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Four underworld gangsters nabbed

Oct 1 (DN) Four underworld gangsters were arrested with a stock of foreign made arms in Colombo and its suburbs on Tuesday and yesterday. A special police team from Grandpass rounded up the Maligawatte area and arrested two underworld gangsters operating in the area on Tuesday around 9.15 p.m. following a tip off, Senior DIG Mediwake said. Police seized a foreign made 38 type revolver, parts of 38 type revolver, 9.5 mm pistol, one magazine and 24 ammunitions. more..

History of spice industry

Oct 1 (DN) The earliest evidence of spices by man, could be traced back to 50,000 B.C. The spice trade developed throughout the Middle East in around 2000 B.C. with Cinnamon, and Pepper, being the main spices used at that time, in the formative period of the industry. The Egyptians used herbs for embalming, and their need for exotic herbs, at that time, perhaps, stimulated the World Trade of Spices. In fact the word Spices originated from the same root as species - meaning kinds of goods. more..

Onions cultivation in Jaffna on a large scale

Oct 1 (GDI) Plans are afoot to bring thousands of acres in Jaffna under the cultivation of onions. Many farmers have taken to the cultivation of vegetables on a large scale with the ending of LTTE terrorism. They have received the opportunity of improving their production due to the fertilizer subsidy given by the Government. Many programmes have been launched to resuscitate the agricultural industry more..

India’s regional policy and Sri Lanka’s IDPs

Oct 1 (Island) Despite the Indian centre taking a keen interest in the expeditious resettlement of Sri Lanka’s IDPs, Indo-Lanka relations could be said to be working themselves out in an unruffled manner at present in marked contrast to, for instance, the mid-eighties, when ‘India-bashing’ was a popular preoccupation among some sections in Sri Lanka and Indo-Lanka ties had soured as never before. more..

'Pirith Nool journalists on the rise'

Oct 1 (LNP) The number of journalists wearing pirith nool these days was on the increase, Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said. Addressing a meeting organised by seven media organizations, to pressure the government to repeal the draconian provisions of the revived Press Councils Act, at the J.R. Jayewardene Centre, on Tuesday evening, he said that many journalists were seen wearing pirith nool . more..

14,000 household dogs in the city

Oct 1 (Island) There are over 14,000 household dogs in Colombo. Domestic dogs have to be licensed under the ‘Dog Registration Ordinance of the Local Authority and all house hold dogs should have been given the rabies vaccination which is free of cost, Chief Veterinarian, Colombo Municipal Council, Dr. S. D. Eleperuma said on Tuesday (29). A survey carried out by the Department in 2007, reported that there were over five thousand strays in the Colombo city. more..

Open your eyes and see this hapless school!

Oct 1 (Island) K/Lathpandura Sri Siddhartha Vidyalaya is a school of the Mathugama-Agalawatta Education Zone under the Western Provincial Ministry of Education, lacking even the most basic facilities. Sri Siddhartha Vidyalaya was launched in 1970 with the sole objective of helping the Sinhala and Tamil students of Lathpanduara, Thumbagalla and Dalkit State Plantation, to enable them to reap the benefits of free education. more..

IT as an A/L subject from 2011

Oct 1 (DN) The Education Ministry has introduced Information Technology (IT) to the Advanced Level curriculum as a subject this year in line with the Presidential initiative to arm the younger generation with English and Information Technology knowledge, Minister Susil Premajayanth said. Students will be able to study IT as a subject from 2011 for the first time in the education history. 40,000 students have applied to follow IT as a subject at the Advanced Level this year. more..

Mystery over pilot’s death

Oct 1 (DM) The cause of death of the Indian pilot whose body was hanging from the staircase of his house in Negombo on Tuesday is yet to be ascertained, as detectives have failed to find any traces of intruders so far. Police Spokesman Senior DIG Nimal Mediwake told the Daily Mirror that the entrance to the house was closed from inside and no signs of a break-in were found to indicate a burglary or something more serious. more..

