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15 students of Ruhunu university in hospital over food poisoning

Nov 3 (NF) Fifteen students from the Ruhunu University have been admitted to the Matara General Hospital for food poisoning. “These students were hospitalized last night and that their condition is not serious,” said M.A.S.C. Samarakoon, Director of the Matara General Hospital. Meanwhile, Vice Chancellor Professor Susirith Mendis said that the university medical officer and the health inspector have been informed to submit reports regarding the incident. more..

RMV special unit to nab forgeries

Nov 3 (DN) A special unit will be deployed to nab those forging vehicle registration documents outside the premises of Motor Traffic Department. Transport Deputy Minister Rohana Kumara Dissanayake told the Daily News it is reported that several gangs are engaged in forging documents and swindling money from the people who come to the RMV for their vehicle registrations. “A number of complaints from the public who have been cheated by these gangs were more..

Editorial : Wheat flour ban vs. Democratic dining

Nov 3 (DM) While the canteen of the Sri Lanka Parliament continues to sell food items made of wheat flour a ban has been imposed by the Health Minister preventing the government hospital canteens from selling wheat flour items. If the Sri Lankan nation can wean itself completely from wheat flour, so much the better. There’s no doubt about it. What is preposterous, however, is the haphazard manner in which the government attempts to implement what has now almost become a government policy. more..

Editorial : A CHANGE for the worse

Nov 3 (Island) Many a pair of shoes is said to get worn out between saying and doing. The Obama administration has made a mockery of its much advertised commitment to the protection of human rights by exempting four countries notorious for recruiting child soldiers, from the Child Soldiers Prevention Act of 2008 and extending military assistance to them. They are Congo, Sudan, Yemen and Chad. Washington has sought to justify the continuation of military aid to more..

'I dont like to use the term 'student supppression' simply because there is no such thing'

Nov 3 (TC) Admitting the Government has launched a campaign to eliminate JVP-led student movements crippling the university system in the country, Minister S.B. Dissanayake points out such moves should not be misinterpreted as student suppression. Explaining the reasons behind setting up non-State universities, Dissanayake claims that although the Government is in a genuine effort to improve the standards of education in the country, more..

Int’l schools should be regulated: Grero

Nov 3 (DM) A UNP MP said all international schools should be registered with the Education Ministry to improve their standards. Lyceum International Schools Founder Mohan Lal Grero said that the authorities of international schools operating in the country had, from time to time, requested the Ministry to take steps in this regard. “We have made such requests since 1994. During the time of Dr. Mrs. Tara de Mel, some guidelines were introduced. more..

Sri Lanka’s only international pool going to ruin

Nov 3 (SL) Development of water sports in the country have been severely hampered over the past one and a half years due to the closure of the Sugathadasa National Sports Complex (SNSC) swimming pools which are the largest pools in the country, The Sunday Leader learns. The SNSC’s failure to release the necessary funds and directions to get the main and diving pools renovated has prevented national water sports meets from taking place. more..

Boston Lanka News: Nov 1, 2010

A rifle discovered in Ananda College just prior to Minister Sirisena’s arrival

Nov 3 (LeN) It is reported that when the security division of Minister for health and nutrition, Maithripala Sirisena did an inspection of the College premises prior to the Minister’s visit to Ananda College for a prize distribution ceremony on the 30th to give away awards to students who won scholarships, a point two (02) rifle was found in one of the classrooms. The Minister was the chief guest at this function which was organized by more..

Banks swim in Rs. 104bn excess liquidity

Nov 3 (Island) Dealers said the banking system was holding on to an excess liquidity position of Rs. 104 billion overnight on Monday as banks continued to maintain low dollar position on account of the low yields. Overnight dollars yield 0.25 percent while the rupee yields 7.25 percent through the overnight repurchase window of the Central Bank. "No bank likes holding dollars so they sell and maintain a short position in dollars, which then leads to excess rupee liquidity levels," more..

