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Malinga joins Highveld Lions

Oct 16 (CI) Lasith Malinga, the Sri Lankan fast bowler, has joined South African domestic side Highveld Lions as their overseas player for the Pro20 competition. Malinga, 26, will leave for South Africa in time to participate in the Lions' first match against the Cape Cobras on February 5 in Cape Town. "We are delighted to confirm that franchise coach Dave Nosworthy has successfully reached an agreement with Lasith Malinga more..

Not sorry: PM unmoved by pleas

Oct 16 (Age) Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has brushed off emotional appeals from Tamils aboard the boat he had the Indonesians intercept, and whose fate is at the centre of a political row over asylum seekers. The 253 asylum seekers, who have refused to leave the boat for five days, last night started a hunger strike and erected a banner in a bid for "international community support". This followed a plea from nine-year-old girl, Brindha, who wept before the Australian media. more..

Sri Lanka outlook on 'B' sovereign rating lifted to 'positive': S&P

Oct 16 (LBO) Standard & Poor's has lifted the outlook on Sri Lanka's 'B' sovereign rating to 'positive' from 'stable' expecting that a program with the International Monetary Fund would be completed, the rating agency said. The outlook change also took into account the strengthening of the Sri Lanka's balance of payments position. If the IMF program was successfully concluded as expected by S&P, more..

Fake facebook profile menace in Sri Lanka

Oct 16 (SLW) According to intelligence reports, a massive fake facebook scam is underway by certain individuals to collect personal photos and information of people for commercial and other purposes. This is the latest Internet scam that is common in Colombo and Kandy areas. Most of these fake facebook profiles are portraying themselves as attractive women to lure young men and women. In most cases, naïve facebook users add them thus endangering all their private information. more..

Summary of Cabinet decisions

Oct 16 (GDI) Cabinet granted approval to a Memorandum submitted by the Minister of Disaster Management and Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe to construct drainage system in Zone 1, 3 and 4 in Manik Farm, Vavuniya. United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) agreed to provide necessary funding through United Nations Development Programme. The granted among agreed was USD 467,025 equivalent to SLR 52.9 million. more..

Cancellation of a SLAS exam paper

Oct 16 (GDI) The “Case Study” paper of the Limited Comparative Examination for Recruitment to Class III of the Sri Lanka Administrative Service -2007 (2009) held on 30th and 31st of May 2009 has been cancelled due to an unavoidable circumstance, Commissioner General of Examinations, Anura Edirisinghe said in a statement. “A fresh examination only on this paper will be conducted on Saturday, 14th November 2009, more..

'Massive foreign investment flow'

Oct 16 (GDI) Sri Lanka is recording a tremendous improvement in foreign investments, Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said. He said that it could be attributed to the conducive environment that has emerged for entrepreneurs with the dawning of peace in the island. He noted that the recent visits of investors from all over the world seeking investment opportunities in Sri Lanka including the visit of US business delegation was a clear indication of the confidence of more..

World Bank-IFC ranks BOI best in South Asia

Oct 16 (GDI) In a major boost to Sri Lanka’s profile globally, the World Bank’s Investment Climate Advisory Service has ranked Board of Investment of Sri Lanka as the best in South Asia for investor promotion and facilitation, BOI Chairman Dhammika Perera told the weekly cabinet briefing held at Department of Government Information more..

Overland postal services to Jaffna begin

Oct 16 (BBC) Five months after the end of Sri Lanka’s war, overland postal services have restarted from the capital Colombo to Jaffna – the main city of the northern region where the decades-long conflict was fought. Forty-two bags of mail are travelling south today, overland from Jaffna, and fifty-six are being conveyed northwards to the northern city. The old-fashioned movement of letters and parcels constitutes one more small step towards a kind of normality in northern Sri Lanka. more..

Sri Lanka to push adventure sports tourism

Oct 16 (LBO) Sri Lanka is on the mark to push adventure sports tourism, riding the country's geographical diversity following the conclusion of 'Raid Amazones 2009', an adventure sports event for women. Raid Amazones, one of the world’s biggest multi sport adventure events for women was worked out in Dambulla in central Sri Lanka over the weekend, with foreign and local participants taking part in mountain biking, trekking and aqua sports. more..

