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Why a Gandhian inspired system of covernance makes sense in Sri Lanka

Nov 10 (LG) Why we at the Mahatma Gandhi Centre are designing, testing and researching the concept of the Gandhian inspired model of the Gramarjaya is because the Anglo-Saxon model of governance as practiced now in Sri Lanka has not led to cohesion in society. The logical culmination of the creeping social malaise led to the conflict between the LTTE and the Government forces and before that to two insurrections led by the JVP which were also aggressively more..

Men in uniform with AK 47 rifles seen all around Northern Sri Lanka

Nov 10 (TC) Men in uniform, mainly young soldiers holding AK 47 rifles, are seen all around northern Sri Lanka, from Mannar in north-west to Mullaitivu, the last battlefield in the north-east. In Mullaitivu, there are said to be more soldiers than civilians. This is the situation in the largely Tamil north of the island one-and-a-half-years after the end of the Sri Lankan Army’s war against the LTTE. more..

Harassment of credit card holders

Nov 10 (DM) Radio and TV advertisements are full of the benefits of using credit cards issued by various banks. The competition among the banks to market their credit cards is so intense that almost daily various stupendous facilities are offered to the credit card holder. Some banks have even special marketing officers who visit offices that have a large number of employees and extol to them to take advantage of the wondrous gains one can obtain by having a credit card. more..

Diagnosis Needed

Nov 10 (DM) A story about a father who assaulted a Doctor at the Lady Ridgeway Hospital after his infant child died was reported in the news. While specific details of the individual case were not given, it was stated that the father claimed the Doctor was negligent. While resorting to violence should never be an option, it is important to consider whether this is a symptom of a larger problem. The state of the Health service and the relationship between more..

Bishop Kingsley Swampillai : What I said at the LLRC

Nov 10 (TC) I am here to make submissions on the Culture of Human Rights. In the background of erosion of values of all kinds and especially with the consequences of war, human rights have suffered worst causalities. Therefore, a culture of Human Rights where every citizen respects the rights of the other must be cultivated and where the principle of 'Equality before the Law' is respected and applied should be followed. more..

'New MPs should contribute towards formulation of future development plans'

Nov 10 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that in the formulation of all future development plans for the country and in their implementation, contribution of new MPs are essential, addressing new MPs on the future economic plans for the country. The President taking into consideration the suggestions made by the new MPs towards future development plans and for their implementation, instructed the Treasury Secretary to make note of these suggestions when preparing the budget. more..

Reforming higher education for economic development

Nov 10 (SO) Once known for quality of education in Asia, Sri Lanka has now become a victim of the forces of globalized education industry. We no longer receive many foreign students, even through the Commonwealth arrangements, to our universities. Instead, Sri Lanka has become a significant source of supply of students to universities overseas, and the negative economic impact at home is serious. more..

Imelda Sukumar: victim of a propagandist media

Nov 10 (LG) When Jaffna government agent Imelda Sukumar gave her first evidence before the LLRC she was stating facts as she witnessed. She is one of the brave government servants who stood by her people and who did not shirk her responsibilities. She followed the fleeing civilians to Wanni, liaising with both the LTTE and the commanders of the security forces amidst great danger and uncertainty and was a first-hand witness to the most gruesome scenario of more..

Resturant tragedy in Minuwangoda

Nov 10 (NS) Two police teams are still hunting for the two suspects in connection to a triple murder where a restaurant manager and two of his friends were shot dead on Thursday (4) night. Three victims were identified as Ananda Hettiarachchi (42), manager of Holiday Inn restaurant on Gampaha Minuwangoda Road, Sameera Rukshan Munasinghe (33) who was involved in tourism industry and Chaminda Kiriella (39), who worked at the Lotteries Board. more..

Charting a new growth path

Nov 10 (NS) The longest underground tunnel (13km) built in Sri Lanka was declared open this week and more than 10,000 people have flocked to Upper Kotmale Hydro Power (UKHP) project site as of today to experience this novel development activities taking place in the country. The UKHP is the last mega scale hydropower plant in Sri Lanka with an installed capacity of 150MW (consisting of two 75MW units) and it will produce 409GWh per year. more..

