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Fasting political prisoner in Jaffna Teaching Hospital ends protest

June 28 (TN) A Tamil political prisoner arrested by Sri Lanka Amy (SLA) in 2006 in Chaavakachcheari and detained in Jaffna prison had been continually fasting for the last 21 days requesting not to be transferred to Anuradapura or Vavuniyaa prison and to conduct his case in Jaffna courts in protest against the instruction issued by Attorney General (AG). When his condition grew critical he was transferred to Jaffna Teaching Hospital (JTH) where more..

'India needn't fear China's role in Lanka'

June 28 (TOI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has sought to allay Indian concerns about the growing Chinese influence in Sri Lanka, saying India's role in the island was a permanent feature, unlike other players whose engagement was limited to commercial projects they execute. "The Chinese will come to Sri Lanka, build some projects and go, but the Indians will come here, they will build and they will stay. This is the difference in our relations with China and India," more..

The vanquished and the victors in the spoils of war

June 28 (TC) The recently concluded war with all its human miseries such as loss of lives, widowhood, displaced and maimed civilians, orphans, destruction of properties and denigration of agricultural lands and the disruption to normal life throughout the island was not all that bad as far as a significant part of the populace was concerned. This war economy earned millions for those who exploited a bad situation to win themselves kudos and made them rich overnight. more..

Constitutional Reforms in Sri Lanka: What was asked for, What was promised and What is going to be offered?

June 28 (GV) Constitutional Reforms in Sri Lanka: What was asked for, What was promised and What is going to be offered? In the last Parliamentary Election, one of the key appeals that the United Peoples’ Freedom Alliance made was that the UPFA be given two third seats of the new Parliament so that it can amend the Second Republic Constitution changing the system highly criticized electoral system. more..

Sri Lanka Cricket halts foreign league

June 28 (AFP) Sri Lanka Cricket on Sunday barred its players from participating in overseas domestic leagues including Australia's Big Bash until the World Cup next year. The ban comes as national selectors try to work out a winning combination for the showpiece tournament to be played in the sub-continent in February-April 2011. "The decision affects 76 players now on contract," more..

Sri Lanka police - a World Cup public relations disaster waiting to happen

June 28 (IC) This is a timely warning to those in charge of Sri Lanka police. Get your public relations behaviour sorted out or face a World Cup disaster. Eight months from now the island nation is to act as one of the three South Asian countries hosting the 2011 edition of the World Cup. As part of security arrangements, it means the local police force, involved in venue safety regulations have until then to brush up on their public relations act. more..

Tamil diaspora must contribute towards rehabilitating ex-LTTE combatants appeals TDD

June 28 (TC) Members of Tamil Diaspora for Dialogue (TDD) yesterday, made a fervent appeal to members of the Tamil community especially those members of the Tamil Diaspora to contribute whatever they could towards rehabilitating the remaining 8083 ex-combatants in government custody so that they could enter civil society without delay. Coordinator of the Tamil Diaspora for Dialogue Dr. Noel Nadesan said That many affluent persons who claim to more..

With Friends like India this do we need enemies…?

June 28 (TC) Even going back to the legendary times of Lanka’s Ravana abducting Sita from India, Sri Lanka had to be friends with the many kingdoms on the sub-continent, for the sake of peace and self preservation. Right through the times the theme has been peace and friendship with ‘India’ — in reality many south Indian kingdoms, if Lanka was to be left in peace. more..


June 28 (LG) Point scoring is Sri Lanka government’s agenda and this agenda has extended to incorporate the secrecy that the LTTE imposed and maintained for the past three decades. By leaking the news to the media confirming that a hardcore LTTE diaspora is arriving in Colombo with the effort of LTTE’s Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP, who is currently held in a luxury detention in Colombo, the GoSL engineered a campaign to weaken the section of the pro-LTTE diaspora. more..

Motor bicycles to cost more

June 28 (LB) The prices of the country’s most demanding vehicle, the motor bike, are expected to increase by 5 percent, according to new import duty changes, motor bike importers point out. It has happened as a production duty of 20 percent, which was not levied earlier, has been imposed. As the duties are counted on compound interest, the overall price of a motor bike has increased by 5 percent even though the import duty has been slashed. more..