Peace and politics in Akkaraipattu

DMO weeps in open court

Oct 1 (DM) In a somewhat of a rare incident an expert witness, a District Medical Officer giving evidence in connection with the gruesome murder of a young girl and a father wept in open court yesterday. The evidence related to the murder of the said two persons through burn injuries suffered on the eve of 1994 General Election. The accused are the driver and a supporter of former MP and present UPFA Bandaragama organizer, Tudor Dayaratne. more..

‘lack of space in stores stops compulsory purchase of paddy’

Oct 1 (DM) The government has decided to abolish the order for compulsory purchase of 200 kilos of paddy per acre from farmers, who are receiving government fertilizer subsidy, Minister Maithripala Sirisena said. In view of the fact that all stores of the Paddy Marketing Board were full and the practical problem the farmers were confronted with such as non-availability of stores, the decision to abolish the practice was made, more..

Southern Provincial Council Elections: Action against polls law violators

Oct 1 (LNP) Police have launched a massive operation throughout the Southern Province to stop election law violations by enforcing all rules and regulations under the election law with immediate effect. This has been done on a directive of the IGP on special orders from President Mahinda Rajapaksa, said senior DIG Kinsley Ekanayake at a special meeting with group leaders and their representatives and candidates, contesting the October 10 Southern Provincial Council election. more..

LTTE alleged arms dealer arrested in Singapore

Oct 1 (LP) Balraj Naidu, Singapore's former Reform Party member and committee member was arrested by Singapore authorities. He was then produced in court for an extradition hearing over an alleged arms deal with LTTE. The man was arrested at his home last week and produced in courts on September 29 for a brief courts appearance. It is reported that his lawyers and family were present in the courts. The businessman and broker, is wanted by the United States government on more..

'Sri Lanka accepts UN criticism of camps'

Oct 1 (AFP) Sri Lanka on Thursday said it accepted much of the United Nations' recent criticism over its handling of 250,000 Tamils detained in camps since the end of the island's ethnic conflict six months ago. Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe pledged the government would address recommendations made by Walter Kaelin, a representative of the United Nations secretary-general, who last week toured the detention facilities. more..

USAID trains local officials in Sri Lanka

Oct 2 (Hindu) USAID, the development arm of the U.S. government, has taken up two programmes to strengthen the ability of local officials in the Eastern Province of Sri Lanka to ensure an effective administration. An announcement by the U.S. mission here said the two programmes reached over 90 per cent of local authorities in the Eastern Province, providing them with the skills to better plan, prioritise and budget local projects. more..

"Let Our People Free!"- -Tamil and Muslim political parties

Oct 2 (TC) The Tamil speaking peoples of Sri Lanka have suffered great hardships for many decades since Independence. They have faced discrimination and had to suffer ethnic riots, pogroms and ethnic cleansing; in the pogrom in 1983 sections of the state were involved. In the last thirty four years Sri Lanka was consumed by an ethnic civil war in which the Tamil and Muslim people and others in the North and East and elsewhere were victims. more..

‘The unexpected guest’ – another ‘Royal sham’

Oct 2 (LT) A ceremony had been organized opposite Elphinston Hall in Colombo yesterday (30th) to commemorate late renowned actor Gamini Fonseka and to unveil his statue. Just before the statue was unveiled the President appeared from nowhere at the venue and unveiled the statue reported media. The media hailed this ‘unannounced and sudden’ act as a display of the highest respect the President has for the arts. more..

‘Betel leaf’ is on the road, Only ‘the bell’ taken to Court – Petition to SC from JVP

Oct 2 (LT) 15 candidates of the JVP contesting the Southern PC election have petitioned the Supreme Court requesting for a judgment to declare that their fundamental rights have been violated due to the police opposing and taking action against displaying the bell, the symbol of the JVP and the slogan “Victory to the bell” while the ‘betel leaf’, the symbol of the UPFA is allowed to be drawn and displayed on the roads. more..