Sri Lanka unable to stop migrant outflow: minister

Oct 16 (AFP) Sri Lanka said Thursday it was unable to prevent migrants leaving the country, as Indonesia intercepted a boatload of asylum seekers from the island heading for Australia. Media minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa said the government could not "stop people from getting into a boat and seeking greener pastures in another country". But he told reporters officials were trying to discourage such trips. more..

2,400 displaced Lankan Tamils sent to India: TR Baalu

Oct 16 (PTI) The first batch of 2,400 Tamils lodged in camps for internally displaced persons in Sri Lanka were sent back home today as assured by the government there, DMK MP TR Baalu, who led a team of Tamil Nadu MPs to the island nation, said. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse had assured the 10-member MPs delegation that 58,000 of the 2.53 lakh internally displaced Tamils would be sent home in the next fortnight starting today, Baalu said in a release here. more..

'Ministers don’t see difference between life saving drugs & tins of salmon'

Oct 16 (LT) When questioned about expiry dates of drugs the idiotic ministers said consuming tins of salmon two or three weeks after their expiry date would not harm anybody and similarly using drugs that had exceeded their expiry date would not harm anybody. When the minister comes out with such rubbish what could anyone expect from the Ministry of Health? more..

Sri Lanka leader takes aim at international lenders

Oct 16 (AFP) Sri Lanka's president on Thursday accused international financial institutions of placing too heavy a burden on developing nations by demanding they slash subsidies in exchange for help. President Mahinda Rajapakse told a meeting of the 31-member Asian Cooperation Dialogue in Colombo that elimination of poverty in developing nations "should not be held ransom to such conditions". more..

Lasantha’s murder: Case taken up for 22nd time

Oct 16 (LG) The case pertaining to the murder of veteran journalist Lasantha Wickrematunga was taken up at the Mount Lavinia magistrate's court today for the 22nd time. Mirihana police informed court that investigations were underway following the statement that had been obtained yet again from the suspect who had been detained in connection with the theft of the journalist's mobile phone. more..

Win The Peace

Oct 16 (TOI) The significance of the five-day visit to Sri Lanka by a 10-member delegation of parliamentarians from Tamil Nadu goes beyond the nine-page summation the MPs have come out with, on the plight of nearly 2.53 lakh war-displaced Tamils living in pitiable conditions in congested camps ringed by barbed wire. For, the mission marks the first direct attempt by Tamil Nadu to engage the Sri Lankan government at the political level on its decades-old ethnic problem. more..

Sri Lanka Jaffna post restarted

Oct 16 (BBC) Overland postal services have restarted from Colombo to the city of Jaffna, the main town in Sri Lanka's north, five months after the end of the war. Forty-two bags of mail on Thursday travelled south overland from Jaffna, while 56 bags were conveyed northwards. The old-fashioned movement of letters and parcels constitutes one more small step towards restoring a kind of normality in northern Sri Lanka. more..

Bashing the West, a new type patriotism: Karu Jayasuriya

Oct 16 (AT) Bashing the West has become the new trend in demonstrating patriotism, says UNP Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya. Issuing a press release, Mr. Jayasuriya has pointed out that Sri Lanka was quick to respond to countries who requested that the internally displaced be released from their camps. He has said that although the LTTE terrorism had been defeated, a different kind of terror was being imposed on our people and more..

World Hand Washing Day

Oct 16 (AT) Dharmapala Primary School at Ehaliyagoda on 15th October with the support of the Health Education Bureau and the Ministry of Education to create awareness among the children on the importance of hand washing to prevent transmission of diseases. This event was held to celebrate the World Hand Washing Day which fell on 15th October. Dr. Sarath Amunugama, the Director of the Health Education Bureau said that the UN declared 15th of October as World Hand Washing Day last year. more..

'We’re ready to give further aid to Sri Lanka'

Oct 16 (Hindu) India on Thursday expressed its readiness to provide further humanitarian assistance, on the request of Colombo, for the welfare of nearly 2.5 lakh war-displaced people housed in the refugee camps of Sri Lanka’s Northern Province. The assurance was conveyed by visiting Minister of State for External Affairs Preneet Kaur to the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama in a meeting on the more..

