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Clinical England keep raising the bar

May 14 (CI) England continue to raise the bar. It was already set pretty high after three consecutive Super Eight victories, but they produced a clinical display against Sri Lanka to secure a place in their first global final since 2004. They bowled with intelligence and skill, fielded with their now customary athleticism and knocked off the runs with barely an alarm. England have never played limited-overs cricket of any form with this verve and conviction. more..

Twenty20 leaves Sri Lanka with more questions than answers

May 14 (IC) Sri Lanka is left with more questions than answers after a disappointing semi-final loss to England in the ICC World Twenty20 that sent them packing. Compared to their fantastic run last year that fell just short but proved them to be the best, most consistent side, they leave the Caribbean with more questions rather than answers. Tillakaratne Dilshan, who carried the batting in the tournament last year, struggled and his form woes from the IPL continued. more..

Sri Lanka hunts for Tamil Tigers operating overseas

May 14 (TA) The Sri Lankan government has vowed to crush attempts to re-establish an international Tamil independence movement just days before a global vigil to honour those killed in the last months of the civil war. Authorities announced yesterday an "operation" to counter Tamil separatist groups and Tamil Tiger propaganda in diaspora communities, prompting fears of a witch-hunt against politically active Tamils abroad. more..

On third-term blues

May 14 (LB) It was the time of rubber hitting tar. The make-or-break moment. The now-or-nothing time of a school year. That’s what ‘third term’ meant and probably still means to school children. You’ve taken things easy over the first two terms. You’ve cheered your team, gone for sports practice, done your scouting or guiding, immersed yourself in school plays and what not and all of a sudden you are in September and wondering how it is that you don’t have all your notes, more..

Sri Lanka's five-year low rates to `stay' as inflation data `encouraging'

May 14 (BN) Central bank Governor Nivard Cabraal said that “encouraging” inflation figures mean he plans to keep the current stance on interest rates, after policy makers last month kept borrowing costs at a five-year low. “It’s too early to tell” whether higher rates will be needed this year, Cabraal said in an interview with Bloomberg Television, speaking from Bloomberg’s Washington office yesterday local time. more..

WUSC Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan business leaders should set example in ethics: senior executive

May 14 (LBO) Unethical practices from the top find its way to the bottom of organizations, and picking the right talent was also important since human decisions can always override regulations, a senior business executive said. "You can't expect the board or the chief executive officer (CEO) to be unethical and be the rest of the organization to be ethical," Suresh Shah, chief executive at Lanka Breweries, said. more..

Four key principles of devolution in provincial administration

May 14 (TC) BBC reported that India has called for effective devolution in Sri Lanka. This has been recently orchestrated at an academic experts’ dialogue held in Delhi. This is a repeated Indian demand. In recent times-especially after May 2009- the Sri Lankan political scenario changed rapidly. Therefore, the current interest for devolution by the Indian External Affairs Ministry Secretary Madam Nirupama Rao rings a bell. more..

Human rights friendly change of face and heart by Rajapakse regime

May 14 (TC) The first anniversary of the end of the war approaches and we are into a celebratory heroes’ week. Whilst the regime will not fail to remind us ad infinitum of the great service it did us in defeating the fascist and ferocious LTTE and continue to accrue political capital on account of it, there is no denying the widespread relief felt over the defeat of the LTTE and the end of the war. more..

Navy rescues a multi-day fishing trawler in distress in southern deep seas

May 14 (MoD) Sri Lanka Navy rescued a Multi-day Fishing Trawler which was drifting due to mechanical failure in the Southern deep seas on 12th May 2010. The fishing trawler named "Jaya Kumaru" had left for deep sea fishing from the Gandara Fisheries Harbour with a crew of five (05) fishermen. The trawler had begun to drift due to mechanical failure putting the crew's lives in peril two days ago. The more..