TV partner Ten Sports make things tough for SLC

Nov 3 (DM) Sri Lanka Cricket have fallen into a deeper financial quagmire as their long term TV rights partner Ten Sports have claimed hard times and have failed to make payments according to the agreement, and have later requested to pay the massive outstanding figure gradually in four instalments, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) sources revealed. According to the signed contract, Ten Sports were to settle a final instalment of US $ 1.5 million within one week of more..

Minister for proper definition of media personnel

Nov 3 (DN) Mass Media and Communication Minister Keheliya Rambukwella yesterday said going by current developments in the field of mass media the time has come to devise a yardstick to identify a true media practitioner. He made this observation yesterday at the inaugural meeting for the launching of the database of diploma holders in journalism of the Colombo University held at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute. more..

Sinhala families to be settled in Jaffna

Nov 3 (TN) Sri Lanka government has decided to settle the Sinhala families claiming resettlement in Jaffna on the coastal areas of Jaffna Fort and Ma’niam Thoaddam in Kozhumpuththu’rai, sources in Jaffna said. Parts of prefabricated houses donated by China to construct 12,000 houses in the areas from Muruka’ndi to Mullaiththeevu to settle Sinhala families have been brought to Jaffna to construct houses for the Sinhala families, the sources added. more..

New software to bar porn sites

Nov 3 (Island) The Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (TRC) was planning to introduce new software to filter pornographic sites, TRC officials told The Island yesterday. They said the software would be ready within the next six weeks. "Currently, we are having discussions with the Information and Communication Technology Department of the University of Colombo for technical assistance to launch the software," more..

Archbishop launches beatification cause

Nov 3 (UCAN) Cardinal-designate Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo has declared open the cause for the beatification of the late Oblate Cardinal Thomas Benjamin Cooray. Archbishop Ranjith made the announcement during an Oct. 29 Eucharistic celebration at Our Lady of Lanka Basilica in Tewatta, where Cardinal Cooray is buried. Cooray, who became Archbishop of Colombo in 1947, was named by Pope Paul VI as Sri Lanka’s first cardinal on Feb. 22, 1965. He died in 1988. more..

Many Chinese firms keen to invest here

Nov 3 (DM) Around 29 investors which include a majority of Chinese companies have expressed interest in investing in various industries in the Hambantota Port including the manufacture and assembling of automobiles, Ports and Aviation Ministry sources said. The other main investment would be the duty free shopping complex that is to come up within the port. A spokesman said that 17 foreign companies were among several companies willing to invest in these industries. more..

Freestyle Motocross Stunt Riding comes to Sri Lanka

Nov 3 (DM) Sri Lanka is going to witness some of the best components and experts in the freestyle motocross daredevil (FMX) riding which is becoming popular world wide with many events of this nature being held around the world. The daredevil riders known as the Red Bull X Fighters Jams is set to thrill the thousands that expected at the Galle Face Green on November 6 from 5 p.m. to 8.00 p.m. Four fearless or popularly known as stunt drivers, more..

VC’s assailants re-remanded

Nov 3 (Island) The two suspects, remanded over the alleged assault on Ruhuna University Vice Chancellor Professor Susirith Mendis, were further remanded till November 15 by Matara Magistrate Udesh Ranatunga. The suspects were identified as M. G. Chandratilleke and W. G. Padmasiri, students of the Ruhuna University. Prof. Mendis came under an attack on Oct. 20 within the Ruhunu University premises while he was speaking to a group of students following a clash more..

Nurses warn of 24 hour sick note campaign if solutions to demands not made

Nov 3 (Island) The Government Nursing Officers’ Association, warned that they would stage a 24 hour sick note campaign next Wednesday, as the Health Ministry had failed to come up with solutions to over five of their demands. President of the GNOA, Saman Ratnapriya, said the Ministry had failed to settle issues surrounding the Nursing degree course, the five day work shift, promotions and the issues regarding the ‘service minute.’ more..

President Rajapaksa returns home after a successful official visit to China

Nov 3 (IL) President Mahinda Rajapaksa returned to the island after a successful three day official visit to China on 1 November. The President and his delegation were in Shanghai, China at an invitation extended by the Chinese Government to participate as a special guest at the closing ceremony of the 2010 EXPO Trade Exhibition which was concluded in Shanghai on 31 October. The six months long Expo 2010 Shanghai China Trade Exhibition in more..