Rice flour to be popularised

Nov 10 (SO) Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena directed his officials last week not to allow the sale of wheat flour-based food items, such as bread, buns and cakes in hospital canteens. His decision was based on the need to motivate the people to depend on rice and discourage the consumption of wheat flour production. Food scientists and doctors are of the opinion that the consumption of wheat flour products has been identified as a cause for more..

BoI allays fears over licences

Nov 10 (BL) The Board of Investment (BoI) will continue to issue licences during the run-up to the upcoming Budget-2011 despite rumoured otherwise. It is highly speculated that following the budget, concessions under BoI Act will be strictly limited for thrust sectors or other strategic investments over RS. 500 million. However, under the provisions of the BoI Act, the government is restricted in retracting concessions already awarded, more..

Second-hand vehicle buyers yet to benefit

Nov 10 (SO) Aspiring vehicle buyers who expected a drastic price slash in the reconditioned and used vehicle market after the duty concession by the Government in June are still waiting for the miracle to happen. It has been five months since the new tariff regime was introduced cutting down the duty and other levies imposed at the Customs by half. Despite the highly appreciated boon, the prices of reconditioned and used vehicles remain unchanged, more..

Student unrest, the other side of the coin

Nov 10 (LB) The university student body-politic has taken into their heads to decisively challenge the regime. This is not favorably looked at by the polity, whose middle-class smug existence has now being threatened by the so-called “student unrest” which has alerted them to the sad truth that everything is not well in our paradise isle. I am writing this piece from the standpoint of an undergraduate who is not affiliated to the student unionists by, more..

Budget proposals expected to reduce deficit

Nov 10 (ST) The medium term and long run economic performance depends very much on the government’s ability to contain the fiscal deficit and bring the future deficits to more acceptable levels. Economic stabilization is very much dependant on the containment of the fiscal deficit and is a prerequisite for rapid economic growth. This is why we have repeatedly stressed the need for fiscal consolidation. This is a position that has been accepted by the government, the Central Bank and more..

Misuse of funds alleged in thalassemia report

Nov 10 (ST) Serious financial irregularities have been revealed in a report on a fund set up to tackle thalassemia, a medical problem peculiar to families living in Wayamba, or the North Western Province. Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder, and the majority of the country’s thalassemia patients are concentrated in Wayamba, which comprises the districts of Puttalam and Kurunegala. The teaching hospital in Kurunegala specialises in treating thalassemia. more..

Police recover 56 mobile phones from Prisons Island wide

Nov 10 (LP) Police were able to recover stocks of heroin, mobile phones, SIM cards, chargers and phone batteries during a search conducted in the Prisons in the country. Police recovered 56 mobile phones, 55 SIM cards, 30 phone chargers, 27 batteries from 16 Prisons Island wide said Prisons Commissioner V R de Silva. 16 phones, 15 chargers, 12 batteries and substances weighing 200 g similar to drugs were recovered from the Negambo prison more..

Editorial: Foreign geese, British ganders & legal sauce

Nov 10 (Island) The objective of the on-going war crimes witch-hunt against Sri Lanka is twofold. Firstly, the western powers that have pathetically failed to neutralise terrorist threats to their interests in spite of their much flaunted military might want to cover up their failure by discounting Sri Lanka's victory over terrorism, taking the gloss off it and instilling fear of persecution into the minds of the leaders in other countries who may want to more..

Editorial: Attracting professionals to public sector

Nov 10 (DM) Weeks after his Cabinet Colleague Tissa Witharana lamented the dearth of professionals in the sphere of science and technology here, Minister of Irrigation and leader of House Nimal Siripala de Silva has expressed disappointment at the shortage of engineers in the irrigation field. Minister de Silva is on record that despite heavy scouting around his ministry had only been able to recruit 66 engineers and 45 assistant engineers while more..

New budget ‘will protect interests of public servants’

Nov 10 (NS) With the unveiling of the government’s annual budget being round the corner, there is widespread speculation about the possible budget proposals not only in political circles and business circles but also among the general public. The Nation spoke to Deputy Economic Development Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya to gain some idea about the fiscal measures that the government proposes to implement and more..

