri Lanka Air Force that protected our skies since early ‘50s stand with solemn pride, carrying distinctive stories representing different chapters of the Sri Lankan aviation history at the newly opened Sri Lanka Air Force Museum at the Ratmalana SLAF base. The museum is receiving a large crowd of enthusiastic spectators daily and more..

Lanka’s rehabilitation approach a role model

Nov 15 (SO) Prof. Rohan Gunaratne, the international counter terrorism expert said Sri Lanka’s humane approach to rehabilitating ex-LTTE terrorists could be a role model to the world. He said that majority of ex-LTTEers hate the LTTE and deplore violence. And that it was imperative that the government develop a state of the art security and intelligence service to ensure that the LTTE would not revive ever again. more..

Sri Lanka refugees can stay for 3 months: Indonesia

Nov 15 (AFP) A group of 22 Sri Lankan asylum seekers who left an Australian customs ship to come ashore in Indonesia will be allowed to stay for up to three months, according to an official. "We've given them a time frame of four weeks to at most 12 weeks to stay in Indonesia to process their refugee status. They must leave after that," foreign ministry spokesman Teuku Faizasyah told AFP. more..

Two opposition horses in the race

Nov 15 (NS) A group of UNP front-liners have planned to pressurise the newly formed UNF leadership to field UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe as the common Presidential candidate after making arrangements for General Sarath Fonseka also to contest on the ticket of another party, UNP sources revealed. The main reason for this surprise move, according to these sources is the belief that it would be easier to defeat President Mahinda Rajapaksa by splitting the Sinhala vote in more..

High-Heeled Seduction

Nov 15 (NS) I get attached to strange things, like the broken ceramic teapot I once found in the garden, or the Alice band with the chewed ends I have from Grade 1. It was later discovered that the teapot was the first my parents had bought together and Alice band was a paternal gift. At the crux of the matter is probably the fact that these items give me a sense of belonging, thereby giving me a sense of identity. more..

For want of a challenger

Nov 15 (NS) Ending weeks of frenzied speculation, the Chief of Defence Staff General Sarath Fonseka tendered his resignation to President Mahinda Rajapaksa last Thursday, thus demarcating a new battle line in the political landscape. Theoretically of course, there is little more to this event because General Fonseka remains Sri Lanka’s highest ranking armed forces officer until December 1, when he has requested that he be allowed to retire. more..

‘Mr I-Can’t’ & ‘Mr I-Want’

Nov 15 (NS) Ranil Wickremesinghe is reported to have told the ‘Sudar Oli’ newspaper that in the event Sarath Fonseka contests and wins the Presidential election, he wants to be the Prime Minister. To me this is one of the most interesting statements to come out of the whole Sarath Fonseka drama. Worthy of comment, I thought, so here goes. First of all, in entertaining the idea of Sarath Fonseka (or anyone else) as a ‘Common Candidate of the Opposition’ (CCO), Ranil Wickremesinghe is saying, more..

There has been no complaint on security: SLC

Nov 15 (PTI) Sri Lanka Cricket today dismissed reports of apprehensions concerning their team's safety during the ongoing India tour, saying they did not lodge any complaint against the security arrangements made by the Indian authorities. "There has been no complaint as such about lack of security," additional CEO of SLC Ajit Jayasekera said. "The Sri Lankan security expert Lawrence Fernando has been in India for more than two weeks to review the security. more..

GK depositors’ disappointed over CB’s inability to repay 75% in 1st phase

Nov 15 (Island) A four-member delegation representing Golden Key depositors last week briefed the Supreme Court appointed Committee of Chartered Accountants on a range of pertinent issues as the Central Bank finalized preparations to pay back investors under the first phase of the repayment plan. The delegation had an hour-long discussion with the Committee headed by Lakshman R. Watawala at the Central Bank, where the Golden Key Secretariat is based. more..

'UNF formed to bring prosperity to our nation'

Nov 15 (Island) The UNF was formed with the co-operation of several political parties with the prime objective of developing the country so that future generations can reap the benefits of prosperity, Opposition and UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe told Most Venerable Tibbatuwawe Sri Siddhartha Sumangala Thera yesterday. "Politicians may come and go and governments may change but the country must continue to develop under a long term national policy", more..