Fire at Norochcholai: Sabotage suspected

Nov 3 (ST) Sunrise over Norochcholai was different last Sunday. It was around 7 am, there was extra light over the Norochcholai coal project, which residents thought was because the plant has commenced generating electricity, but it was not so. An unexpected conflagration, following an explosion, was the cause of the lighting of the sky there. The project billed to produce 900 megawatts is ready with one-third of its capacity on the completion of its first stage. more..

EXIM Bank coming next year

Nov 3 (DM) The Central Bank yesterday said the proposed EXIM Bank (Export - Import Bank) aiming at plugging the brain drain, investing in foreign countries and using Sri Lankan expertise in overseas development projects is likely to be established in the first quarter of 2011. Assistant Governor P. Samarasiri said the Central Bank had proposed to the government to incorporate the proposal to establish the EXIM Bank in the budget 2011. more..

Unions protest against govt. attempts to amend EPF, ETF Acts

Nov 3 (Island) The Inter Company Employees Union affiliated to the JVP is planning an island wide protest against the government’s move to amend the Employees’ Trust Fund Act and Employees’ Provident Fund Act. President of the ICEU and former MP Wasantha Samarasinghe said that the government was going to amend those Acts to siphon off money from those funds. more..

NWSDB unions protest against ‘privatisation bid’

Nov 3 (Island) The National Water Supply and Drainage Board trade unions are up in arms against the setting up of a new company to handle the activities of the Board. NWSDB Employees’ Union General Secretary Upali Ratnayake said that government was planning to convert the NWSDB into a private company called Lanka Water Services Private Limited. He said the proposal to convert the NWSDB into a private company was adopted by more..

Justice Salaam added to Bench hearing SF’s Writ application

Nov 3 (Island) President of the Court of Appeal Justice Sathya Hettige yesterday nominated Justice A.W.A. Salaam as the third Judge to hear the Writ Application, filed by retired General Sarath Fonseka, seeking interim relief. The other judges of the newly constituted fuller bench will be Justices W. L. Ranjit Silva and Upali Abeyratne, who had already heard the Application filed by Fonseka, challenging his expulsion from parliament. more..

Epedemiologists warn: Beware AH1N1 outbreak

Nov 3 (DN) The Epidemiologist Unit of Sri Lanka has informed all sentinel hospitals about a possible outbreak of AH1N1 influenza after a number of new AH1N1 cases were detected in the country. According to acting Chief Epidemiologist Dr. Sudath Peris, more than 20 new AH1N1 cases were found in Sri Lanka during October and a special circular has been issued to all hospitals to prepare for a possible outbreak. more..

President to attend budget sessions

Nov 3 (DM) President Mahinda Rajapaksa will participate in parliamentary sessions during the presidential secretariat vote of the 2011 budget for the first time after the introduction of the 18th Amendment which makes it mandatory for him to attend Parliament once in every three months. Chief Government Whip Dinesh Gunawardane said the President would come to Parliament to present the annual budget on November 22 as usual in his capacity of the Finance Minister. more..

Sri Lanka aims to cut oil import dependence

Nov 3 (Reuters) Sri Lanka aims to double its refining capacity and convert all fuel oil-based power plants to gas to cut its dependence on costly imports, its oil minister said on Wednesday. Susil Premajayantha also said the island nation was planning to overhaul its tax structure in the budget on Nov. 22 -- a move which could mean reduced retail prices of petrol and diesel. more..

Govt to ban slaughter of animal sacrifices– PM

Nov 3 (Island) The government was exploring legal means to ban animal sacrifices in two Hindu Kovils, Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne said yesterday. He said so when he met with a group of Hindu religious leaders at the Gampaha Divisional Secretariat auditorium. The Premier said the slaughter of animals in religious place was brutal resulting in disharmony among religions as well as within the Hindu religion. more..