'I’d have to be another King Rajasingha'

Nov 10 (LP) President Mahinda Rajapaksa chaired a meeting of the Committee on Controlling Cost of Living and Food Security at Temple Trees recently. After listening to the prices of food items, and other dry rations, President reminded the gathering of a King who ruled Sri Lanka and his food policies. He said “King Rajasingha during his reign decided on the meals of his Ministers where he decided that all should have ‘Kurakkan Thalapa’. more..

Govt seeks more teeth for NGO definitions

Nov 10 (GDI) Sri Lanka Government has decided to give new effects to INGOs and NGOs with the view to broaden its definitions. Under the new move which proposes the amendment to the Voluntary Social Service Organization (Registration and Supervision) Act No 31 of 1980, all INGO/NGOs so far not registered under the above act forthwith should register with the NGO secretariat under the Ministry of Defence and obtain a certificate issued by them. more..

Has the Cardinal’s ideology transformed?

Nov 10 (LB) Speaking before the LLRC Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith asked the government to intensify the search for a political solution to the ethnic conflict, maintain the Rule of Law and Good Governance and be respectful of human dignity of every person irrespective of man-made divisions. He also demanded the government addresses people’s fears that it is attempting to change the demography of the North and East. more..

Polonnaruwa 'govi raja' bids farewell

Nov 10 (BBC) A leading farmer-activist Godawelagedara (GG) Haramanis has bid farewell in Polonnaruwa amidst tears from younger activists and relatives. The victorious fast-unto-death struggle in 2000 for farmers’ rights in Hingurakgoda is among many struggles Mr Haramanis, widely known as “govi raja”, led throughout his life that span over eight decades. He nearly died in that fast. He also led and took part in many other struggles around the island. more..

Father nearly stabbed doctor over child’s death

Nov 10 (LB) Around 10.30 pm on November 2 the Borella police received a phone call from the police post of the Lady Ridgeway Children’s Hospital with a frantic message that a father of a patient was attacking a doctor with a knife. The Borella police headed by Sub Inspector Amila Govinda sped toward ward 3 of the Lady Ridgeway Children’s Hospital. Amila wanted to identify the man who had attacked the doctor. more..

Boston Lanka News: Nov. 09, 2010

Minister Basil welcomes support from NGOs for the development of the North

Nov 10 (LP) Minister Basil Rajapaksa said that he expects the support of the United Nations, International and Local NGOs for the further development of the Northern Province. The Minister added that aid is not only targeted for the development of the area but will also facilitate the IDPs who are in camps. The Minister added this while addressing the Heads of International Organizations yesterday (08) evening at the Presidential Secretariat. more..

‘Blue villages’ to mark oath taking

Nov 10 (DM) The Tharunyayata Hetak Movement in the Central Province is planning to set up ‘Nil Gammana’ (Blue Villages) to mark President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s swearing-in for the second term. “The purpose of this project is to develop the villages and to promote the Nil Balakaaya,” UPFA MP Dilum Amunugama said yesterday adding that the project involved plans to develop ten villages in the Kandy district. Mr. Amunugama said the project was expected to be completed in six years and more..

Sky is the limit for Redbull X Fighters

Nov 10 (NS) The Redbull X Fighters pulled off a daredevil performance at Galle Face Green yesterday, awe inspiring the Sri Lankan spectators. Redbull X Fighters are freestyle motocross (FMX) exponents from the world’s number one freestyle motocross series. Red Bull X-Fighters is the biggest FMX series in the world and for the first time in Sri Lanka four professional FMX riders performed in local grounds, making the evening at Galle Face Green a memorable more..

Sri Lanka aims for 700,000 tourist arrivals next year

Nov 10 (NF) Sri Lanka is aiming at a 700,000 arrival figure for next year, says Dr. Nalaka Godahewa, Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism. Speaking exclusively to Newsfirst at the Sri Lanka pavilion of the World Travel Market in London, he said that the only reason the country could fall short of that target, was simply because some hotels would be going in for refurbishment. “We are again looking very aggressively at the European market, more..