Second 'Mahilchi Illam' for Psycho-social Promotion of Children Opened at Nadankandal

May 14 (MoD) The second Psycho-social Development Centre "Mahilchi Illam" (Happiness Centre) in the North, constructed using a share of the proceeds collected from an Army organized musical evening was declared open on Sunday (9) at Pandiyankulam Maha Vidyalaya, Nadankandal in Manthe East division. Major General Kamal Gunaratne, Commander, Security Forces, Wanni and Competent Authority for IDPs, more..

Charity match to help ex-child soldiers

May 14 (MoD) The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) will hold a charity match between Indian celebrities and Sri Lankan cricketers here in June to help rehabilitate former Tamil Tiger child soldiers. The event will be held in conjunction with the Sri Lankan cricket board, NGO Habitat for Humanity and UNICEF. Bollywood star Salman Khan will be the brand ambassador for the initiative." more..

US Embassy team meets Wanni commander

May 14 (MoD) A Four-member team of diplomats, attached to the US embassy in Colombo recently visited Wanni and paid a courtesy call on Major General G. D. H. K Gunaratne, Commander, Security Forces, Wanni who is also the Competent Authority for IDPs in the North. Defence Attache Colonel Lawrence A Smith, Ms Smith, Messrs Daniel and Lakisha of the US Embassy during their discussions with Major General G. D. H. K Gunaratne received a more..

Lessons learnt and reconciliation commission: Govt grants Rs 10 m

May 14 (MoD) A seven member commission would be appointed to find out the root causes of the terrorist problem. A total study would be done to find solutions and reforms. The commission will be able to make an estimate of the expenditure needed to function and an initial sum of Rs. 10 million has been allocated for the commission on a proposal made to Cabinet by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Media and Communication Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said more..

Special ward for war heroes in Ayurveda Hospital

May 14 (MoD) The Indigenous Medicine Ministry will take steps to establish a special ward for war heroes in the next construction phase of the Borella Ayurveda Hospital, Indigenous Medicine Minister Piyasena Gamage said after a visit to the hospital recently. He said it is our responsibility to look after all war heroes at all times. As a respect for all war heroes we have decided to construct this special ward. more..

Air force delivers urgently needed medicine

May 14 (MoD) Air Force Delivers Urgently Needed Medicine The first C-130 aircraft carrying urgently needed saline landed at the Ratmalana Air Force Base at 4.30 p.m. yesterday. 18 tons of saline was flown nearly 900 nautical miles from Mumbai, India to Sri Lanka in this flight. The saline will be handed over to the Ministry of Health and Nutrition. The Sri Lanka Air Force had been called upon by the Government to more..

Children of Nintavur back to school

May 14 (LP) The European Union (EU), through its implementing partner the International Organization for Migration (IOM) provides a new secondary school building for the children of Nintavur, in Ampara, eastern Sri Lanka. The Al-Mathina school building, constructed at a cost of LKR 11.9 million under the EU-IOM Community Livelihood Support Programme (CLSP), includes a two level building with an office for the Principal, more..

Pension scheme for trishaw drivers

May 14 (DN) Transport Deputy Minster Rohana Kumara Dissanayake said the Government has decided to introduce a new pension scheme for the benefit of three-wheeler drivers in the country. He was addressing a group of trishaw owners and drivers at Dambulla recently. He said initial steps have already been taken after discussions with the Social Security Board to implement the scheme. more..

Media plays a pivotal role in peace & development

May 14 (GDI) Minister Dr. Keheliya Rambukwella reiterated that mass media institutions should focus attention to address the aspirations of the masses and keep them enlightened on the development work being carried out by the government. The Minister pointed out that this country suffered for three decades under brutal terrorism. The masses were weary of the suffering they underwent during the dark era. more..

IDPs benefit from Cash for Work

May 14 (MoD) A Cash for Work Program has been initiated to provide an income to returning Internally Displaced People by the Emergency Northern Recovery Project (ENRP) with Australian Government aid. Under this program, 50 days of employment is guaranteed and Rs 500 will be paid per day to the returnees, Senior World Bank Communication Officer Chulie de Silva told the Daily News. more..