Gaming centres to thrive: UNP

Nov 3 (DM) The UNP charged yesterday that the government, in a desperate bid to fill its coffers with tax revenue, had introduced new legislation to set up gaming centres wherever possible compromising the cultural, social and religious interests of the country. UNP MP Tissa Attanayake said that the government had reintroduced the Gaming (Special Provisions) Bill in Parliament to be passed next week for the matter. more..

Mathews, Malinga pull off miracle

Nov 3 (CI) Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga produced one of the great one-day international fightbacks to clinch an improbable victory for Sri Lanka, extending Australia's losing streak to six international games since July. The visitors seemed destined for a humiliating loss when they crashed to 8 for 107 chasing 240, but Mathews and Malinga kept fighting, spurred on by noisy support from a crowd dominated by Sri Lankan fans. more..

JSC sacks magistrate

Nov 4 (SL) The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) today (3) sacked former Tissamaharama Magistrate and Additional District Judge for allegedly attacking and threatening persons at a karaoke bar in Colombo 3. The former Tissamaharama Magistrate and District Judge Anura Seneviratne was interdicted on September 27. However, the JSC sacked him today and the dismissal comes into effect from the date he was interdicted. more..

Bail application of jailed university students to be taken up on Nov. 8

Nov 4 (SL) The Colombo High Court has scheduled the bail hearing for the 21 university students arrested for Monday, November 8. The 21 university students were arrested on October 14 for forcibly entering the Higher Education Ministry premises and damaging property. The arrested students were among the group of students affiliated to the JVP backed Inter University Students’ Federation (IUSF). more..

Sangakkara savours stunning comeback

Nov 4 (CI) Kumar Sangakkara is not a man to indulge in hyperbole, but even he rated Sri Lanka's miraculous comeback win at the MCG as one of the two best victories in his 277-game career. Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga somehow rescued their side from 8 for 107 chasing 240, and in the process rewrote a ninth-wicket partnership record that had stood since the 1983 World Cup. That they achieved the feat against the No. 1-ranked side, more..

'Oppression on students by the Govt cannot be endorsed'

Nov 4 (LT) The Organization for University Lecturers for Democracy says that the oppression carried out by the Government on University students cannot be endorsed at all. Professor Chandana Abeyratne, Faculty of History said that 'this oppression by the Government cannot be endorsed. There are many problems in Universities faced by the students. Instead of resolving those problems the Government launches repression pruning their allocations. more..

3 TN fishermen injured in 'attack' by Lankan counterparts

Nov 4 (PTI) Three fishermen from Tamil Nadu were injured and several others lost their nets when they were attacked allegedly by their Sri Lankan counterparts in mid-sea off nearby Dhanushkodi today, police said. The fishermen, who had put out to sea in over 40 country boats fitted with out board engines, were fishing close to the International Maritime Boundary Line when their Sri Lankan counterparts allegedly pelted stones at them accusing them of more..

Sri Lanka buys Shell LP Gas unit

Nov 4 (LBO) Sri Lanka's government has bought liquefied petroleum gas distribution operations of Royal Dutch Shell in the island for 63 million US dollars, officials said. Hiran Seneviratne, a company official, said the agreement was signed at 11.00 am. Sri Lanka bought a 51 percent stake in Shell Gas Lanka, which is a distributor in which the government already has 49 percent stake, and a 100 percent stake in a storage terminal company. more..

'SB has forgotten that he too was once a university student'

Nov 4 (NF) Minister S.B. Dissanayake has forgotten that he too was once a university student, says the leader of the Left Liberation Front, Dr. Wickremabahu Karunarathne. He made this comment when a group of representatives of the Inter University Students Federation (IUSF) met several political party representatives yesterday on various issues including the privatization of free education and the suppression of students movement. more..

Sri Lanka imprisons a military hero

Nov 4 (LMD) Politics is a rough old trade, nowhere more so than in Sri Lanka where the former army commander Sarath Fonseka, military hero of the victory over the Tamil Tigers (LTTE, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam), has been imprisoned after his foray into politics. In January, he ran for president but lost. In April, he was elected to parliament. Now he has now been deprived of his seat and has to conduct his political life from a 12’ x 8’ cell. more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 03.11.2010

Indonesian Sail Training Ship arrives at the Port of Colombo

Nov 4 (SLN) An Indonesian Naval ship, “Kri Dewaruci” arrived at the Port of Colombo in the morning today (3). The ship was ceremonially welcomed by the Sri Lanka Navy on her arrival. A special programme has been arranged by the Sri Lanka Navy for the ship’s crew in order to enhance the friendly relations between the two Navies during the ship’s stay in Sri Lanka. “Kri Dewaruci”, a sail training ship, is 58.30 meters in length and has a displacement of 891 tons. more..

