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A disaster in our history...will the 'real' authors of the CFA please stand up?

Aug 28 (DM) Once upon a time, it was taken as a fact that the CFA, or the Cease Fire Agreement was hidden from the then President, Madam Chandrika Kumaratunga. Or rather, that she got to know about it, only when it was signed and delivered, so to speak! That may have been, since it was a house divided, with a UPFA President and a UNF Government, with no love lost between them, at that time! more..

Sand mining fiasco: Police re-arrest 2 of 20 suspects

Aug 28 (NF) Two suspects, belonging to a group that was arrested while engaging in illegal sand mining on the banks of the Mahaweli River in the Dehiattakandiya and Wilgamuwa areas, but escaped following the intervention of a regional politician, have been re-arrested by police. The DIG in charge of the Central Province Pujith Jayasundera said that police operations were continuing to arrest another 18 suspects. more..

Sri Lanka gets $154mn ADB loan to rebuild northern roads

Aug 28 (LBO) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will give Sri Lanka a loan of 154.4 million US dollars to modernise roads in the north which was ravaged by decades of war, a statement said. The total investment cost of the Northern Road Connectivity Project is 173 million US dollars with the Sri Lankan government contributing an equivalent of 18.6 million dollars. "The main objective of the project is to improve road connectivity within the Northern Province and more..

Lawyer seeks quick processing for pregnant Tamil

Aug 28 (G&M) A lawyer for a pregnant Tamil migrant is pressing Canada Border Services Agency to expedite identifying her client or, she says, the woman could risk delivering her child in a British Columbia prison. “There may be a possibility that she could give birth while in custody if we don’t pay much attention,” said Malini Dyonisius, the woman’s lawyer. The clock is ticking for the Tamil woman who arrived on board the MV Sun Sea on Aug. 13 with 491 men, women and children. more..

Saudi Arabia employers 'hammer nails' into Sri Lankan maid

On the ‘Dana’ clause of the Dasa Raja Dharma

Aug 28 (DM) Earlier this year, I made an observation in an article to an English daily. I maintained that the ‘Dasa Raja Dharma’ is a handbook on good governance that the elected as well as the electors can use, that it is moreover an insurance policy as well as a litmus test. This is what I wrote: ‘The definitive text book on Good Governance was written, so to speak, over 2500 years ago by Siddhartha Gauthama: The Dasa Raja Dharma, the ten-point framework for rulers. more..

The final cross

Aug 28 (SL) Today the SLMC will probably cross to the government side, giving Mahinda more than a two thirds majority. This is the final crumbling of Ranil’s coalition which began in 2001, hastened in 2004 when he didn’t fight President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga and now almost completed since he has not fought President Mahinda Rajapaksa. With the last two Presidents he’s tried to negotiate and they’ve simply picked his pockets of his MPs. more..

'Rehabilitation of displaced Tamils a major concern'

Aug 28 (Hindu) Recognising the need for a political settlement of the Tamil question in Sri Lanka, Communist Party of India (Marxist) Central Committee member T.K. Rangarajan, MP, on Friday said the immediate priority should be to address the concerns of relief, resettlement and rehabilitation of the Tamil civilian population. He said the expeditious settlement of the Tamil question should involve the devolution of powers and more..

Ex- combatants retrained as bridal designers

Aug 28 (MoD) Bureau of the Commissioner General of Rehabilitation together with Alliance Development Trust, conducted a short term course on beauty culture and bridal dressing for the trainees at Pempemadu and Puntottam women rehabilitation centers, recently. An official from Bureau of the Commissioner General of Rehabilitation revealed. Mrs. Dananjanee Palliaguruge steered the training programme, and 36 women ex-combatants received certificates on completion of the training. more..

Appointing Shavendra De Silva to the UN is to create a new round of conflicts

Aug 28 (LeN) Govt.‘s attempt to appoint Major Gen. Shavendra De Silva as the SL resident representative to the United Nations Organization, Geneva, is to create a new round of conflicts, according to Govt. intelligence divisions. Foreign affairs Ministry sources say even if there had been such a proposal, officially there had been no such intimation to the UN Secretariat, Geneva. When International human rights Organization is accusing the present Govt. of human rights violations; when more..