Permanent ownership deeds for 59,000 Mahaweli settlers

May 14 (DN) The Irrigation and Water Resources Management Ministry will give permanent ownership deeds to 59,000 Mahaweli settlers before the end of June, Irrigation and Water Resources Management Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva told a discussion at the Ministry. Around 15,000 complaints had been received from Mahaweli settlers that they could not get deeds for their lands for the last 14 years. more..

President to take over the Chairmanship of G-15 in Iran

May 14 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa will take over the Chairmanship of the Group of 15 (G-15) from the President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the forthcoming G-15 Summit to be held in Tehran on May 17. The G-15 today accounts for one third of the global population and consists of some of the biggest economies of the world. Its membership comprises 17 developing countries namely more..

Tributes Paid to War Heroes in Kilinochchi

May 14 (GDI) The Army reported that a group of twenty-five disabled War Heroes and their families were symbolically honoured and their dedication lauded during another provincial War Hero commemoration ceremony at Kilinochchi last morning. This ceremony at newly-erected Kilinochchi War Hero victory monument was attended by a host of government officials and tri-service and Police personnel. more..

Inclement weather to batter the island further

May 14 (NF) Many parts of the island have been experiencing heavy showers since early today. According to the Meteorological Department, the inclement weather may worsen with the activation of the South Western monsoon. The island is currently experiencing the end of the inter monsoon weather conditions and also pre south western monsoon conditions. "These weather conditions have been affecting the western province since this morning," more..

24 sq km of Hanthana becomes a HSZ

May 14 (GDI) The Government has taken steps to gazette Hanthana as a High Security Zone due to the highly sensitive nature of its bio-diversity and eco-environment. Accordingly, Environment Ministry has gazetted this region as a High Security Zone under the provisions of act 1980 no.47 of National Environmental Act, section 24 (d) and (e), said the Kandy District Secretary S.M.Gotabhaya. more..

Editorial: Child abductions, then and now

May 14 (LNP) The whole country heaved a sigh of relief when a little girl who had gone missing from the Kelaniya Temple was found recently. The media swung into action when the parents of two-and-a-half-year-old Senudi complained of her disappearance and the police were jolted into mounting a massive search for her. What befell little Senudi and the mammoth effort that both the media and the law enforcement authorities made to trace her should be viewed against the backdrop of more..

Tamil, Sinhalese youths strengthen ties

May 14 (UCAN) A group of young Tamil Catholics have traveled to the south of the country in a bid to build better relations with Christian Sinhalese following three decades of civil war. Some 60 Tamil Catholic technical college students from Aripp in Mannar traveled 200 kilometers to Maggona in Colombo archdiocese on the four day trip to meet Sinhalese communities and youth. The May 9-12 trip for 20 girls and 40 boys was organized by more..

Editorial: Api wenuwen api

May 14 (DM) It’s a truism that a war victory has so many owners. And it belongs to the ordinary soldier more than anybody else. However as the first anniversary of the unification of the country approaches, unfortunately he appears to be the one who is most forgotten while the others continue to make news for right or wrong reasons. Although it is his hard work and sacrifices that finally ensured the more..

Occupations and their hazards

May 14 (DN) Chess players die of heart-attacks. Not all of them, of course. Still, heart attack is often mentioned as the occupational disease of chess players, or ‘wood pushers’ as my mother used to call us (my brother, father and myself), given her preference to outdoor sports and those that required much more limb-movement that the delicate two-fingered dismisplacements over 64 squares over five hours. more..