Sri Lanka plantations industry demands former benefits

Oct 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka's plantations industry is demanding the release of funds taken as an export tax and is asking to treated as exporters under the value added tax regime as they were before, to help cope with a recent wage hike to workers. "We've got to see where we can get some redress in addressing cash flow issues created by the wage increase," said Dhamitha Perera, chairman of the Planters' Association of Ceylon (PA). more..

Sri Lanka aims to save last reef on south coast

Oct 2 (LBO) A coral reef described as the last remaining living, extensive reef on Sri Lanka's south coast was cleaned up in an effort where international and local agencies worked together, the ministry of fisheries said. The initiative aims to improve the quality and condition of the Kapparathota coral reef in Weligama Bay, the fisheries ministry said in a statement. Most coral reef habitats in the southern coast have been seriously degraded, more..

Debrief News - 01.10.2009

New Sri Lanka PE fund to be floated after war

Oct 2 (LBO) Leopard Capital LP, a private equity firm that now manages a fund in Cambodia, said it is launching a fund focussed on Sri Lanka after the defeat of Tamil Tiger rebels ended a 30-year war. It intends to launch a new fund, Leopard Sri Lanka Fund LP, in early 2010 to help mid-market firms expand in the domestic market as well as into other "frontier economies", the fund said in its monthly newsletter. more..

Sri Lankan citizens cannot be produced in International war crime courts - Ranil

Oct 2 (LS) Opposition party leader Ranil Wickrasinghe mentioned none of the Sri Lankan citizens could be produced before the International war accusation courts. He mentioned when he was the Prime Minister during the year 2002, he did not sign the War Crime courts agreement. In this context, none from Sri Lanka would be produced in the International war crime court, was stated by him while he participated at a meeting yesterday at Tissamarama. more..

Sri Lankan stars in doubt for Australian Twenty20

Oct 2 (CI) Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia might have to reconsider their overseas signings for the Twenty20 Big Bash due to a clash with Sri Lanka's international schedule. Muttiah Muralitharan (Victoria), Lasith Malinga (Tasmania) and Ajantha Mendis (South Australia) were set to take part in the Big Bash and thus potentially qualify to play for the states in next year's Champions League Twenty20. more..

United in support of Sri Lanka recovery

Oct 2 (GR) A fundraising event to help IDPs in Sri Lanka was a great success in Reading on Sunday. RITA, the Reading Initiative for Tsunami Action group, organised the event to help Sri Lankans who have lost their homes in the 30-year civil war which ended earlier this year. The charity, whose patrons include Councillor Bet Ticker, Reading West MP Martin Salter and Reading Post deputy editor Hilary Scott, more..

A view framed by barbed wire

Oct 2 (Economist) Kanchana asks to go by a false name, but seems self-assured for a teenager. And no wonder. Her experience of Sri Lanka’s civil war, which ended in May after a seaside slaughter of the leaders of the LTTE and at least 8,000 people taken hostage by them, would put years on anyone. For five years she was marooned in the Tigers’ northern fief. more..

Sri Lanka stocks set new record: official

Oct 2 (AFP) Sri Lankan stocks broke through the psychologically key 3,000-point level for the first time Thursday as investor sentiment continued to be bolstered by the end of the civil war, dealers said. Colombo's All Share Price Index hit 3,006 in midday trade and then retraced slightly to close up two percent or 59 points at 2,997.60 points. The volume of shares traded totalled 1.19 billion rupees (10 million dollars), more..

Navarathri finale marked with gaiety and fervour at New Kathiresan Temple, Bambalapitty

Oct 2 (HA) At the end of Navarathri festival, Maanam Poo or Vazhai Vettu (destruction of Aanavam and killing of the Mahisasuran) is celebrated today-September 28th 2009. Temples are decorated and devotees thronged the temple in the twilight. Goddess is taken on an elaborate procession to destroy “Aanavam” (ego and ignorance). Mahisasuran, a demon. He who was causing untold hardships to the Thevars. more..

European Union provides new secondary school in Ampara

Oct 2 (RW) The European Union provides a new secondary school building for 300 children and 13 teachers of Ameer Ali village, in Ampara, eastern Sri Lanka. Prior to the new school building, students and teachers conducted classes in a temporary shed. The school lacked adequate toilet facilities and was without a perimeter wall which meant that it was difficult for teachers to monitor the whereabouts of students and cattle often wandered into the school grounds. more..