U.S. Business, Govt. Representatives tour port city with Sri Lankan officials

Oct 16 (IL) A group of American and Indian business leaders joined a delegation of U.S. and Sri Lankan trade officials on 14 October visit to Trincomalee, a city in the Eastern province of Sri Lanka, which was just months ago enveloped in a terrorist conflict. The trade mission to coastal Trincomalee was part of the Sri Lankan government’s efforts to rebuild its Eastern and Northern Provinces, more..

Southern district awards for entrepreneurs

Oct 16 (LBO) A business chamber in southern Sri Lanka, one of the most impoverished regions of the island, said it is organising entrepreneurship awards to encourage local businesses. The Hambantota District Chamber of Commerce (HDCC) said its Best Entrepreneur of the Year Awards ceremony for the district will be held on October 17, 2009. "HDCC has designed the event to encourage the local business community to practice sound and more..

Sri Lanka to present 4-month budget in November

Oct 16 (LBO) A four-month mini budget is expected to be presented to parliament in November seeking approval for Sri Lanka's government to spend 362 billion rupees collected from the people through taxes or borrowed. The mini-budget, or vote on account had provisions to spend 197.47 billion rupees as current expenditure and a very optimistic 158.98 billion rupees as capital expenditure and a further 6.22 billion rupees as 'advance account' activities. more..

Sri Lanka's interned Tamils: Winners and losers

Oct 16 (Economist) THE victory in May of Sri Lanka’s army over the rebel LTTE should have been a cause for almost universal celebration. The Tigers, seeking to monopolise the politics of the country’s Tamil minority, were pioneers in suicide-bombing and leaders in child-conscription. They were as brutal towards Tamils as towards the Sinhalese majority. Many foreign countries banned them as terrorists. more..

Lanka seeks more India support in demining ops

Oct 16 (PTI) Sri Lanka on Thursday sought more assistance from India to carry out demining operations in the in the country’s former war zone as it thanked New Delhi for its timely humanitarian assistance for the conflict displaced Tamil civilians. Foreign minister Rohitha Bogollagama conveyed his government’s appreciation to visiting minister of state for external affairs Preneet Kaur for Indian assistance when she called on him here. more..

Government delays annual budget

Oct 16 (wsws) In a cynical manoeuvre designed to hoodwink voters prior to elections next year, the Sri Lankan government has announced that it will not bring down its annual budget for 2010 next month as is usually the case, but will instead present a “vote on account”. The “vote on account” is essentially a mini-budget to cover government spending for the first four months of 2010. The 2010 budget “appropriation bill” was expected to be presented to parliament by October 8. more..

Education system to be streamlined

Oct 16 (GDI) Education Minister Susil Premajayantha said the educational process will be further strengthened by granting all promotions and appointments in the educational sector early next month. The Minister made these remarks addressing the annual prize giving of the Sirimavo Bandaranaike Vidyalaya in Colombo recently. 225 appointments in the educational administrative service will be known today. more..

'Tax payers can contribute to nation building'

Oct 16 (GDI) The Commissioner of Inland Revenue, Mahinda Medagoda has requested tax payers to extend maximum contributions for the nation building effort. ' They should not entertain unnecessary fears regarding payment of income taxes' Medagoda noted. The commissioner also pointed out that no inquiries regarding past activities will be made if people voluntarily come forward to pay their taxes. Taxes will be decided upon the ability to pay. more..

New plan to construct Torrington Synthetic Track

Oct 16 (GDI) The Ministry of Sport and Public Recreations has taken steps to get the service of the State Engineering Corporation in respect of planning consultancy, project management and construction service involved in the construction of Torrington Synthetic Track, Ministry sources revealed. The Development of the Playground subject to the payment of Rs.278, 913,624.00 with VAT instead of Rs.220 million as agreed earlier. more..

