lanka news
| NewsRoom| SL Explorer | Classifieds | Miyuru Gee | E-Cards | Chat Room | Forums | Malini's Kitchen | Lankans Web | jokes |
 SL Time:
News Room
News Papers

 Bottom Line
 Daily Mirror
 Daily News
 Lakbima (English)
 Lakbima (Sinhala)
 Lanka Irida
 Sunday Leader
 Sunday Observer
 Sunday Times
News Sites

 Ada Derana
 Asian Tribune
BBC Sinhala
 BBC Tamil
 Colombo Today
 Lanka Academic
 Lanka Business
 Lanka Everything
 Lanka News Web
 Lanka Papers
 Lanka Truth
 Lanka Web
 Mawbima Sri Lanka
 Ministry of Defence
 Muslim Guardian
 SL Army
 Srilanka Guardian
 Srilanka Watch
 Sudar Oli
 World News
Radio (Live)

Max Radio
Neth FM
 Rasa FM
Rhythm FM
 Shakthi FM
 Sirasa FM
Siyatha FM
 S L B C
 TNL Radio
 Yes FM

 J9 Radio
 L.A. Baila
 Lanka Broadcast
 Nilwala Radio
Rangiri FM
 Syber Viduliya

 I T N
Max TV
 Siyasa TV
V i d e o

Lanka Video
Sri Lankan Tube

Cabinet Reshuffle: To do or not to do?

Nov 21 (SL) President Mahinda Rajapaksa is facing a dilemma on whether or not to go ahead with the cabinet reshuffle as planned earlier. Nevertheless, even at the time of going to print, most ministers in Rajapaksa’s current cabinet were unaware of whether a reshuffle would be announced tomorrow or for that matter on a later day. Rajapaksa, it seems has too many people to please and too many issues to solve. more..

Crisis in SLMC over portfolios

Nov 21 (Island) The SLMC is in crisis again with an MP seeking a ministerial portfolio earmarked for the party at the forthcoming new additions to the cabinet. Although President Mahinda Rajapaksa is certain to invite SLMC leader Rauf Hakeem join his cabinet, another SLMC MP wants the ministerial portfolio for himself. Political sources said that the MP now challenging Hakeem had said that even before the eight man SLMC parliamentary group switched more..

Kulasekara, Eranga in second Test squad

Nov 21 (CI) Sri Lanka's selectors have dumped fast bowlers Dammika Prasad and Thilan Thushara, recalled seamer Nuwan Kulasekara, and included a new face in Shaminda Eranga in their 16-member squad to face West Indies in the second Test starting at the R Premadasa Stadium on Tuesday. The pair will join Dilhara Fernando and another uncapped Test fast bowler, Suranga Lakmal, who have been retained in the squad. more..

Sethsiripaya scanners ‘sabotaged’

Nov 21 (NS) Operations at several mainstream ministries and public institutions housed at Sethsiripaya are said to be in trouble as some of the finger-scanning attendance machines had allegedly been sabotaged last week. Ministry managements have accused employees of breaking these machines so that they can play truant. “It is very difficult to impose any rules or regulations here,” an official said. “These machines were set up as a fool proof way of marking attendance where more..

LSSP goes with Govt., dissidents ditched

Nov 21 (LB) Several senior members of the LSSP were dropped from its politburo at the central committee meeting last week after clear divisions occurred between a group led by Minister Tissa Vitarana and another which supported the adoption of a more critical approach towards the government. Among those to lose their slots were Asoka Weerasinghe de Silva (a former MP), Wimal Rodrigo, Lal Wijenayake (lawyer) and Jayampathy Wickramaratne (PC). more..

Reshuffle plan may pose new challenges to President

Nov 21 (NS) The cynosure of all eyes this week has been the inauguration of President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s second term of office but away from the spotlight, there were many political developments that were somewhat overshadowed by the ‘celebrations’ relating to the swearing-in of the President. As the dust settles on the inauguration, the talk in political circles has shifted naturally to the next item on the agenda: a cabinet reshuffle. more..