Mysterious beggar killing

June 28 (NS) There’s a saying that the only time the rich envy beggars is when it comes to having a peaceful sleep. Even though it may sound ironical there is a tinge of truth in that saying, given the fact that the rich have to constantly worry about protecting all the wealth and property they own, even when sleeping. On the other hand, beggars are supposed to have little or no wealth to call their own, leading to a peaceful sleep. more..

Tarzie Vittachi’s “Emergency ’58” re-visited

June 28 (SL) Having first read Tarzie Vittachi’s seminal description of the anti-Tamil riots shortly after it was published and smuggled into what was then Ceylon, I was curious to see whether my original impressions of that book would hold true a half-century later and whether there were any lessons for 21st Century Sri Lanka in that slim volume. I spent most of the most violent of those days in Colombo as a student, just leaving his teens, more..

Thilanga envisions a clean and beautiful city

June 28 (LB) A housing complex with 850 houses in a five acre land in North Borella will be built to facilitate underprivileged people. The Coordinating Committee of the Colombo District meeting at the Shravasthi Hall in Colombo recently discussed future plans for the construction of the housing complex. The meeting was chaired by Petroleum Industries Minster Susil Premajayantha. The welcome address was made by Colombo District Additional Secretary W. N. R. P. Wijeyapala, more..

Fish market mafia cornered

June 28 (ST) The influential “mafia” that is profiting from the high prices of fish will soon feel the pinch when the Ceylon Fisheries Corporation swings into action with counter measures to bring down fish prices. The Minister of Fisheries, Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, said that certain parties within the Ministry and the Ceylon Fisheries Corporation are working closely with private traders, and that this “mafia” is manipulating prices. more..

'Beating Sri Lanka no mean task'

June 28 (PTI) It would not be easy to get the better of Sri Lanka in the Test series in their own den even though India's morale is high after wininng the Asia Cup, says comeback paceman S Sreesanth. The Kerala speedster had missed the South Africa series due to a hamstring strain and was included in the squad for the three-Test series against the Island nation. "India is ranked one and we have been doing very well. Still it is great challenge for us beating Sri Lanka on their own soil. more..

Benefits could accrue if Sri Lanka responds positively to EU demands instead of rejecting them

June 28 (TC) The Sri Lankan government has said it is rejecting the 15 conditions set out by the European Union in relation to extending the benefits of the GSP Plus tariff concession since such demands constitute a violation of our national sovereignty. The government has also announced that it will deny visas to the three members of the panel of experts appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to advise him on more..

Give ear to the needs of two schools for the needy

June 28 (ST) There is a strange stillness though it is a usual school day in progress. Girls and boys in uniform pour out of their classes during the interval but the shouting and laughter that one would expect to hear are absent, broken only by sounds of a different kind. We are in the School for the Deaf at Ratmalana, the oldest and largest in the country, which is nudging the century milestone. more..

Recoiling EU wants Lanka to sacrifice sovereignty

June 28 (NS) The European Commission (EC) has written to the Minister of External Affairs, Prof. G.L. Peiris. The EC has virtually drafted for the minister a letter for him to ink if he (and the Government) wants Sri Lanka to benefit from the GSP Plus facility for a further six months. The EC has put forward 15 conditions that Sri Lanka has to fulfill. If Prof. Peiris solemnly undertakes on behalf of the Government to fulfill these conditions, Sri Lanka will get a ‘break’ worth some US$ 150 million. more..

On battlefields of Jaffna, a new roar: cricket

June 28 (IE) The ruins of a once majestic fort built by the Dutch may be a testimonial to the three decades of civil war that this region has seen, but Jaffna now is on the path of rebuilding. And as it takes its first, tentative steps towards normalcy, one of the projects on the agenda of the Sri Lankan district is cricket — a game that gave it rare solace through those long troubled years. With the weight of the Sri Lankan Cricket Board behind it, more..