Local Government Institutes should fulfill the needs of the village –President

Nov 4 (LP) President noted that it is the responsibility of the Local Government Institutes to look into the welfare of the village community while supporting the Government in the process of uplifting their livelihood. President Rajapaksa said this ddressing the function held at the President Office this morning (03) to distribute equipment and fire brigades to the Disaster Management Centre and the Local Government Authorities. more..

President to open upper Kotmale tunnel

Nov 4 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa will open the Upper Kotmale tunnel which is considered to be the longest tunnel in the country Thursday. Upper Kotamle is almost the country's last large scale Hydro Power project with the capacity of 150 MW power generation added to national Grid with Japanese aid. This project which was delayed for over a decade due to various social and environmental issues commenced more..

Save Rizana!

Nov 4 (LG) It is the nature of the engagement that makes enemies and friends and therefore some circumspection is called for when one reacts to or grapples with things ‘foreign’, especially in matters that are clearly located, politically and geographically on ‘foreign soil’ There is a thing called cultural specificity. Different people in different places and different time, made of different sensibilities and values, have different preferences. more..

Above The Law

Nov 4 (LG) Investigations by The Sunday Leader have revealed that a powerful businessman from the south close to the government has been allegedly accused in a daring abduction case over a dispute concerning a large block of land in Galle, with the help of the local police. On the afternoon of July 21 this year, young Thirimadura Hiranthika Kalhari watched in horror as four strange men in a blue Land Cruiser with tinted windows bearing registration number GB 8484 more..

'Executive Presidency very good in the past but not now'

Nov 4 (LG) SLG: Dr. Jayalath Jayawardhana, you were a former Minister under the UNP and today you are a MP as well. Welcome to the Straight Talk forum of the Sri Lanka Guardian. We would like to talk present political developments in this discussion. How are you? Yeah I'm good as usual with busy work in politics as well as in personal life. SLG: Is Jayalath Jayawardhana an agent of the LTTE, Agent of the Church, more..

LGB: Economic representation Vs. Minority representation

Nov 4 (DM) D.E.W. Gunasekara- Minister of Rehabilitation and prison reforms: This new scheme was formulated after a number of deep discussions with the Parliament select committee, where we came to a consensus after considering various views. We attempted to formulate a system to comply with the demands of the people for a Ward system. The present system only allows for affluent, rich and moneyed people to contest and come into power, because more..

Is it time to consider empowering our children?

Nov 4 (DM) Some crimes are so horrific we are reluctant to discuss them even among ourselves. Unfortunately, when issues are discreetly swept under the rug, human beings who commit such acts are able to take advantage of the ‘shame’ that society shies away from. It is important to consider whether our reluctance to discuss these issues indirectly facilitates abusers. The media recently reported “at least three children a day are raped daily in Sri Lanka.” more..

Projects worth Rs. 14,000 m under Gama Neguma in every GN division

Nov 4 (SO) Under the new phase of Gama Neguma development projects worth Rs.14,000 million are carried out in every Grama Niladhari division of the country, said R.A.A.K. Ranawaka, Additional Secretary (Rural Economy) of the Economic Development Ministry. Projects for constructing minor irrigation systems, drinking water projects, poultry and concreting rural roads are given priority while more..

The fight for the universities

Nov 4 (SL) While the Sri Lankan government was fighting for control of the North, it had already lost control of many of its universities. “During the last 40 years, the politicians did not sight our universities,” said Minister S.B. Dissanayake in a recent newspaper interview. When Minister Dissanayake did set foot in Peradeniya University in July, he was greeted by protests from the IUSF student union. The two have been locked in a battle ever since. more..