CJ and minister of justice meet chairman of Netherlands council for the judiciary

Oct 2 (AT) Chief Justice Asoka de Silva and Minister of Justice and Law Reforms, Milinda Moragoda, met with Chairman of the Netherlands Council for the Judiciary, Erik van den Emster in The Hague. The role of the Netherlands Council for the Judiciary is to support the courts in the executing of their tasks, including the allocation of budgets, supervision of financial management, personnel policy, ICT and Housing. more..

A glimpse of trade between Sri Lanka and China

Oct 2 (LG) China celebrates its 60th National Day on 1st October 2009 and a variety of festivities will be held in Mainland China , Macau and Hong Kong on grand scale. Sri Lanka has maintained a cordial relationship in culture and trade with China and the Government will extend its heartiest greetings in true friendship to China in her achievement of gargantuan success and prosperity. The relationship between Sri Lanka and China has continued from a long time beyond Christian era. more..

A very big thank you Mrs Hillary Clinton

Oct 2 (LG) It is with the deep feeling the right thinking Sri Lankans are saying a big ‘thank you’ for your pivotal role to chair the meeting of the United Nations Security Council to adopt the resolution to create new tools to combat sexual violence against women. In your speech, you have candidly charged number of countries including Sri Lanka of using rape as a tool of war. Inclusion of Sri Lanka in the list is welcome decision, more..

Dilshan wins Twenty20 award

Oct 2 (CI) Tillakaratne Dilshan has won the ICC Twenty20 International Performance of the Year award in recognition of his breezy 96 off 57 balls against West Indies in the semi-final of the 2009 World Twenty20 in England. Dilshan's performance at The Oval included two sixes and 12 fours and helped steer his side into the finals of the tournament. This is the second year the award has been given to more..

Sri Lanka records the highest male death rate from liver diseases

Oct 2 (AT) Sri Lanka records the highest male death rate from liver diseases for all ages and 35-64 yrs in selected countries in Asia. It also records the highest male - female mortality ratio in the world; female mortality is higher than some Western countries, revealed Dr. Prasantha de Silva, Consultant Community Physician, Mental Health Directorate, Ministry of Healthcare and Nutrition. more..

India to send MPs team to Lanka

Oct 2 (AT) India will soon send a delegation of MPs with the consent of the Sri Lankan Government to study the situation in make-shift camps in Vavunia where 2.8 lakh Tamils displaced by the war are put up. This assurance was given to senior DMK leader and former Union Minister T T Baalu by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday. Mr Baalu called on the Prime Minister and Congress president Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi and handed over identical letters from DMK president and more..

Sri Lankan nine forced to go home

Oct 2 (BT) NINE failed asylum seekers are about to be sent home to Sri Lanka - the Rudd Government's first forcible removals of people who have come to Australia by boat. The removals come as a boat with 69 people on board - the fourth in less than a week - was intercepted early yesterday and the issue of the rising number of unauthorised arrivals heats up politically. Nationals Senate leader Barnaby Joyce said this week the line between economic migrants and more..

Mango tree musings

Oct 2 (TT) Elmo Jayawardena’s Sam’s Story is a tale told by an idiot. It is also an object lesson in the art, and artifices, of telling the truth. Sam is something of a village idiot. He lives with his mother and siblings in a village in Sri Lanka. They are poor. He leaves the village and goes to the city for work. He works for two families. First for the white Madam Martell, then for a Sri Lankan pilot, who dies in a blast towards the end of the novel. more..

Does India care about its own citizens in the south?

Oct 2 (IL) As days go by, hundreds of fishermen who reclaim their homes in the southern part of the Indian State of Tamil Nadu are harassed and tortured. So far, over 500 fishermen have been killed by none other than the Sri Lankan military. India, as a sovereign nation with over 1 billion people of whom nearly 75 million are Tamils, are being taken for a ride by the Sri Lankan Navy after India handed over the island of Kachchatheevu to Sri Lanka. more..