'Pardoning Tissainayagam, relaxing Emergency Govt. efforts to regain GSP+'

May 14 (AD) UNP MP Dr. Harsha De Silva said that though the Government claims that the GSP plus concession is not essential, the relaxation of emergency regulations and pardoning journalist J.S. Tissainayagam were done with the intention of getting the concession back. He added that on May 20 another high ranking delegation is scheduled to go to Brusselsto re-negotiate with the European Union. more..

Cabraal on Bloomberg TV

President congratulates UK's new PM

May 14 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa congratulating the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, stated that Sri Lanka and United Kingdom enjoy deep and long-standing historical ties. In the current 'post-conflict phase of optimism that devotes priority to economic and social progress, reconstruction and reconciliation', he said, 'I look forward to working closely with you to more..

'Assets declaration should be mandatory'

May 14 (DN) The Centre for Monitoring Free and Fair Elections and Democratic Rights (MENIKE) has called for the amendment of the Declaration of Assets and Liabilities Law to make it mandatory for candidates to declare their assets along with the handing over of nominations. Issuing its final report on monitoring of the Parliamentary election of April 8, 2010, it states that such amendments should vest authority with the returning office to more..

Banks more security oriented

May 14 (LNP) Banks in Sri Lanka must look at viable ventures with the changing economic environment. There will be many co-lateral opportunities with the end of the war, Risk Management Associates, India, Managing Partner Prof. Satish Shinde said. He said Sri Lankan banks are more security oriented, may be because of the conflict in the past and the high cost economy. But the situation is changing now with inflation coming down and reduced bank rates. more..

Cabinet nod for Vavuniya, Chunnakam power line

May 14 (MoD) The Power and Energy Ministry will rehabilitate the power transmission line from Vavuniya to Chunnakam at a cost of Rs. 2,000 million, Minister Patalee Champika Ranawaka said. The project has already received Cabinet approval. Japan will provide financial assistance for the project. The project which commenced under Uthuru Wasanthaya is scheduled to be completed before 2012 end, more..

'Constitutional amendments on staggered basis, bid to tackle 17th A first'

May 14 (Island) NFF leader and Minister Wimal Weerawansa says proposed far reaching constitutional changes are likely to be implemented on a staggered basis. The 17th Amendment to the Constitution and executive presidential powers and privileges will be dealt with first of all. He said that the second and third phases envisaged amendments to the electoral system and the creation of an Upper House. more..

One in three Sri Lanka bus drivers 'on drink or drugs'

May 14 (AFP) Almost one in three Sri Lankan private bus drivers smokes marijuana or drinks alcohol before work, operators said Friday after a study into the high rate of road fatalities on the island nation. "We did a survey of buses operating in Colombo and found that about 30 percent of drivers smoked ganja or consumed liquor before operating their vehicles," Private Bus Owners' Association president Gemunu Wijeratne said. more..

Wimal says Ranil targeted by ‘foreign-funded cult’

May 14 (Island) National Freedom Front (NFF) leader Minister Wimal Weerawansa says proposed restructuring of the main opposition UNP in the aftermath of the latest electoral debacle can be disastrous for the party. UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe, he says is at least acceptable to a section of the international community, whereas those who are seeking to succeed him lack such recognition. more..

Lanka cautions EU on Tigers

May 14 (IL) Sri Lanka's Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Aryasinha said the LTTE's initiative to forming a so called "Provisional Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam" (PTGTE), with "country working groups" at national and regional levels in western countries was a ruse to perpetuate its terrorist struggle, and has urged the European governments not to more..

'President wraps himself in a shawl and pampers wealthy businessmen'

May 14 (LeN) UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera said, the President wraps himself from top to bottom with a shawl and preaches of a socialist economy, but goes on pampering the richest businessmen from top to bottom day in and day out, for reasons unknown to the public. The new Ministers who earlier bungled their own Ministries are now preoccupied with a new task – not building the country or contributing to the alleviation of the acute sufferings of the people but more..

