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14-year-old boy tortured

Nov 2 (DM) A 14-year-old boy who was alleged to have been tortured by his stepfather for three days was admitted to the Matara General Hospital, police said.The teenager who is a resident of Palpmulla in Deiyandara had told the police that after his father’s death his mother had been living with the suspect and investigations had revealed that the boy had worked as a helper to his stepfather who was a mason. Police said they found several burn injuries and scars all over the boy’s body. more..

India provides 52 four-wheel tractors

Nov 2 (DN) Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka Ashok K Kantha handed over 52 four-wheel tractors to Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa at a ceremony yesterday. This is the first lot of a total of 500 tractors which the Government of India is supplying to Sri Lanka under grant assistance. All the tractors come with a complete set of farm implements, namely, 9 Tine Tiller, Rotovator, two furrow Disc Plough and cage wheel. more..

Sri Lanka's historic Jaffna library 'vandalised'

Nov 2 (BBC) The historic Jaffna public library in Sri Lanka has been closed to tourists a week after a large group of visitors vandalised it, say reports. The library has emotional significance for the island's Tamil minority as it serves the city usually regarded as their cultural capital. The burning of the library by mobs 30 years ago helped trigger the Tamil Tiger insurgency. It was reportedly vandalised by a large group of Sinhalese visitors. more..

It was 'an attempted honour killing,' court told

Nov 2 (TS) A Scarborough father’s attempt to drive over his daughter, her boyfriend and his son-in-law was “akin to an attempted honour killing,” a Crown attorney said Monday. Prosecutor Eadit Rokach is seeking a six-year prison term for Selvanayagam Selladurai, who pleaded guilty last month to three counts of aggravated assault using his mini-van for the June 1, 2007, incident near Stephen Leacock Collegiate. more..

Sewerage lines collapsing

Nov 2 (DM) The Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) said yesterday the sewerage lines in Colombo City had begun to collapse and action was being taken to repair them. S.G.V.D.H. Gunasekera director Engineering Water Supply and Drainage of the CMC said that the lines in the Roxy Garden area had begun to collapse. He said action was being taken to lay a new sewerage line in the area and that work had already begun. This, he said, was a part of a massive Rs 100 million project. more..

Tourism boom certain

Nov 2 (DN) The tourism industry in Sri Lanka will bring USD 2.75 billion to the country within the next five years. Tourist Board Chairman Nalaka Godahewa said that the real growth will begin from 2012 once all infrastructure such as hotels and roads are ready. There is a lot of interest among investors to develop the industry but the process will take sometime’ he said. Over 400,000 tourists have arrived in Sri Lanka up to October this year which is a nearly 47 percent increase more..

Wimalasiri de Mel always stood by the people -PM

Nov 2 (DN) Wimalasiri de Mel was a brave leader who always stood by the people with all difficulties and hardships, Prime Minister D.M.Jayaratne said. Speaking at the funeral of LSSP Secretary Wimalasiri de Mel held at the party headquarters, he said that Wimalasiri De Mel always fought for the rights of the people with courage and determination. He ones opposed the budget proposal presented by his leader stating that it is not good for the public. more..

LTTE's unlawful activity still on, Centre tells tribunal

Nov 2 (Hindu) There is enough material on record for extending the ban on the LTTE for another two years from May 14, 2010 under the provisions of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the Centre maintained. Additional Solicitor-General A.S. Chandhikok made this submission before Justice Vikramajit Sen of the Delhi High Court, who constitutes the one-man tribunal hearing arguments on the validity of the notification extending the ban. more..

Drug racket operated from remand busted

Nov 2 (Island) Police busted a drug ring operated by a Kingpin from inside the Bogambara Remand Prison and took into custody the two couriers with heroin along with a van they were travelling in at Kurunegala on Sunday, police said. DIG Wayamba Range, Nimal A. Lewke said that initial investigations had revealed that the two suspects had cleverly concealed the 3gms of heroin inside the hot water flask and concealed the flask among some electronic items in more..

Laws to monitor int’l schools

Nov 2 (DM) Education Minister Bandula Gunawardane said yesterday laws would be introduced to regulate and standardize international schools, a matter debated in education circles for years. He said educationists had pointed out the need to devise a mechanism for the ministry to monitor these schools. “Educationists have expressed these views at the parliamentary consultative committee meeting. We are trying to introduce a bill to deal with all aspects of education in Sri Lanka. more..