President sets out agenda as UNP harps on SF’s woes

Nov 21 (NS) President Mahinda Rajapaksa administered his oath before Chief Justice Asoka De Silva at the appointed time on November 19 to assume duties for a second term as the executive President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. Nearly 150 guests including the Chinese deputy prime minister was present to grace the occasion, which is singularly important for President Rajapaksa and the UPFA government. more..

Archbishop Malcom Ranjith made Cardinal

Nov 21 (SO) Archbishop of Colombo, Dr. Malcom Ranjith was elevated Cardinal by His Holiness Pope Benedict the XVI at the Vatican yesterday. The Cardinal received his red berretta at the Mass, amidst a large gathering of Sri Lankan clergy and laity. 70 Sri Lankan priests, six MPs, and 200 invitees witnessed the solemn and historic ceremony. "Bishop House" sources said the Cardinal will return to the country on November 27 around 8.00 a.m. when more..

Budget 2011 critical for second term achievements

Nov 21 (ST) The budget for 2011 to be presented tomorrow is critical for the achievement of the economic goals of the President’s second term of office. It is through the budget that the economic programme of the government could be implemented. The foremost objective of the President’s second term of office is to achieve rapid economic development, reduce unemployment, mitigate poverty, reduce inequality and regional economic differences and improve the social welfare of the people. more..

Vanquished no less equal to the victor

Nov 21 (ST) Two doctors who served in the Wanni area up to the end of the war, told the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) of the personal anguish and trying moments they faced during those difficult days, while Maj. Gen. Shavindra Silva, Commander 58 Division during the military operations, in his second appearance before the LLRC, gave details of atrocities committed by the LTTE against civilians in the war zone. more..

Talking Point: IGP conspicuous absentee

Nov 21 (Island) IGP Mahinda Balasuriya was a conspicuous absentee on the podium behind President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Friday’s ceremonial inauguration. On these occasions the Service Commanders, Chief of Defence Staff and the IGP are a regular presence standing behind the Commander-in-Chief. But Balasuriya, though present at the ceremony and allotted a seat in the VIP enclosure, did not take his place along side his armed services colleagues on the dais. more..

Child's molestation : NCPA sleuths arrest van driver

Nov 21 (SO) National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) sleuths took in for questioning the 63-year-old school van driver from Kadawatha last week who had allegedly sexually molested a 3-year-old pre-school child in a school van, a fortnight ago. Following a tip off, the driver was arrested at Narahenpita while he was transporting schoolchildren home. The suspect was produced before the Chief Magistrate, Colombo last week and remanded till November 30 more..

Sex education handbook in courts tomorrow

Nov 21 (ST) The Colombo Additional Magistrate Dulanjalie Amarasinghe will tomorrow hear the case in connection with the controversial sex-education handbook circulated among 11-year-olds at the Colombo International School (CIS). On Friday the police handed over to courts a full report compiled by the Ministry of Education which had investigated the issue after a complaint in this regard was made by a parent to the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA). more..

'Rise, Lanka rise; to your full grandeur'

Nov 21 (ST) The unprecedented political events culminating in the swearing-in of Percy Mahinda Rajapaksa for a second term as the President of Sri Lanka were not only contemporary history, but some were also sure additions to the Guinness Book of Records or Ripley's Believe it or Not. One was last Monday's ceremonies to plant 11 lakhs of trees in just 11 minutes. For every minute, 100,000 trees took root. more..

Budget 2011: Can it increase revenue and decrease expenditure?

Nov 21 (NS) The fundamental objectives of tomorrow’s budget should be to increase revenue, reduce government expenditure and provide incentives for savings and investment. The trimming of wasteful expenses would be a key to reducing the budget deficit. Further, the taxation reforms that are expected should be effective in increasing revenue, while at the same time, ushering in a healthy investment climate. The tax reforms should move the country towards more..