Forget the panels, remember the people

June 28 (SL) With all this talk of commissions and omissions and ‘I say’ and ‘how dare you’, I think we may have missed the point. There are a lot of widows and orphans walking around our country. When I visited Menik Farm, I didn’t meet a single person who hadn’t lost a relative. I don’t think it’s right for the UN to mess with our affairs, but I do think it’s right for Sri Lankans to look into our own. more..

UN sets up limited inquiry into human rights in Sri Lanka

June 28 (wsws) The Sri Lankan government has reacted angrily to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s June 22 appointment of an expert panel to advise him on human rights violations in the final stage of the island’s civil war. Thousands of civilians were killed by the Sri Lankan military’s bombardments in the months leading up to the defeat of the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in May 2009. more..

Sand dunes scooped at Ma'n'niththalai

June 28 (TN) Similar to the plunder of limestone in the Jaffna Peninsula, agents of Colombo are now engaged in scooping the sand dunes of the Ma’n’niththalai sandbar, which is of immense natural beauty and of archaeological as well as tourist potentiality, sources in Poonakari said. The fragile ecology of the densely populated Jaffna Peninsula is deliberately destroyed by corporates in the construction industry and by their contractors, more..

Expect austere budget, economists say

June 28 (Island) The government is presenting its ‘mini’ budget for 2010 tomorrow and while public expectations are high, there are real concerns as to how successful the government would be in taking steps to curtail its day-to-day administrative expenses, as ballooning budget deficits threatens to erode investments on much needed infrastructure development and put pressure on inflation more..

Colombo schemes Sinhalicised capital for North

June 28 (TN) Similar to the Sinhalicisation of Trincomalee, the capital of the East, Colombo plans for a new, Sinhalicised capital for the North too at Ki'linochchi, administrative sources working for Colombo on the project said. Ki'linochchi is being prepared for that with an extensive military cantonment along with airstrip, new Buddhist temples and by not allowing the local population to their lands. For every three people there is one military personnel at present. more..

Defender of the Law turns violator and accused

June 28 (LP) The Police force has been established and recognized internationally as of a great need to serve the public for peace keeping defending the established laws and conventions and bringing those guilty of breach of law to justice. One wonders whether each and every officer is aware and conscious of the responsibility placed on him by the people and the government of a nation. Sadly there are instances where keeper of the law takes the law in to his own hands. more..

Lankan teens computer savvy

June 28 (DN) Sri Lanka’s younger generation is becoming increasingly computer savvy with the 15 to 19 age group topping the literacy ratio with 47.6 percent followed by the 20-24 age group 40.6 percent and the least literate being the 60-69 age group with 2.8 percent, a survey revealed. The survey which shows an appreciable overall growth of over 25 percent in all key sectors more..

Indian Naval Chief calls on Secretary Defence

June 28 (MoD) Indian Naval Chief Admiral Verma paid a courtesy call to Secretary Defence Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa Monday morning, at the Ministry of Defence in Colombo. Discussions were held between the two officials to promote bilateral relations and mutual cooperation between the two countries while, enhancing security in the Indian Ocean region. more..

A Loaf of Bread should not be less than 450 gram: CAA

June 28 (GDI) The Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) has taken steps to file legal action against bakers operating in the island for selling a loaf of bread below the standard weight of 450g. According to Bread Ordinance the stipulated weight of a loaf of bread should be 450 gram. “We have reports the traders selling bread in less than the stipulated weight. We will raid bakers and sellers who sell a loaf of bread less than 450 gram in weight” he said. more..

'Country’s education system lacks direction'

June 28 (N360) The country’s top Education official says, after the G.C.E. O/L Exam the future of the Sri Lankan Students is uncertain. Sunil S. Sirisena who is the Secretary to the Ministry of Education says, this situation prevails despite the presence of a University system, Technical and Vocational educational system, and various other government and private educational institutes. He said “there is a deep uncertainty about the future of the students after year 11” more..

With IIFA money, our children can be given milk for 3 years

June 28 (NF) Rosy Senanayake, the United National Party parliamentarian has urged the government to table the agreement signed with the Wizcaraft company to hold the IIFA Awards in Sri Lanka. Addressing a media briefing yesterday, Ms. Senanayake said that with such a colossal sum of money, the country's children could be fed with a glass of milk for three whole years. more..