Sri Lanka port in talks on new services

Oct 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) is in talks with international shipping lines on new services through Colombo port despite the global downturn in trade which has reduced cargo volumes, a senior official said. SLPA chairman Priyath Wickrama said there were signs cargo volumes were picking up as the global economy recovers from recession. A new computer terminal management system that replaced an aging system has helped increase vessel productivity and more..

Kani Lanka Resort & Spa

Railway to Jaffna and antics of a Sri Lankan Minister

Oct 2 (LP) "Tune in to any local TV channel this evening at 8.05 PM and watch as Sri Lanka makes history. A message from the Government of Sri Lanka." This was a message distributed by mobile phone companies via SMS alerts on 30 September and people were enthusiastic to see how Sri Lanka makes history on that time. However, almost all the TV channels telecast an advertisement stating that a fund had been launched to raise funds from people to more..

Rudrakumar – Refused Entry to Germany

Oct 2 (SLW) The German authorities have prevented the new leader of the LTTE, entering the country in the guise of a human rights activist, according to reliable information received. Rudrakumaran who is a US citizen and an Indian Film director were going to be the key speakers at a mass demonstration, some TNA parliamentarians still living abroad were also to join them. more..

“Don’t use the displaced persons in Sri Lanka as a political tool”

Oct 2 (SLW) Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU, Ravinatha Aryasinha told the Human Rights Sub Committee of the European Parliament chaired by MEP Heidi Hautala of the Finnish Green Party yesterday, that Sri Lanka will not respond to the GSP+ investigation EU expert’s report but will instead continue to engage on the issues of concern with the European Commission. more..

Defferently abled child files a HR petition over A/L exam

Oct 2 (SLW) The visually disadvantaged student Ranga Sampath Gunapala of Ousadhapitiya, Vavuniya has filed a petition in the Human Rights Commission in Vavuniya seeking a solution for not allowing him to appear for the last GCE A/L Examination as a handicapped student. Petitioner Gunapala, 19 years old is a student Perakum Maha Vidyalaya, Irattakulama. He has stated that he appeared for the GCE (A/L) Examination in 2008 and more..


Oct 2 (DM) Many people thought President Mahinda Rajapaksa was going to announce a premature decision by EU to extend GSP Plus concession to Sri Lanka. Some others jumped to the conclusion that the country was going to send its first man to space or even the moon. Cricket fans thought New Zealand had for some reason withdrawn from the Champions t ournament paving way for Sri Lanka to enter the semi-finals. more..

75 days left - its time for Sri Lanka to act now

Oct 2 (SLW) The preeminent geopolitical issue of our time challenging the 6.5 billion people living on earth is neither terrorism nor the food crisis but the climate catastrophe. Three weeks ago the UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-moon visited the Arctic. In his article published on September 17, 2009 in the New York Times he says "I saw the remains of a glacier that just a few years ago, was a majestic mass of ice. It had collapsed. more..

Children on the street

Oct 2 (LG) Child is considered as the most innocent and peerless creature of the world even she/he is from home environment or outwards. As we know, street children are known as children who spend their time on streets in terms of selling and helping adults to do business in an irregular manner. Most of them are helpless, poor and misplaced due to lack of attention paid by the guardian and parents. But most of them have a house. more..

Opposition demands dismantling of war time security measures

Oct 2 (LG) Nearly five months have passed since the government claimed complete victory over terrorism by the defeat of the LTTE. And at the same time, it was claimed that peace had arrived. However, throughout the country the presence of the security forces and the operation of the security system go on in the same manner as before. This week the opposition demanded that the government security is brought to the level of peace time security and more..

'Sixty percent of children suffer from depression'

Oct 2 (LG) Over 60 per cent of children suffer from depression, says the National Mental Health Foundation. “The lack of communication between children and parents, children and teachers are the primary causes for this condition,” said Professor Gnanadasa Perera, Chairman of the foundation. It would be difficult to develop the talents and skills of a child under such circumstances, he said. more..