Pakistan skipper out on bail

Nov 21 (ST) The ITWF, UK, has called for a full report from its local office in Colombo, in connection with the alleged assault of a Lankan female officer by a Pakistani Captain on board a Liberian-flagged vessel on October 30. Ranjan Perera of the ITWF office in Colombo, said they had already begun talks with the local shipping agent, Wallen Lanka, aimed at getting the necessary compensation and other benefits due to the victim, Second Officer Bhanu Lakshanthi. more..

Budget 2011 - development oriented

Nov 21 (SO) The 2011 Budget will be development-oriented with long-term and medium-term development priorities. Defence, welfare, education and other vital areas of the economy will have their role in the overall development plan, said Deputy Economic Development Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya. He said that the budget will lay the foundation to make Sri Lanka a developed nation, which is a challenging task for the country. more..

New cabinet to be sworn in on Monday

Nov 21 (ST) The new cabinet of the President Mahinda Rajapaksa government will be sworn in Monday morning at the Presidential Secretariat, a government source said. The swearing ceremony takes place ahead of the presentation of budget in Parliament by the President at 1.35 p.m. All ministers and deputy ministers have been instructed to be in Colombo. The reshuffle is to see several deputy ministers being sworn in as cabinet ministers.

No convention for UNP, no salary hike for public servants?

Nov 21 (LB) In a nutshell, the presidential inauguration of a second term happened with much pomp and pageantry (and expense), there would be no public sector pay hike the president said last week, and in the UNP, the so-called new constitution was adopted, and it appeared to be a setback if not a defeat for Sajith Premadasa, who could not write-in the provision for UNP provincial councillors to vote if there is no agreement on any particular party post. more..

US report highlights threat to Maha Sangha on SF issue

Nov 21 (ST) The United States has said that although the government publicly endorses religious freedom, in practice there are problems in some areas. The observation is made in the latest report of the Bureau of Democracy Human Rights and Labour. Titled the International Religious Freedom Report 2010. Among other matters, the report makes a detailed reference to a protest planned by the Maha Sangha in February 2010 over the detention of former General Sarath Fonseka. more..

No UNP convention this year?

Nov 21 (LB) In a new UNP twist in the tale, UNP MPs who are clamouring for reforms charged that certain MPs very close to the UNP leader are planning to disrupt the forthcoming annual convention by taking legal action so that the much ballyhooed reforms will not be ratified. The UNP’s 2010 convention should get underway on December 12. The party’s Working Committee adopted the reforms to the UNP Constitution but they have to be ratified later at a Convention. more..

The Rajapaksa Presidency in Perspective

Nov 21 (Island) If President Rajapaksa should come in for a bit of stick, it is not for the overall record of his just completed first term and the dawn of his second. If anyone deserved it for performance and achievement, it is surely him. An evaluation of a political leader must be historically concrete. What was the context in which he/she assumed power? What was the situation he/she inherited and what did he/she make of that inheritance? more..

The catch that Sarath Fonseka dropped

Nov 21 (Island) Had former Army Commander Gen. Sarath Fonseka remained with the Rajapaksas, he would have been on the dais, where President Mahinda Rajapaksa, on Friday, the day after his 65 birthday, took oaths before Chief Justice Asoka de Silva for a second six year term. Gen. Fonseka would have joined President Rajapaksa on stage as the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), a position the war veteran assumed on July 12, 2009, for a period of two years. more..

Handunneti hit: Who bashed him up?

Nov 21 (LB) JVP MP Sunil Handunnetti and three others were assaulted in Jaffna last Sunday and the incident has ignited the media space. The incident which occurred during the day in a city which has a visible military presence, has raised many questions about political freedom in the North. The JVP MP was in Jaffna to make initial preparations for a protest campaign organized by party affiliate organization ‘We are Sri Lankan.’ more..

Coronation, oops, inauguration...