Indian CM keen to live in Lanka

June 28 (DM) Visiting India’s Madya Pradesh Chief Minister Sivaraja Singh has expressed his desire to live in Sri Lanka and has also sought Sri Lankan citizenship. “I have gone to many countries in the world, but I have never seen a beautiful country like Sri Lanka with an environment decorated in green and yellow and I am interested in living in this country” said Chief Minister Singh at the Diwuramwela Raja Maha Viharaya in Welimada. more..

Defense Secretary issues instructions to double the Army Intelligence unit

June 28 (LeN) The Govt. intelligence unit has reported that though the LTTE was destroyed in the war and its frontline leaders were eradicated, yet the LTTE activities are still in progress most insidiously and clandestinely. Immense focus has been directed towards this discovery. Special units of the defense divisions had been deployed to analyze this report, while arrests are being made of all suspected individuals. more..

Rs. 30 billion needed for public servents' pay hike

June 28 (NF) The government will have to spend an additional Rs. 30 billion an year if it is to grant salary increase of Rs. 2,500 per month to public servants. The main expectation of public sector employees from the upcoming budget is the implementation of the promised Rs. 2,500 salary increase. However, economists pointe out that salry hikes which are not connected to productivity will result in inflation and low growth. more..

Editorial: Solheim’s whimper

June 28 (DM) Erik Solheim bemoans that he has been ‘unfairly’ treated by the Sri Lankan media. Well for that matter, even politicians in Sri Lanka would say the same thing about the media here. One would certainly not be able to find a single local politician who would say he or she had been treated well by the media. Every politician has his/her share of good and bad press experiences. Solheim the ex- special peace envoy from Norway, more..

Private bus strike planned in South

June 28 (CT) Private bus owners in southern province are threatening to strike indefinitely from July 01 if no fare hike is given as per the relevant national policy. President of the Southern Provincial Bus Owners Association Chandana Soyza told 'Colombo Today' that buses plying between Colombo and destinations in the province would also stop their services. more..

JVP in awareness campaign on proposed constitutional reforms

June 28 (CT) The JVP is to hold a series of seminars across the country to educate the people of the adverse effects of the executive presidency and the proposed constitutional amendments would have on the country. The first of the seminars will be held tomorrow (June 28) evening at the Public Library auditorium in Colombo, where a lecture will be delivered by JVP politburo member and parliamentarian Anura Kumara Dissanayake. more..

State trade unions to petition for promised pay hike

June 28 (CT) Trade unions in the state sector are planning to petition the government for the Rs. 2,500 salary increase promised them early this year. The government said in the run up to the January presidential polls that it would increase the salaries of public servants. However, the promise is yet to materialize, says the Government Services Trade Union Confederation's convener Saman Ratnapriya. more..

CID inspector arrested while dumping body in the sea

June 28 (LT) A CID Inspector identified as Chief Inspector Chandana de Silva and another person were arrested yesterday afternoon by Mundalama Police while attempting to dump a dead body in the sea at Paliwasalpaduwa in Mundalama. The residents in the area, seeing the duo attempting to dump the body had alerted the police. The residents had noticed the two men trying to dump the body brought to the beach by more..

Sri Lanka Commends friendly nations for their support

June 28 (MoD) Sri Lanka has commended Russia, China, Iran and the 118 Non-Aligned countries for defending its decision not to allow the UNSG's expert panel to probe alleged human rights violations in the final phase of the battle that crushed LTTE terrorism in May last year. Especially Russia has criticized the appointment of a UN Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka questioning why the opinion of more..

EPDP-TNA talks on national question

June 28 (DM) In what appeared to be a new political development in the post-war period, EPDP Leader Minister Douglas Devananda yesterday contacted TNA leader R. Sampanthan for talks to reach a common understanding on a solution to the national question and other immediate needs of the Tamil people. Minister Devananda said that he had telephoned Mr. Sampanthan and General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah for talks. He quoted TNA’s response as ‘quite positive’. more..