"Surekum Piyasa" for employees

Oct 16 (GDI) The Ministry of Labour Relations and Manpower has taken steps to construct a 29 storied building named "Surekum Piyasa" in the land owned by the Department of Labour which is adjoining the present Labour Secretariat. It is to utilize Rs.3.410 billion out of the Employees Trust Fund monies and the balance Rs.4.174 billion to be borne by the Employees' provident Found totaling Rs.7.585 billion, to appoint a Technical Evaluation Committee for the above purpose, and more..

Basil on economic growth despite global economic recession

Oct 16 (GDI) MP Basil Rajapakse has said that Sri Lanka’s industrial sector was growing strong when there was a downturn in the global economy. He said factories were being opened at places such as Matale at a time when thousands of people were losing jobs in affluent countries. This particular investor came as they were assured that peace was being ushered in by the President with more..

World Food Day today

Oct 16 (GDI) Today is World Food Day under the theme of food protection and food preservation. The Saviya Development Foundation has organised several programs at village level to celebrate the occasion. The World Food Day program will be held at Anuradhapura today at the Institute of Post Harvest Technology. Minister of Agriculture Development and Agrarian Services Maithripala Sirisena will be the chief guest. more..

Another 2500 IDPs resettled

Oct 16 (GDI) 2500 persons housed in Welfare Villages in Vavuniya have left for resettlement in their native lands in Jaffna. The “Uthuru Wasanthaya” Task Force has expedited the resettlement process. The programme is being mooted through the Government Agents of Jaffna and Vavuniya. G.A. Jaffna K. Ganesh said the civilians will be transported daily from the Welfare Villages to Jaffna for resettlement from yesterday. more..

Ranil: Time is up to set up a precedence in the leadership selection process

Oct 16 (LG) Since independence, Sri Lanka has suffered heavily without visionary leaders in the mainstream political parties. This has caused tremendous damage to the growth and image of the nation, whilst other nations in the region have earned tremendous growth. The, need of the hour is have bold policy inventions by all political parties paving way to install honest, patriotic and magnanimous leaders in the leadership of political parties. more..

Rain, once a blessing, now a curse

Oct 16 (UPI) For ages the people of Sri Lanka have looked forward to the rainy season as it brings so many blessings. It brings much needed water to the paddy fields and thus assures food for the year to come. It also brings the water to fill the reservoirs. Many of the blessings for the year to come depend on the rains that comes from the heavens. However, there are nearly 300,000 people in the camps for the internally displaced for whom more..

Trade and investment framework agreement council meeting

Oct 16 (MoD) The seventh U.S.-Sri Lanka Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) Council meeting was held in Colombo, on October 15. The U.S. delegation was led by Assistant United States Trade Representative for South and Central Asia Michael Delaney. Minister G. L. Peiris led the Sri Lankan delegation. "Our purpose here today is to foster economic development and generate jobs, particularly in the war-affected areas of Sri Lanka," Michael Delaney said. more..

Minister Faiszer Musthapha invites Kuwaitis to explore Sri Lanka

Oct 16 (IL) Sri Lanka's Tourism Promotions Minister Faiszer Musthapha, who was in Kuwait from 12th - 14th October on an official visit, appealed to Kuwaitis to visit Sri Lanka and enjoy its beauty and hospitality. This he said at a Sri Lanka promotional event held on 13th October 2009 organized by the Sri Lankan Embassy for the members of travel trade, media and well-wishers. more..

Drainage systems within the Manik Farm zones in Vavuniya improved

Oct 16 (MoD) The Cabinet has approved a Memorandum submitted by the Minister of Disaster Management and Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe to construct drainage system in Zone 1, 3 and 4 in Manik Farm, Vavuniya. United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has agreed to assist with required funding for the project under United Nations Development Programme. more..

Govt to set up two new FTZs in N-E

Oct 16 (MoD) The Government will establish two new Free Trade Zones in the North and East - one will be in the Kilinochchi District and the other in the Trincomalee District, Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa stated yesterday. Tax holidays for 15 years and other incentives would be offered to the investors who start industries in the North and East while the local residents would gain employment opportunities from these FTZs. more..