Nov 21 (LB) President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s supporters might be forgiven for accepting as perfectly normal the huge sums of money dispensed on festivities last week to mark his 65th birthday and the start of his second term. He presided over a military campaign that ended thirty years of war and is now steaming ahead with infrastructure projects of the kind we have not witnessed in recent times. He started his second term on a stronger footing than his predecessors, more..

Electricity rates up from January

Nov 21 (ST) Electricity rates will be increased from January to offset the withdrawal of the subsidy provided by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC), Public Utilities Committee chief Damitha Kumarasinghe said. He said the proposed new rates would be announced on November 29 enabling the people to make their comments. Mr. Kumarasinghe said they were planning to charge extra rates from householders using more than 300 units a month, but would be finalised only after more..

At least seven new Ministers

Nov 21 (NS) President Mahinda Rajapaksa will swear-in at least seven new ministers tomorrow and one of the first functions of the new Cabinet will be to approve next year’s budget prior to its presentation to parliament by the President, authoritative sources said yesterday. Those tipped to receive Cabinet portfolios are Dr Sarath Amunugama, Lakshman Seneviratne, Rauf Hakeem, Mahindananda Alutgamage, T B Ekanayake, Dilan Perera, and Abdul Cader. more..

Pay hike of Rs 2,500 expected

Nov 21 (ST) A wage rise of Rs. 2,500 for the state sector in two stages of Rs. 1,300 and Rs. 1,200 is expected to be a highlight of the budget that President Mahinda Rajapaksa will present in Parliament tomorrow as Minister of Finance. Reforms of the taxation system and a cut in interest rates are also expected according to official sources. The government is to announce a three-year, 2011-2013 development strategy along with more..

Sri Lanka orders Red Cross to quit former war zone

Nov 21 (AFP) Sri Lanka's government has ordered the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to close its offices in the island's former war zone, the Geneva-based humanitarian agency said Sunday. The government told the ICRC to move out of two northern towns after the defeat of the Tamil Tiger rebels in May last year brought about the end of decades of civil war, spokeswomen Sarasi Wijeratne said. more..

Indian-American journo thrown out of pro-LTTE meeting

Nov 22 (PTI) A veteran Indian-American journalist was reportedly thrown out of a pro-LTTE meeting held in New Jersey by the oragnisers, who called him "an agent of Government of India and Sri Lanka." Dr Prakash M Swamy, a senior journalist of New York and a United Nations accredited correspondent, was allegedly manhandled and pushed out of the venue yesterday after being invited to cover the event by the organisers, Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA and more..

Pak-Lanka may expand defence cooperation

Nov 22 (PO) Enhanced defence cooperation between Pakistan and Sri Lanka is likely to be finalised during Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari’s three-day official visit to Sri Lanka, later this month. Diplomatic and government sources said that there was a wide scope for enhanced military ties between the two nations and it would be explored during talks between Zardari and his Sri Lankan counterpart, President Mahinda Rajapaksa. more..

Why Sri Lanka offers a very special brew

Nov 22 (DM) Civil war is never good for business. But even when the hostilities between government forces and the Tamil Tigers were at their bloodiest, there was still a trickle of people determined to visit this stoical Indian Ocean island. Then, suddenly, that old image of Sri Lanka being a teardrop fallen from the face of India took on a macabre new meaning as the Boxing Day 2004 tsunami swept an estimated 60,000 people to their deaths, more..

Asylum seekers are put in no man's land

Nov 22 (SMH) Sumathi Rahavan never predicted the Kafkaesque situation that awaited her young family when she boarded the Australian Customs boat Oceanic Viking last year. The Sri Lankan has given birth as an immigration detainee, been branded a national security risk by ASIO and now faces 24-hour surveillance with three guards watching over her family, which is being held in detention indefinitely. Her husband, Yogachandran Rahavan, also declared a more..