Mine clearing operations a success in North & East

Aug 28 (MoD) In a recent report released the Sri Lanka National Mine Action Center (SLNMAC) concluded that as at June, 2010 a total area of 1,541,880,972sqm in North and East as cleared-off, while an area of 2,468,119,028sqm remaining to be swept by the Army engineering corps. According to the report released, the estimated time required to clear-off the remaining area will be at-least 15 years. more..

Gujarat opens door for Lankan companies

Aug 28 (LNP) Sri Lanka and India have recorded positive economic growth when Western economies have recorded negative growth, Acting Indian High Commissioner Vikram Misri said. With the restoration of peace Sri Lanka is heading to a new era. The country is now addressing on equity, development, enterprises, and India being a close friend of Sri Lanka is ready to assist the emerging economy of the country, Misri said speaking at the presentation and more..

Editorial: Gobbling garbage our way

Aug 28 (LNP) The government has pledged to make Sri Lanka Asia`s Wonder or Miracle. It seems to be toiling in vain. For, we have a feeling that we are already there! It really is a miracle that we are still alive in spite of consuming all the garbage masquerading as comestibles at eateries and hotels. Thanks to them, we seem to have developed a remarkable resistance to germs of all sorts, which would definitely have wiped out any other nation. more..

President tells public servants: Take firm, right decisions

Aug 28 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said that officials who show extreme dedication and commitment in their service to the public would always be protected by the State. The President added that public servants should not show reluctance in taking firm and right decisions when matters relating to the service to the public are concerned. more..

Investments to rise by nine percent

Aug 28 (DN) Investment level of Sri Lanka is expected to rise to 33-35 percent of the GDP from the current 24-26 percent largely with the increase in domestic and foreign direct investments, Finance and Planning Ministry Secretary and Treasury Secretary Dr P B Jayasundera said. He made this observation yesterday at the Diamond Jubilee Ceremony of the Central Bank at the Centre for Banking Studies. more..

Traditional small industries: Govt ensures better future

Aug 28 (DN) A State officer with an experts knowledge and training in the industrial sector will be attached to each and every divisional secretariat to help divert the traditional industrial and small enterprises sector towards speedy development. This will ensure a better future for the traditional industrialists and enable them make a better contribution towards the economy, Deputy Minister Weerakumara Dissanayake said. more..

Fate of Sigiriya beauties worries Sanga

Aug 28 (Island) Sri Lanka cricket captain Kumar Sangakkara said, on the eve of the Micromax tri-nation final against India on Friday, that the discolouring of Sigiriya frescoes had saddened him and that every Sri Lankan should value the world heritage site. Reports a fortnight ago that following the application of certain chemical some of the frescoes had begun to fade disturbed the public. more..

SLFP-President clash to follow constitutional amendment

Aug 28 (LT) It is reported that the conflict between SLFP and President has aggravated following the proposed constitutional amendment which is expected to be brought to extend the tenure of President. As a manifestation of this conflict General Secretary of Sri Lanka Nidahas Sewaka Sangamaya Mr. Lesley Devendra has vehemently criticized President and the action of Rajapaksha clan. more..

Crocodile attacks defeated JVP candidate

Aug 28 (Island) A JVPer had one of his legs badly bitten by a crocodile on Thursday whilehe was fishing near the bank of the Galpothe Wewa in Anuradhapura. The victim, M. Seneviratna (50), a defeated JVP candidate at the last Provincial Council elections, had cast his net and was waiting for a catch when he crocodile attacked him. His cries for help drew the attention of passers by who rushed to his assistance and pulled him away from the grip of the reptile. more..