Now, Aussies plan to seek biometrics from visa applicants

Nov 2 (Island) Will Sri Lanka be one of the group of countries, which are to be the initial ‘target’ of an Australian initiative to deny undesirable elements from reaching Down Under through legal routes. A spokesperson for the Australian High Commission yesterday told The Island that Australia was in the early stage of implementing a plan to collect biometrics data from all visa applicants, irrespective of nationality. more..

For Rajapaksa, if its CWG in india, it's Shanghai Expo in China

Nov 2 (HT) China will continue to support Sri Lanka in expanding critical infrastructure like roads, bridges and highways. The Prime Minister of China Wen Jiabao promised his country’s support to the island nation during a bilateral meeting with President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Shanghai where the latter was invited to attend the closing ceremony of the Shanghai Expo 2010. Rajapaksa’s three-day visit to China, beginning October 28, more..

Sri Lanka: Fight against university privatisation

Nov 2 (wsws) The International Students for Social Equality (ISSE) calls on students to oppose the Sri Lankan government’s plans to introduce a new higher education act this month to pave the way for private universities. The new laws will further erode the access of young people to tertiary education and worsen the conditions facing students in the country’s public universities. The preparation for the legislation has been accompanied by a vicious crackdown in more..

Amaraweera Report on SJGH will be fully implemented

Nov 2 (Island) The recommendation of Deputy Minister of Health Mahinda Amaraweera, to check corruption in the Sri Jayawardenepura Hospital, will be fully implemented by Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena. Following a spate of complaints, the Health Minister appointed a three-member probe team, headed by Deputy Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, which also included Dr. Hemantha Beneragama and N. G. Kularatne. more..

Malabe Medical degree not recognized

Nov 2 (Island) The UGC, BOI and the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC) do not recognize medical degrees offered by the Malabe Medical College as it is neither a registered medical college nor well-equipped to provide medical education. The Government Medical Officers’ Association found fault with the government for permitting the private sector to operate medical colleges and allowing such institutions to mushroom in the country. more..

TNDA to expand membership

Nov 2 (Island) Tamil National Democratic Alliance (TNDA) Leader M. K. Sivajilingam yesterday said that as agreed earlier the Tamil Party Forum was expanding its activities to include Plantation Tamil and Muslim Political Parties. "We aim to table a proposal, before the government by December 15, which should satisfy the political aspirations of all sections of the Tamil speaking people in Sri Lanka," more..

Kalupahana alleges CBK undermined ‘reconciliation process’

Nov 2 (Island) Retired Major General Devinda Kalupahana yesterday told the LLRC that an ambitious reconciliation process launched by the then Premier Ranil Wickremesinghe had collapsed in early 2004 due to President Chandrika Kumaratunga’s decision to take over three key ministries. Kalupahana alleged that President Kumaratunga had undermined the process, though she and Premier Wickremesinghe publicly endorsed the final report, which more..

AG objects to parallel hearings

Nov 2 (DM) The Attorney General yesterday objected to the writ application filed by former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka seeking an interim order against his removal from parliament, being taken up for inquiry before the Appeal Court. Deputy Solicitor General Farzana Jameel said the Court of Appeal had referred the matter to the Supreme Court for a constitutional interpretation on the question whether the Court Martial could be considered more..

'Govt. has ignored Pillaiyan's call for Karuna to apologise to country, but wants Fonseka to beg for pardon'

Nov 2 (Island) The government was asking General Sarath Fonseka to seek pardon from it, but had turned a blind eye to Pillaiyan’s call for Karuna to apologise to the country for the wrongs he had committed while being a senior member of the LTTE, the UNP said. UNP MP Gayantha Karunathillake said that the govt, had not only turned a deaf ear to calls for Karuna to be made accountable for his past actions, but more..

SL emission levels far below world average

Nov 2 (DN) Sri Lanka’s emission levels are far below than world average, Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka said. He said that a considerable amount of Sri Lanka’s energy come from renewable sources. There is good potential for expanding wind power in Sri Lanka but issues pertaining to storage and dispatch of solar and wind energy have to be addressed. Sri Lanka is also focusing on Biomass based energy such as Dendro Power, more..