Lalith Weeratunga re-appointed Secretary to President

Nov 22 (GDI) Mr. Lalith Weeratunga has been re-appointed as the Secretary to President with effective from November 19, on the day the President Mahinda Rajapaksa was sworn in for his second term. Meanwhile Mr. Gamini S Senarath has also been re-appointed as the Chief of Staff of the President also effective from Nov 19. Lalith Weeratunga, was first appointed the Secretary to the President of Sri Lanka in 2005 when Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa became the President. more..

Krishna goes to Sri Lanka minus the war's shadow

Nov 22 (IANS) External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna goes to Colombo Thursday with one clear agenda: mark a new beginning in India-Sri Lanka relations minus the shadow of the ethnic conflict and the Tamil Tigers. The highest profile visitor from India after the Tamil Tigers were crushed over a year ago, Krishna will hold bilateral talks, call on President Mahinda Rajapaksa as well as open Indian consulates in Jaffna and Hambantota. more..

Sri Lanka need to build human capital for post-war growth

Nov 22 (LBO) The greatest need for post-war Sri Lanka's plans for accelerated economic growth is an adequate and appropriate human capital base, a top economist and educator has said. Sri Lanka is chasing 8.0 percent growth after ending a 30-year war with Tamil separatists terrorists. "Sri Lanka which is after the war is now planning for accelerated economic growth and the main challenge is the lack of adequate and appropriate human capital." more..

Woman works to rescue Dingo

Nov 22 (wgrz) Tracy Murphy says helping animals has always been a big part of her life. So when her business travels brought her to Sri Lanka, she was devastated by the living conditions of the street dogs there. One in particular caught her attention: When Murphy found him, Dingo was starving, emaciated, and only had three legs. "I couldn't believe it," Murphy said of Dingo's condition. She was inspired to raise enough money to bring Dingo back to the United States, more..

Maldives President discussed currency swap agreement with Sri Lanka

Nov 22 (HNS) Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed discussed a currency swap agreement with Sri Lankan authorities during his visit to Sri Lanka last week, which he cut short following the death of First Lady Laila Ali’s father Ali Abdulla, Special Envoy to the President Ibrahim Hussein Zaki said Sunday. President Nasheed returned to Male Friday afternoon cutting short his three-day official visit to Sri Lanka to attend the swearing-in ceremony of more..

What has happened to the British Citizen?

Nov 22 (LG) The relatives and friends of Subramaniam Gnaneswaran who is a British citizen (passport number 093207376) are worried about his safety following his kidnap in Colombo. He is married with two young children. Having disposed his Cost Cutter retail business in London, he went to Sri Lanka in 2006 with the sale proceeds and purchased a house in Colombo. He rented the house to one Pratheep, whom became his business acquaintance to manage his car sale business he started in Colombo. more..

Making Of History In Historic Times

Nov 22 (LG) These are historic times. Pages and pages of ‘history’ are being written — at times ‘in letters of gold’ — and chapters of history are being flicked over as new chapters are added on. We live in interesting times no doubt, but should also keep in mind what is called the Chinese curse: May you live in interesting times. Modern day ‘historians’ in state propaganda organs should remember the saying that the true history of the lion hunt will only be revealed when more..

India offers assistance to Sri Lanka's Coast Guard Force

Nov 22 (MoD) India is willing to offer their expertise to build Sri Lanka's newly established Coast Guard force India's Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said delivering her speech at the National Maritime Foundation's Eminent Person's Lecture titled 'India as a Consensual Stakeholder in the Indian Ocean: Policy Contours' in India Habitat Centre yesterday, 20th November. She said India was looking how it can work to build Sri Lanka's capacity for the maritime security. more..

Beware of the ‘hurrah’ boys

Nov 22 (LG) In every administration, there are the ‘hurrah’ boys, ‘golayas’ and hangers on. Their role is essentially to say ‘yes’ or nod their head at anything their ‘venerated’ leader says, irrespective of whether it’s right or wrong, fact or fiction, a myth or reality. All for one reason – being in the favoured circle, and to cultivate powerful contacts to get contracts. Make money – essentially that’s the objective. As President Mahinda Rajapaksa embarks on his second term of office, more..