Blind man 'got LTTE training'

Aug 28 (BBC) The Supreme Court in Sri Lanka has warned government prosecutors not to merely repeat utterances by the police without properly investigating. The court made the warning as a fundamental rights (FR) petition by a blind LTTE suspect was taken for hearing. Police have accused the detainee, Sriselvan Jude, of taking weapons training from the LTTE, the state counsel informed the court. Chief Justice Asoka de Silva then questioned as to how a blind person get weapons training. more..

Tamil migrant review hears of torture

Aug 28 (CBC) A lawyer representing some of the female Tamil migrants who recently arrived in B.C. has urged that the processing of two women be prioritized, saying that one is suffering from a shrapnel wound and the other was tortured. Malini Dyonisius, the duty counsel representing four of the women at Friday's Immigration and Refugee Board hearing in Vancouver, said one of the young women was suffering from wounds she received in Sri Lanka. more..

Ban animal slaughter in temples – UNP

Aug 28 (Island) The slaughter of animals for human consumption in temple premises, especially in a country which professes Buddhism and Hinduism should be banned, the UNP said yesterday. National List UNP MP D. M. Swaminathan, addressing a news conference in Colombo, alleged that around 400 goats had been inhumanely sacrificed at a kovil in Chilaw recently, with scant respect for the teachings of Hinduism which prohibited the consumption of meat. more..

GL, Envoy to talk on tortured housemaid

Aug 28 (DM) External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris is expected to meet the Saudi Arabian Ambassador in Colombo to discuss the incident of a Sri Lankan housemaid having nails inserted into her body by her Saudi Arabian employer. Meanwhile the External Affairs Ministry is to submit a medical report to the Saudi government over the incident where 24 nails were inserted into the housemaid who was operated upon yesterday, Ministry sources said. more..

Editorial: An end to jaywalking

Aug 28 (DM) There’s no denying of the fact that the UPFA government has made a marked improvement in the road network in Sri Lanka. The improved conditions of the roads coupled with the slide in vehicle prices will definitely see more vehicles plying on the roads in the days to come. To ensure a smooth drive strict adherence to traffic rules by both the motorists as well as the pedestrians is necessary. more..

5- member committee coming to replace CC

Aug 28 (DM) The government will introduce a five member committee comprising the Speaker, the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader as an alterative to the Constitutional Council under the proposed constitutional reforms to be introduced early next month. The other two members will be nominated by the Opposition and the President. The government is now in a position to amend the Constitution to this effect, with the SLMC yesterday deciding to offer its support to the government to more..

Political solution: UNP seeks India’s help

Aug 28 (DM) The main opposition UNP said yesterday India should help Sri Lanka to implement a political package for the Tamils in the North and East. UNP MP D.M. Swaminathan told a news conference that India’s intervention was essential because the Sri Lankan government had only succeeded in confining the political solution to paper without taking steps for implementing it. more..

JVP denied access to IDP camps again

Aug 28 (DM) The JVP has once again been denied access to IDP camps in Vavuniya by the defence authorities, Parliamentarian Vijitha Herath said yesterday. MP Herath said that he made a written request from the Defence Ministry to permit four MPs of his party to interact with the displaced civilians still being held in welfare camps. “We asked for permission to visit these camps today and tomorrow. more..

Sri Lanka finance chief hits out at cautious banks

Aug 28 (LBO) Sri Lanka's finance ministry chief lashed out at the country's cautious banks which are reluctant to engage in risky lending and also slammed a credit information office, labeling it 'infamous'. Treasury Secretary P B Jayasundera said the Central Bank, which is the banking regulator may "need to consider the working of the Credit Information Bureau," which shared information about defaulting borrowers among lenders. more..

Batting gives Sri Lanka slight edge

Aug 28 (CI) At long last, the seemingly interminable run of India-Sri Lanka matches, starting from the Asia Cup in 2008, will come to an end on Saturday. However, the bowler-friendly conditions in Dambulla have made it difficult to predict how even these most familiar of opponents will match up. Sri Lanka, almost at full strength, probably have the edge, as their batting hasn't had the embarrassing collapses India have. more..