Tele drama actress gets suspended sentence

Nov 10 (Island) A tele drama actress who pleaded guilty to stealing some clothes from a popular supermarket and retention of the stolen property was sentenced to a total on one year’s jail suspended for one year by Colombo Chief Magistrate Rushmi Singappuli. The defence counsels pleaded in mitigation of sentence saying that their client Udari Warnakulasuriya had pleaded guilty to the charges and was even willing to compensate the complainant for the loss caused. more..

Textbook controversies trigger official visits and legal action

Nov 10 (ST) The education authorities have launched a widescale investigation into teaching materials used at international schools. The move follows recent controversies relating to certain textbooks in the curriculum. These texts have been described as presenting a “misinterpretation of several subjects”, and could be deemed detrimental to the “country’s image.” A team of senior officials from the Ministry of Education has been appointed to more..

Govt. to transfer 100 prison officers from Welikada over attack

Nov 10 (Island) Prisons officers who failed to report for duty at the Welikada Prison last Sunday are being interrogated by the Criminal Investigations Department. A team of CID officers visited the prison yesterday to question the prison workers who had kept away on Sunday. The CID believes that some of the prison officers, including jailers, who turned back on Sunday without entering the prison because of the police presence could have been carrying drugs. more..

Ranil questions planned extension of the parliamentary complex

Nov 10 (DM) Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday in Parliament queried as to how the government decided to extend the Parliamentary Complex by constructing another building without consulting other party leaders. Mr. Wickremesinghe said he knew of it only through media reports. In the past, the successive governments never took arbitrary decisions with regard to the construction of Parliamentary buildings or purchasing properties. , more..

GMOA reiterates call for pay hike

Nov 10 (Island) The Government Medical Officers’ Association has told the Salary Commission to revise the doctors’ salaries according to salary compression ratio (SCR) of 1:12. GMOA, ie Salary compression is generally defined as inequity in employee pay occurring when the range of pay between the highest- and lowest-paid employees is unfairly small compared to their range of skills and experience. more..

'Security for Fonseka’s Welikada cell, totally inadequate'

Nov 10 (Island) The security provided for Retired General Sarath Fonseka’s Welikada Prison cell was totally inadequate and the government would have to take the blame,if he was harmed,the UNP said. General Secretary of the UNP, Tissa Attanayake said that he had visited the Welikada Prison after last Sunday’s riot between a group of inmates and police personnel and found that the security for Fonseka’s cell more..

'Emergency used to suppress Opp. and undermine parliament'

Nov 10 (Island) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe alleged that the UPFA government was using Emergency regulations to suppress those who opposed the dictatorial regime of President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Lashing out at the government during the Emergency debate, the Opposition Leader said that provisions of Emergency regulations were being used to suppress the rights of the people. more..

Beware: AH1N1 is coming

Nov 10 (DM) The health ministry yesterday alerted the public and 4.2 million school children about a possible outbreak of AHINI pandemic influenza adding that 15 confirmed cases of the flu have been reported from several parts of the country so far. The significance of the 15 cases reported was that all the victims had no contact with a foreign traveller or gone abroad in the recent past. 15 confirmed cases of Pandemic influenza A/H1N1 had been reported in the country to date since late September. more..

Vocational centre opened at Wijeweera’s hideout

Nov 10 (DM) The hideout of late JVP leader Rohana Wijeweera in Ulapane near Nawalapitiya during the 1988/89 insurrection has been transformed into a vocational and aesthetic training centres and will be declared open by Youth Affairs Minister Dullas Alahapperuma this morning, an official said. The vocational training institute at the house where Wijeweera lived is expected to conduct courses on modeling, more..

Why is France remaining silent? MP

Nov 10 (DM) Government MP Sarath Weerasekera yesterday queried in Parliament how France could now object to the erection of a statue of Al Qaeda Leader Osama Bin Laden while remaining silent on the putting up of a statue of slain LTTE political wing Leader S. P. Thamilchelvan in that country. Mr. Weerasekera said that LTTE terrorism had raised its ugly head internationally. He said the LTTE was a formidable terrorist movement that more..