Development or Democratic Freedoms

Nov 22 (LG) Coronation euphoria, as one wag neatly termed it last week, has certainly gripped the less discerning among us. Erstwhile grumblers have now lapsed into what is commonly termed as the ‘if you cannot beat them you must join them’ mode. This most astounding transformation of a flawed but nevertheless functional democracy into a virtual monarchy has taken place with scarcely the proverbial whimper. The law as we see it is now at the whim and fancy of those in power. more..

Jaffna dairy farmers sent to A’Pura for further training

Nov 22 (Cimic) Economy of Jaffna depending mainly on agriculture and fishery which fell due to terrorist activities during the past three decades is now in the process of gradual improving. To back the economy of destitute families in Jaffna Security Forces-Jaffna (SF-J) on initiative of Commander SF-J Major General Mahinda Hathurusinghe recently launched a backyard poultry project distributing fowls and hens for eggs. more..

How Mahinda Rajapaksa re-entered parliament in 1989

Nov 22 (TC) I remember Mahinda Rajapaksa visiting our home in the early 1970s. It was due to the connection he had with my father Gunapala Wickremaratne, who was then Deputy Director General of Education. When I joined the Divaina in 1984 these memories were revived and the relationship was further strengthened. Going through my old diary I came across the date March 4, 1988. Place IRED Institute, Horton place, Colombo 7. more..

Pongu Mahinda: The Second Inauguration of The leader who conquered the world

Nov 22 (TC) During the final Peace Process, the LTTE held several Pongu Tamil rallies, ostensibly to celebrate Tamil culture but actually to flex Tiger-muscles and pay obeisance to Velupillai Pirapaharan. As the LTTE monopolised the Tamil struggle, Tiger members and diaspora sycophants began hailing Pirapaharan as ‘Sun God’ and ‘The Leader of the World’. By exacerbating Pirapaharan’s belief in his own infallibility, more..

Expensive bad taste makes Lanka's coronation drama a garish spectacle

Nov 22 (TC) It was Bollywood’s sort of inauguration, a garish spectacle which caught the eye even as it horrified the mind. Expensive bad taste combined with technical competence made Sri Lanka’s ‘Coronation drama’ a truly memorable occasion. The absence of a throne or a crown or the non-essential concessions to Tamil language did not detract from the true essence of the event: this was no inauguration of a democratic Lankan president; more..

'Sinhala persons from other districts appointed as minor employees in Batticaloa'

Nov 22 (TN) TNA MP P. Selvarasa has sent a letter to President Mahinda Rajapaksa protesting against the appointment of 17 Sinhala persons from other districts as minor employees in the government departments and in divisional secretariats in Batticaloa district. Meanwhile, Ven. Ampitiya Sumanaratne Thero, the chief monk of the Mangalaramaya in Batticaloa fasted unto death in August demanding government to appoint Sinhala officers to more..

There isn’t a lot of difference (between the Rajapaksa govt and the UNP)

Nov 22 (SL) I would have added to the title of this column, “and the rest of the opposition in parliament,” except that it would have made for an inordinately long title to a piece which I am trying to keep under a thousand words. No matter. Not so long ago I wrote a piece that said that there was no “left” left. What follows seeks to deal with the “right” end of the political spectrum. Taking a step back, there were a few respondents who took issue more..

'If we disclose those who fund the sasunata aruna, they would for sure be missing tomorrow'

Nov 22 (LeN) Hambantota District UNP MP Sajith Premadasa said, if the names of the individuals who are funding the ‘sasunata aruna’ are disclosed, for sure, they will go missing tomorrow. Sajith made this comment when speaking at the Sasunata program organized simultaneously with the UNP grama charika program held at the Balagala Baudha Headquarters, Kundasale. more..