Sri Lanka losing 70% of job, investment opportunities: WB

Oct 16 (LG) A new report by the World Bank points out that over 70 per cent of government investment promotion agencies miss out on investment and job creating opportunities by failing to provide accurate and timely information to potential investors. The report states that Sri Lanka is the most improved investment promotion agency in South Asia. There are 52 countries including Sri Lanka that have been ranked in the 'Good Governance' category while more..

Furniture and equipment to Jaffna prison

Oct 16 (LP) Furniture and equipment worth over Rs.02 million will be granted to the Point Pedro courts complex and the Jaffna prison today, by the Equal Access to Justice Project of the UNDP. The consignment of goods including computers, fax machines, and office cupboards for the Point Pedro courts and two televisions for the Jaffna prison will be handed over by Minister Milinda Moragoda at two ceremonies to be held in the courts and the prison premises respectively. more..

Basil Rajapkasa to quit parliament on 20th of October

Oct 16 (LP) UPFA National List MP Basil Rajapaksa stated that he has decided to resign from Parliament on 20th of October in order to support forthcoming presidential and parliamentary elections. Rajapaksa added that he is not in a position to confirm now whether President Mahinda Rajapaksa would call an early presidential election. more..

MPs’ visit meant to help Rajapaksa: Ramadoss

Oct 16 (Hindu) The team of MPs from the DMK and the Congress visited Sri Lanka to help Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa in the coming elections, Pattali Makkal Katchi founder S. Ramadoss has alleged. He claimed that when the Lok Sabha elections were being held in India, Mr. Rajapaksa had helped the ruling combine by announcing a ceasefire in the war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. That was nothing but dramatics. more..

'Govt quick to forget heroism of Lanka Armed Forces'

Oct 16 (LNW) Mangala Samaraweera accused the Sri Lankan Government of forgetting the heroic armed forces a mere five months after the conclusion of the war. These allegations were made at ‘Guruda Media Meeting’ organized by the SLFP-M was held at the party headquarters. Speaking to the media he said, that the government is not only forgetting the armed forces but is now conspiring against them. more..

'Govt. declares war against Gen. Fonseka'

Oct 16 (LT) A large scale malicious attack on Chief of Defense Staff Gen. Sarath Fonseka has been planned states ‘Lanka Irida,’ the Sinhalese weekend newspaper. The attack has been planned on suspicion that Gen. Fonseka would contest the impending presidential election as the common candidate. Several Army officers who had been engaged in various irregularities and had been punished during Gen. Fonseka’s tenure in the Army and more..

‘Uthuru Mithuru’ funds evaporate!

Oct 16 (LT) It is revealed that despite collecting money throughout the island for the ‘Uthuru Mithuru’ train line so far no bank account has been for the project. This has been revealed when National Rupavahini contributed Rs.5 million for the project. Officials of ‘Rupavahini’ were in a quandary when they found that there was no bank account to deposit the money they had collected for the ‘Uturu Mithuru’ (Friends of the North) project. more..

Sri Lankan asylum seekers

Public money spent for ‘Electronic ID card project’ down the drain

Oct 16 (LT) The project that was begun in 2006 spending a large amount of money to make available a new ‘electronic national identity card’ to the citizens of Sri Lanka has been abandoned. The reason for abandoning the project which had already cost a large amount of public money is the in ability of the authorities to resolve the issue of two Pakistani and an Indian companies vying for the tender of the project. more..

President to visit Nepal on Oct 29

Oct 16 (NN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa is arriving in Kathmandu on a two-day visit to Nepal on October 29, foreign ministry officials said. President Rajapaksa will meet his Nepali counterpart Ram Baran Yadav, Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and deputy PM and foreign minister Sujata Koirala during his visit. He will also visit Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha, and inaugurate a Vihar constructed by Sri Lanka there. more..

Court grants interim anticipatory bail for Krishnasamy

Oct 16 (Hindu) The Madras High Court on Thursday granted inter-State interim anticipatory bail to Puthiya Thamizhagam leader K. Krishnasamy and 11 others in a case relating to the damage caused to the Sri Lankan High Commission in New Delhi on October 2. Justice R. Regupathi said that Dr. Krishnasamy and others should furnish bonds for Rs.10,000 and one surety for a like sum. more..