My Father was abducted, says Apsara Fonseka

Aug 28 (BL) "He was not arrested but was abducted. One whole day our whole family did not know where he was taken," Apsara Fonseka, daughter of General Sarath Fonseka said in an interview with the Boston Lanka News that covered wide range of issues from the detention of General Fonseka to the accusation of Danuna Tilakaratne to the inner strength of Anoma Fonseka. more..

The Defence Secretary and Myself: KP speaks out – 4

Aug 28 (DBS) QUESTION: Thank you for relating these details about these important events of the recent past. Your input provides fresh insight into these matters. But now I want to ask you about the present. Let me start with your relationship with this government particularly the Defence secretary Gotabhaya Rajapakse. You have already told me about your arrest and your first meeting with the defence secretary. more..

Sri Lanka holds withdrawal of on-arrival visa

Aug 28 (AFP) Sri Lanka on Saturday suspended plans to scrap on-arrival visas for most nationals, including visitors from the US, Europe, Australia and Japan. The government had announced it was withdrawing the landing endorsements from September 30 in a move widely seen as potentially damaging to the island's tourism industry, which is recovering from 37 years of ethnic conflict. more..

I need five more, door open – President

Aug 28 (Island) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday stated that he only needed five more members to complete the 2/3rd majority in parliament. He added that before the door was closed however now it is open for anyone who wants to join the government. President said this at the 28th annual general meeting of the Public Administration Service Association at the BMICH. more..

UNP Appoints Committee For LG Polls

Aug 29 (SL) The UNP has appointed a committee headed by Deputy Leader of the party, Karu Jayasuriya to form the party’s strategy to face the local government elections. The committee has been appointed for the local government elections with the aim of entering the election as a strong party. UNP Chairman Gamini Jayawickrema Perera, party secretary Tissa Attanayake and Joseph Michael Perera are the other members of the committee. more..

UNP slams SLMC

Aug 29 (DM) The UNP has criticized the move taken by the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) to support the government for constitutional reforms and is to discuss the matter next week. UNP Deputy Leader Karu Jayasuriya speaking to Daily Mirror online said that the SLMC had contested past elections under the UNP symbol and as such SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem should have consulted the UNP leadership before arriving at any decision. more..

Sri Lanka beat India by 75 runs tri-series final

Aug 29 (CI) Umpiring decisions and manic appealing dominated the first half of India's chase on the best batting track of the tournament, but Sri Lanka assumed control of the final through alert fielding and smart bowling. Dinesh Karthik was given out caught off the thigh pad, Virender Sehwag's plumb lbw was not given, Yuvraj Singh survived a caught-behind before scoring a run, and MS Dhoni survived a close lbw call when on 12. more..

Sri Lanka to get 3 D Echo Cardiology Machine for the first time

Aug 29 (GDI) Colombo National hospital is to receive two 3D echo cardiology machines and it is the first of its kind to be installed in the country’s health sector. Cardiac ailment is one of the major factor that contribute to deaths caused by non communicable diseases in the country. Colombo National Hospital is the major health sector institution which provides the state of the Art patient care services. more..

Education and Knowledge is power

Aug 29 (LG) Knowledge is power which is derived from Education. Education is any act or experience that has a formative effect on the mind, character or physical ability on an individual. In Sri Lanka parents invest on children by educating them. As a result education has become so competitive that there are instances where children attend private tuition classes day and night by making major contributions to “Tuition Culture” more..

Internal armed conflicts, humanitarian laws and the curious transformation of a former diplomat

Aug 29 (TC) Numerous reports suggest that Dr. Jayantha Dhanapala had some interesting things to say when he appeared before the Lessons Learned and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) recently; about aspects relating to the interference of certain States in the internal affairs of other States; about the R2P concept; about the Sri Lankan Armed Forces carrying out a daunting humanitarian operation, saving more..