Sri Lanka imports 10,000 cars after tax cut

Nov 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka imported over 10,000 cars in the four months after import duty was slashed in June this year while state revenue has also soared, a senior finance ministry official said. In the first nine months of this year, the government earned about 15 billion rupees on taxes on vehicle imports. In the January-September 2010 period, the government earned 9,920 million rupees on excise duty on vehicle imports alone more..

‘Public might bear the cost’

Nov 2 (DM) Power and Energy Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka said yesterday that if the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation decided not to suply residual oil to the Ceylon Electricity Board at a concessionary rate, the public might have to bear the additional cost incurred by the CEB. “If the CPC stops giving residual oil to the CEB at a concessionary rate, the CEB would incur a loss of around 15 percent,” he said. more..

Three member Judge Bench appointed to hear Fonseka’s petition

Nov 3 (AD) Chairman of Appeal Court has appointed a three judge bench to hear the petition filed by DNA Leader Sarath Fonseka seeking for an order allowing him to participate parliament meetings. The petition will be heard tomorrow, the Ada Derana Court Correspondent said. A three member judge bench was appointed after the earlier two member judge bench appointed to hear the same petition gave a divided decision.

Laugfs gas price down by Rs. 73

Nov 3 (NF) Laugfs gas price has been reduced by Rs. 73 for a 12.5kg. domestic gas cylinder with effect from midnight today. Accordingly, the revised price would be Rs. 1,520. “The decision was taken with the consent of the Consumer Services Authority to give the benefit of revisions in gas prices in the world market as well as revised freight rates to the consumer,” said W. K. M. Wegapitiya, Chairman of Laugfs Gas Limited. more..

'More gaming centres'

Nov 3 (DM) The UNP charged today that the government, in a desperate bid to increase its tax revenue, had introduced new legislation to set up gaming centres wherever possible. UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake told a news conference today that the government had reintroduced the Gaming (Special Provisions) Bill in Parliament to be passed next week. He added that the proposed Bill would give powers to the subject minister to more..

IUSF writes to foreign embassies

Nov 3 (AD) The Inter University Student Federation is reported to have sent a letter to several foreign embassies in the country seeking an opportunity to discuss with them the present university situation. The letters have been forwarded to the Cuban, Chinese, Russian ambassadors as well as to the Indian High Commissioner in Sri Lanka. While expressing that over 203 university students have currently been suspended while another 27 have been placed under remand custody, more..

Navy denies attack

Nov 3 (DM) The Sri Lankan Navy today denied allegations by the Tamil Nadu coastal area fishermen's association that 15 Indian fishermen were injured when they were attacked by the Lankan naval personnel in mid sea early morning today. According to media reports N.J. Bose, the president of the Tamil Nadu coastal area fishermen's association had alleged that the Sri Lankan navy had attacked and injured 15 Indian fishermen near the International Maritime Border Line early morning today. more..

Sangakkara quietly confident ahead of ODIs

Nov 3 (CI) Kumar Sangakkara knows his side has the momentum and he is aware Australia are struggling, but he is not getting carried away with the idea of leading Sri Lanka to their first series victory in Australia. The visitors dominated Sunday's Twenty20 match in Perth and on Wednesday they will begin their 50-over campaign against an Australian outfit missing Ricky Ponting. Only South Africa have a better win-loss ratio than Sri Lanka in 2010, more..

Mahaweli farmers grows expensive mango

Nov 3 (FP) For the first time Mahaweli farmers have introduced Sri Lanka's highest priced mangoes to the local market. Branded as Tom EJC, (Mangifera indicath) is a mango to be priced at around Rs. 700 to the local market and at around Rs. 900 to both UK and European markets. "We are also planning to grow 20 acres of Tom EJC in the Moragahakanda area from next month," Director General, Mahaweli authority, D.M.C. Dissanayake said. more..

'Provide lawyer' to approach Saudi King

Nov 3 (BBC) The human rights organisation that sponsors lawyers for Rizana Nafeek has urged the Sri Lankan ambassador in Riyadh to approach Saudi King to seek clemency. In a letter to the ambassador, the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) to get a senior counsel from the Attorney General's department to approach the advisor to the Saudi King about the death row maid. The Sri Lankan mid, Rizana Nafeek's death sentence has been recently confirmed by the Supreme Court. more..