Sajith uses Janasuwaya to help IDPs

Nov 15 (Island) While the government and a section of the Opposition clashed over denial of Opposition MPs’ right to visit IDP facilities in the Northern and Eastern Province, particularly in the Vavuniya region, UNP MP Sajith Premadasa has launched a novel project to help the war displaced re-build their lives. The Hambantota District MP and the founder of Janasuwaya, an NGO active in the South criticised the government for not giving them direct access to IDP facilities. more..

Even after they are released, some women in detention centers have no homes to return to

Nov 15 (Island) Some female inmates in detention centers have no home to return to after they are released from the custody, says Ms. Jayantha Siri Dissanayake, Director of Meth Sevena Women’s Detention Home in Matugama, which functions under the Department of Social Services and Social Welfare. "This unfortunate situation has placed a heavy burden on the limited resources of detention centres", more..

Fonseka advances to political frontline

Nov 15 (ST) That it was a warning all round was in no doubt. It came at his first official conference last Tuesday, five days after orders to return to Colombo from the United States. Chief of Defence Staff General Sarath Fonseka, pointing to his uniform, told his weekly conference with armed forces commanders, senior military and intelligence officials, "when I remove this, nobody should worry. I will say what I want. However, he was quick to add, "As long as I wear this uniform, I will remain loyal to the Government." more..

Editorial: Hosting a military dictator

Nov 15 (ST) Myanmar's Head of State, Head of Government and Supreme Ruler, General Than Shwe is in Sri Lanka right now. He is here on one of his rare appearances abroad, to commemorate the 60 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries. Links between Sri Lanka, the former Ceylon and Myanmar, the former Burma, date back to almost time immemorial. Recorded history has it that Buddhism was the golden thread that linked the two with exchanges of visits by more..

Full-scale strike after thuggery at CPC

Nov 15 (ST) The go-slow campaign of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) workers has turned into a strike after supporters of a UPFA politician provoked two incidents outside the Kolonnawa fuel distribution centre on Friday and yesterday, trade union leaders said. As a crisis created a fuel shortage yesterday with several filling stations being closed, Petroleum Minister A.H.M. Fowzie met TU leaders later yesterday, but the talks failed. more..

Appointments and promotions will be granted to 9,000 in the Principals’ service

Nov 15 (GDI) This was revealed by Minister of Education Susil Premajayanth at a ceremony held at D.S. Senanayake College in Colombo. The Minister pointed out that 3,692 appointments had been made to the Principals’ Service. 3,408 promotions have also been given. The balance 4,362 appointments will be given after scrutinising the certificates within the next few weeks. more..

JVP will invite Fonseka to be presidential candidate

Nov 15 (ST) The JVP will formally invite Gen. Sarath Fonseka to contest the upcoming Presidential Election. The UNF, whose constituent parties have already reached consensus on his candidature, as exclusively revealed in the Sunday Times last week, will thereafter publicly welcome the move. They will announce that the UNF will extend their full support, according to inter-party consultations now under way. more..

Sri Lanka's African slave families fade away

Nov 15 (AFP) In a village deep in west Sri Lanka, one of the island's few remaining communities of African descent breaks into song -- a poignant elegy to a disappearing culture. The music starts with a slow, gentle rhythm played on a tambourine, spoons and coconut shells, before it builds to a climax with dancers swinging their hips, hands and feet wildly. The performance is a direct link back to the tiny minority's distant African past. more..

Government changes gear on early presidential election

Nov 15 (Island) The widely expected early presidential election may not take place ahead of scheduled parliamentary polls. The bottom line is that the government may not alter the polls time table and would face the Opposition at general elections in April next year rather than face a common candidate backed by the entire Opposition including the JVP at a presidential election. An influential section within the UPFA believed that keeping to the polls schedule and more..

Special supplement to mark four years of Rajapaksa Presidency

Nov 15 (NS) President Mahinda Rajapaksa completes four years in office on Thursday. It marks the completion of two thirds of his first term as President. The speculation at present is about impending elections and this would be an opportune moment to reflect on the past four years as well as the challenges that await the President. President Rajapaksa has his fair share of detractors but more..

Sarath Fonseka refused President's offer of reconciliation

Nov 16 (DBS) Offered: President Rajapakse offered Sarath Fonseka Prime Minister and/or Defence secretary post to reconcile but SF refused as he wanted to do politics. Changes: Opposition parties draft letter& annexure for Sarath Fonseka but ex-army chief changes contents before submitting them to President Rajapakse. Informs: Defence Ministry informs Sarath Fonseka that he has to vacate official bungalow in Colombo as he is no longer serving in the Army. more..