Lessons Learnt: Passionate intensity from the best is overdue

Aug 29 (LG) Nearly nine years ago, many of us watched in horror as TV screens all over the world showed two 767 jets ramming into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York. These suicide attacks caused both towers, built thirty years earlier as the world’s tallest buildings, to collapse in spectacular fashion resulting in the deaths of nearly 3000 people. The site is now being re-built with a new World Trade Center Tower and a number of smaller office towers. more..

Multilateral diplomacy and our interests

Aug 29 (LG) I was surprised to learn that the government is intending to appoint senior military personnel to manage our foreign relations, being unsatisfied with the manner in which the Foreign Ministry has worked without publicity for instance in having had the LTTE banned in the West. Be that as it may managing our bilateral relations may not be as challenging as managing our multilateral relations. Multilateral diplomacy is a very specialized field. more..

Tamils of a different stripe

Aug 29 (G&M) As the debate about Tamil boat people plays out, Canadians might ask themselves, “In whose interest?” Who has muddied the debate with suggestions that the boats are filled with criminals and terrorists, and why? Again, why all the fuss over an insignificant number of people, when Canada does not have a boat-people problem of the magnitude of Australia’s? more..

Facilitating global capitalism

Aug 29 (LG) A daily paper of 16 August reported in its front page “Sri Lanka has stepped into an industrial economy from the long existing agricultural economy with the construction of the Hambantota harbour which paves the way to an industrial revolution in the country,” President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday. He made these comments at the water filling ceremony of the new Hambantota International Harbour. more..

The necessary battle over presidential term-limits

Aug 29 (LG) The charade is finally over. President Rajapakse has informed Sri Lanka’s Micawberian Opposition that he intends to remove presidential term-limits and run for a third (and, the Grim Reaper permitting, a fourth and a fifth…) term. Clearly Rajapakse pčre means to be President for life, and be succeeded by Rajapakse fils. The UNP has been deluded, yet again, and (wittingly or unwittingly) made to serve the dynastic ambitions of the Ruling Family. more..

Collective effort Contribute Miravodai

'Land is united, but the people are not'

Aug 29 (NF) The people are yet to be united, despite the land being united after the war,l says the General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Communist Party, Minister D. E. W. Gunasekara. “It is true that the land was united after the conclusion of the war a year ago. However we have failed to unite the people as yet. This is a great task before us. There are certain issues that cannot be solved by one single party alone as they are national issues.” more..

‘Bull’, Zero Bull, ‘Infinity Bull’ and Cock and Bull

Aug 29 (LG) Jack Anderson, the controversial American columnist of the 1970s, in his work The Anderson Papers, quotes a tyrannical CEO of the notorious American corporate giant ITT addressing a meeting of ITT executives: ‘Gentlemen, I have been thinking. Bull times zero is zero bull. Bull divided by zero is infinity bull. And I am sick and tired of the bull you’ve been feeding me.’ The bull that citizens of this country and the remaining few of its well meaning leaders are more..

Highly explosive fuel fraud

Aug 29 (SL) Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminal Limited (CPSTL) employees are up in arms against its Chairman for his failure to hold investigations into fuel frauds carried out by the private bowser owners. Continuous fuel frauds carried out by owners of private fuel bowsers over the past several years has now come to a serious juncture due to the failure by Chairman Maj. Gen. (Rtd) M. R. W. de Soyza and more..

A question of justice for all

Aug 29 (LG) Some months ago, a grizzled and soft spoken gentleman somewhere around in his mid sixties told me bluntly in Batticoloa that the people in his area did not 'believe' in the National Human Rights Commission and the National Police Commission. These, he said in perfect schoolmaster's English, were 'constructs' of the Sinhalese government. 'We do not believe in them, we do not think that there is any point in having them or talking about them.' more..

Ranil and his bullish wiles

Aug 29 (SL) The most immediate threat to Sri Lankan democracy is not the rapid monolithic build up of administrative and political power by the Rajapaksa clan, but the visible crumbling of the opposition. The response to the build up of a power bloc evincing anti-democratic tendencies in a country with a history of democratic traditions is the closing of ranks of the opposition to meet the challenge to democracy. more..