Court warns editor over 'white flag case'

Nov 3 (BBC) The editor of an English weekly was warned by the Sri Lankan judiciary for what they called critcising witness. Courts told the editor of Sunday Leader not to criticise witnesses who are appearing at the hearing against the former army commander. In the case against General Sarath Fonseka widely known as the "white flag" case, the military chief is accused of spreading public disaffection by quoting allegations that the defence secretary ordered more..

Our children struggle on behalf of education of future generation - Parents of students

Nov 3 (LT) Parents of University students state that their children are struggling on reasonable demands for the benefit of future generation's education. The parents made this comment at a media briefing held in Colombo this morning (02). They also stated that 'a crowd was demonstrating who pretended to be parents. We must say they were not and we are the genuine parents. They accused the children as spoilt brats and without parents. more..

Australia seek to regain winning feeling

Nov 3 (CI) Sri Lanka's victory in the Twenty20 has given Australia plenty to think about. They haven't won an international match since the Lord's Test against Pakistan in July and, while they will claim their focus is on winning this series, as much as anything that is for the momentum that it would give their Ashes campaign. Ricky Ponting, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Hauritz and an out-of-form and under-pressure Michael Hussey are back in the squad, more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 02.11.2010

Against the Kleptocratic State

Nov 3 (LG) In my article Kleptocracy and 18A in The Island of September 28 I pointed out that unless we get rid of the kleptocratic state and move towards its polar opposite, the meritocratic state, the expectation that we can outmatch the performance of Singapore and the East Asian countries will remain bizarre. In this article I want to argue that the kleptocratic state provides an important part of the answer to the question: What went wrong in Sri Lanka? more..

Honesty is not the best policy

Nov 3 (LG) The Island editorial today highlighted the fact that honesty is rarely seen in Sri Lanka. From those who manipulate their CVs to obtain employment to those who encourage their children on their behalf it has become du jure in our country that honesty is not the best policy for survival. Even those university graduates who obtained loans to finish their degrees and absconded to foreign climes and more..

DSC students conform standards for 'Aqua Kid Award'

Nov 3 (MoD) First batch of Defence Service College (DSC) students confirmed the standards set to qualify for the 'Aqua Kid Award' on 01st Nov 2010 in a simple ceremony held at the DSC Swimming Pool. The first batch of 48 students displayed their competency in 8 prerequisites laid down to qualify for the award, in presence of the licensed coaches of SCA under the supervision of Sqn Ldr NA Gallage SLAF who is also a qualified swimmer. more..

France helps Trinco development

Nov 3 (DN) The reconstruction of 98 km A15 road from Thirukkodiyamadu to Trincomalee, 41 km B10 road from Allai to Kantale and 11.9 km c-class road from Mawadichenai to Ganesapuram are currently being undertaken with French assistance. They are part of the Trincomalee Integrated Infrastructure Project funded by the French Development Agency (AFD). The project started in 2005 as part of the post-tsunami reconstruction effort also include the construction of more..

State terrorism stays on having thrown out Tamil terrorism it spawned

Nov 3 (LG) The world is being repeatedly told that terrorism of the Tamils has been defeated through an humanitarian operation, as to how, we do not understand, with nearly 40,000 civilians killed and tens of thousands maimed in the racist war during the early part of the year 2009 alone. It is often made out that terrorism is second nature to the Tamil people and therefore they have to be treated as such. more..

On a quest to co-exist with gentle giants

Nov 3 (NS) Hundreds of elephants die each year: Poisoned, electrocuted, shot to death by farmers or worse, run over by trains or falling into wells, only a relatively lesser number of the majestic elephants that once freely roamed the jungles of Sri Lanka die of natural causes. On the other hand, the instances of elephants straying into human settlements, destroying crops, houses and trampling and killing humans have increased more..