Health Minister tells nurses: Desist from TU action

Nov 10 (DN) Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said yesterday that his Ministry has taken initial steps towards amending the controversial Nursing Services minute relating to the nurses cadre attached to State hospitals and other institutions and requested all nurses to desist from supporting the sick note trade union campaign to be launched by a certain union today. Minister Sirisena in a statement issued yesterday said that more..

Former child soldiers struggle for a normal life

Nov 10 (IRIN) Cheran was 15 when he was abducted into the LTTE. He ran away two years later in January 2009. "Being with the LTTE was a disaster. I never believed or cared for their cause, and don't like violence in general, but I feel that I might be seen as a terrorist or a violent person by others. This thought is very depressing." Since the Sri Lankan government declared victory against the LTTE over a year ago, more..

Govt. rolls dice today

Nov 10 (DM) The government will take up the controversial Gaming (Special Provisions) Bill for debate in Parliament today despite protests by the opposition and religious leaders. However, the ruling party has agreed to incorporate certain amendments into it during he committee stage of the debate. The decision to debate the Bill in the House today was taken at the party leaders’ meeting last evening. more..

Sri Lanka tightens grip on foreign aid workers

Nov 10 (AFP) Sri Lanka's government said Wednesday it had ordered foreign and local aid workers to register with the defence ministry in a move to put them under greater state control. The government information department said there were 250 international and some 1,000 domestic aid agencies working in Sri Lanka, which would now have to obtain approval from the defence ministry following a change in the law. more..

For early release, Nalini again knocks on HC door

Nov 11 (ToI) More than seven months after an advisory board rejected her plea for premature release for the second time, Nalini Sriharan, serving life term in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, has approached the Madras high court again seeking early release. Justice M Sathyanarayanan, before whom the petition filed by Nalini came up for admission on Monday, asked the government to submit its response by November 30. more..

Nash fifty carries West Indies

Nov 11 (CI) West Indies' batsmen struggled on the first day of their tour match against a Sri Lanka President's XI at Colombo, an 81-run stand between Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Brendan Nash - who went on to make 62 - the only partnership of note as they were bowled out for 176. Kemar Roach and Nelon Pascal, who took the new ball for the tourists, removed both openers early, while new captain Darren Sammy struck in the final over of the day as the Sri Lankans finished on 59 for 3 in reply. more..

Malinga left out of Test squad

Nov 11 (CI) Lasith Malinga, the Sri Lanka fast bowler, has been left out of the squad for the first Test against West Indies which begins in Galle on November 15. Malinga had made a comeback to Tests after an absence of more than two years during the home series against India in July and August 2010. He played the first Test, was rested from the second and bowled only six overs on the final day of the third, as India completed a successful chase more..

Sri Lanka Masters win Cup

Nov 11 (DM) Sri Lanka Masters team led by Marvan Atapattu clinched the CLOBI Cup Masters Twenty20 Cricket Championships in front of the biggest crowd to come to Kensington Oval since the 2007 World Cup final – an estimated 10,000 – filed into ground on Tuesday night expecting the star-studded West Indies to lift the Cup and pocket prize money of US$50,000 after their impressive showing in the preliminaries. Crowds came in their numbers in anticipation of more..

Feuds start in Sri Lanka's first family

Nov 11 (AT) Sri Lanka's first family appears to be at war with itself. With its grip over power tightening substantially and the stakes increasing, feuds between family members are said to be growing. The meteoric rise of President Mahinda Rajapaksa's 24-year old son Namal is reported to have irked several cousins, aunts and uncles. Plump, baby-faced Namal is a neophyte in politics. He was elected this year as Sri Lanka's youngest parliamentarian. more..

Sri Lanka passes gaming law

Nov 11 (LBO) Sri Lanka passed a gaming law which allowed casinos to be set up in areas designated by a minister, legalizing an activity that has anyway operated as clubs with members earlier. The bill was labeled by main opposition UNP as a move that will hurt "the cultural, social and religious interests," of the country by the de facto creation of 'redlight' districts. Some of Sri Lanka's existing casinos are used as pick-up points by commercial sex workers, more..