India should not dictate terms to us, says Wimal

May 14 (DM) National Freedom Front (NFF) leader and Minister, Wimal Weerawansa said yesterday that neighbouring India should not dictate terms to Sri Lanka as to what it should do. He was referring to the Indian External Affairs Minister’s comment on the implementation of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. Mr. Weerawansa said the Constitution would be changed in three stages, the first being changes made to the presidency. more..

Number plates to sport three letters

May 14 (DM) The Department of Motor Vehicles is to issue vehicle number plates with three English letters for the newly registered vehicles soon. Minister of Transport Kumara Welgama revealed this yesterday during an inspection tour to the office of the Department of Motor Vehicles, Narahenpita. Sri Lanka began using two English letters instead of the Sinhala auspicious letters 'Sri' amidst criticism in year 2000 and issued 188,925 such number plates to vehicles. more..

Govt. seeks billions for infrastructure projects

May 14 (DM) The government is to go for a another one-billion US dollar (Rs.113 billion) sovereign bond issue by July to raise funds for infrastructure development projects, Central Bank sources said yesterday. This move has been vehemently criticized by opposition political parties with a spokesman describing it as a desparate bid for economic survival. more..

'Country`s economy grinding to a dead halt while President deals with the Treasury like his private till'

May 14 (UNP) UNP MP Dr. Harsha De Silva said the country is headed for an economic disaster never before experienced. The worst part of it, is the Govt. and its economic pundits though are waxing eloquent about their abilities and grandiose plans, they are truly at their wits end without a solution. Because the economic doom and disaster are so acute and gloomy, the Govt. has no alternative except more..

Serve masses first - President tells Ministers

May 14 (GDI) Ministers should think of how they can help the common masses and solve their problems rather than enjoying the privileges and the honour of being a Minister, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said in Galle yesterday . He said each Minister should be determined to do a novel thing which is beneficial for the common masses. The President was speaking at the opening of a new Dharma Mandiraya at more..

Govt. vows ‘home-grown solution to home-based problem’

May 14 (Island) The government was committed to finding ‘home-grown’ solutions to ‘home-based’ problems, Media Minister and Cabinet spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said yesterday. He said so in response to a media query whether the commission to report on the ‘Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation’, to be appointed soon by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, was similar to South Africa’s ‘Truth Commission’. more..

India extends ban on LTTE by another two years

May 14 (PTI) The government on Friday extended the ban on the LTTE by another two years following intelligence reports that remnants of the Sri Lankan Tamil terror outfit were trying to regroup in Tamil Nadu. According to a notification issued by the Union Home Ministry, even though the LTTE has been “decimated in Sri Lanka, recent reports reveal that remnant LTTE cadres and leaders are regrouping in Tamil Nadu“. more..

Evicted residents’ protest

May 15 (DM) Residents of Slave Island whose houses were removed by the UDA recently, staged a protest along the streets to vent their anger over their eviction. The residents staged the protest amidst tight security despite the heavy rain. Speaking at a protest held at the Lipton Circus SLMC Leader Rauf Hakeem said that the Defence Secretary, who heads the UDA, did not have the right to forcibly evict people as he was not elected by the people but more..

Power cut in Jaffna peninsula to continue indefinitely

May 15 (TN) Despite government publicity that all facilities have been restored to Jaffna peninsula the present power cut continues to be enforced in rotation and is likely to remain indefinitely due to shortage of electricity production in the peninsula, Sri Lanka Electricity Board (SLEB) Jaffna office sources said. The failure of the Chinese firm ‘Northern Power, which is alleged to be the shadow company of Basil Rajapakse, more..

2010 Sri Lanka economic update: World Bank

May 15 (WB) During the second half of 2009, the economy expanded by 3.3%, the fastest rate ever recorded since 2002. Indicators, such as increased registration in new motor-vehicle registration and electricity generation, confirmed a strong increase in economic activity for the region. In addition, the agriculture, transportation, and communication sectors showed strong performance in the last quarter of 2009, more..