An Open Letter to the Sri Lankan Ambassador to Saudi Arabia

Nov 3 (LG) As you are well aware the fate of Rizana Nafeek, the young Sri Lankan Muslim girl facing the death sentence is very much in your hands as the Ambassador for Sri Lanka, as you are on the ground there relating to this case. The lawyer who was arranged by your Embassy to represent Rizana for whom we paid the fees wrote to us last week stating thus: "..........we want to assure you that we are still doing our best in this case and are not sparing any effort, and more..

Child Porn: Think of a way to crush that ‘Thorn’

Nov 3 (LG) Criminals use the Internet to achieve ulterior motives. No nation could monitor thousands of child pornographic sites nor arrest a million offenders in a day. Child pornography is certainly a heinous crime. In Sri Lanka, new laws are urgently needed to combat this growing menace. In addition, parental control over children is a top priority in a child’s agenda. Educative material on the dangers posed by child porn should be included in a social subject at school. more..

The dark side of student power

Nov 3 (NS) The war between the government and unruly university students has intensified during the past few weeks with 28 undergraduates being remanded and another 203 pupils – mainly from Peradeniya, Jayewardenepura, Rajarata and Ruhunu Universities – being suspended. The issue has risen to the level of making headlines everyday by overshadowing all the other issues and matters faced by the society. more..

Obama's 'Deepavali' visit to New Delhi and it's Implications for Sri Lanka

Nov 3 (TC) Except for the single piece by an Indian columnist (a former senior civil servant), there is hardly any mention, leave alone assessment, in the Sri Lankan newspapers, of a portentous event with (at least) indirect implications for our country, and which has been discussed in publications and seminars from Washington to Delhi, Islamabad, Tokyo and Djakarta. That is the Deepavali visit of President Barack Obama to India followed by Indonesia and Japan. more..

Sri Lanka post 2010; the Challenges and Opportunities

Nov 3 (DM) As we move into a new decade, unlike ever before there is renewed hope and opportunity for economic and political resurgence. However, the future of Sri Lanka's economic health will largely depend on continued political stability, technocratic efficiency, return to genuine peace, and continued policy reforms--particularly in the area of fiscal discipline and management. The 27-year conflict and high government expenditure that had contributed to more..

‘Military music is still music. Military justice is still justice’

Nov 3 (LB) We carry blow an edited version of an article by Brigadier Ranjith Rajapathirana (RSP USP psc LLB, Attorney-at-Law of the Supreme Court. Director Legal - Sri Lanka Army) which has been sent to this newspaper by the Army, in explanation of Courts Martial processes. We publish the letter in the interests of concern generated by recent focus on the matter of Courts Martial: more..

Come off it! Sri Lanka isn’t paradise on Earth!

Nov 3 (SL) Contrary to the attempts to spin-doctor every excess of the current regime and its sins of omission by those whose names hardly need specifying to anyone familiar with the media in this country, Sri Lanka has very serious problems that stem, primarily, from the militarism, racism, triumphalism and brutality that appears to pervade society and is increasingly taken for granted, as a ‘fact of life,’ thanks to the seemingly never-ending barrage of more..

This is a hit

Nov 3 (SL) The Sunday Leader’s biggest headlines generally involve itself, which is kinda sad. Now, however, the ‘private’ media is ganging up on the paper, which is even worse. Behind it all, Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Ranil Wickremesinghe are laughing. They get two birds with one stone. The Sunday Times has attacked the Editor of this paper using misleading headlines like ‘Editor Makes A Mistake’ to reveal the buried nugget that she got a name wrong in cross-examination. more..

They did it or she did? Compensation likely?

Nov 3 (LB) From the way things are going, it looks as if Sri Lankan housemaid L.P.Ariyawathie who allegedly suffered at the hands of her Saudi employer will not to get a red cent as compensation, due to the official bungling by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Employment Bureau (FEB) and the Sri Lankan High Commission in Saudi Arabia. Ariyawathie came into the limelight when she returned home on August 21, more..

Cashew plantation in Wilpattu

Nov 3 (LB) The Civil Defence Force (CDF) is clearing up 6000 hectares in the Kondaichchi, Silawathurei and Wilpattu North sanctuary to plant cashew -- blatantly disregarding environmental and other laws, claim environmentalists. The CDF’s project will have an adverse effect on the water level of the Kal Aru river and would escalate the elephant-human conflict in the area. “To carry out a project of this nature one needs the permission of the Mannar land Use Committee and more..