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Countrywide raids to detect low quality drugs

Mar 1 (DN) The National Cosmetic Devices and Drugs Authority will conduct countrywide raids to detect low quality drugs and unregistered drugs and cosmetic devices a Health Ministry spokesman said. According to the spokesman the Ministry has received a large number of complaints from the public on low quality and expired drugs and cosmetic devices. There are a large number of skin whitening (fairness) creams in the market and nobody knows the contents of such products. more..

Mahela Jayawardene mulls legal action after TV remark

Mar 1 (BBC) Sri Lanka vice captain Mahela Jayawardene is considering legal action in response to commentary which implied he was guilty of match-fixing. A state television broadcast suggested Jayawardene deliberately played badly for financial gain in Saturday's cricket World Cup defeat by Pakistan. Jayawardene said his lawyer was drafting a letter to "get to the bottom" of the accusation. The allegation was also levelled at batsman Thilan Samaraweera. more..

Did company use neta-link to bag SL ferry contract?

Mar 1 (TOI) The Madras high court on Monday issued a notice answerable by March 7 on a petition challenging letter of award to Flemingo Duty Free Shop Pvt Ltd — possibly belonging to a former Union minister — to begin a ferry service between Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu and Colombo in Sri Lanka. In his petition, M V Iyer, director of M/s Yashawi Ferry Service Pvt Ltd, claims he formed a consortium with two other companies and bid for the ferry service between Tuticorin and Colombo for more..

ICEU wants private sector pension scheme established

Mar 1 (DM) Inter Company Employees Union (ICEU) said that it would be urging the govt to establish the much needed pension scheme for the private sector going so far as to take it up with the International Labour Organization as well as the World Trade Union Federation (WTUF). The union said efforts that are to begin in March would not only be concentrated throughout the private sector but would be held with both private and public sector trade unions in order to foster support. more..

SEC mulls regulating bank guarantees to stop casino culture

Mar 1 (ST) The SEC is mulling some directives on proliferation of low cost bank guarantees backing investors to purchase Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) following complaints that the degree of over-subscription in public listings does not represent 'genuine' demand. “We received some representations (from the market) on bank guarantees and discussed it at the SEC meeting on Wednesday. This is receiving our attention,” more..

Non-implementing State institutions to be prosecuted

Mar 1 (Island) The Ministry of National Languages and Social Integration has decided to take legal action against State institutions failing to implement the national language policy, Senior Assistant Secretary Buddhapriya Nigamuni said. "As the first stage of the project, 25 graduates will be appointed by the ministry to investigate 50 selected State institutions, in the Colombo district, to ensure the efficient and effective implementation of the more..

LG polls won’t hinder port’s golden hand shake

Mar 1 (Island) The March 17 local Government polls will not affect the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) decision to implement a voluntary retirement scheme to get rid of excess workers numbering 2,000. The scheme however would take effect after the polls. Sri Lanka Ports Authority Human Resources Director Norman Weeraratne said the nod for VRS had already been given by Secretary to the Treasury Dr. P. B. Jayasundera and the relevant circular would be issued after more..

Country will protect those who love the motherland, says President Rajapaksa

Mar 1 (IL) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said those who love their country will be protected by the country itself and an ethical and peaceful society should be created for the future generation by safeguarding the freedom that was gained through great sacrifices. He made these remarks at the opening ceremony of the Swimming Pool and the Training Centre for Water Rescue and Survival Centre (Life Saving and Lifeguard) at the Dharmapala Vidyalaya, more..

TNA MPs dropped from DDC meeting with Basil Rajapakse

Mar 1 (TN) Batticaloa district Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians P.Selvarasa, C.Yogeswaran and P.Ariyanethran have not been invited for the District Development Committee (DDC) meeting that was scheduled to be held on Sunday morning with Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapakse. The meeting was summoned to review the progress of the ongoing development activities and to decide on the future development projects in the district. more..

India to release 49 Lankan fishermen

Mar 1 (DM) Forty nine Sri Lankan fishermen who were detained in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh after they were caught while allegedly poaching in Indian waters will return to Sri Lanka this week, a diplomat in Chennai said yesterday. Sri Lanka’s Deputy High Commissioner Vadivel Krishnamoorthy said six Sri Lankan fishermen were granted exit permits yesterday and would return this evening while another 43 fishermen together with eight fishing vessels would be more..

'Malinga is fit' - Bayliss

Mar 1 (CI) Lasith Malinga, the Sri Lanka fast bowler is available for selection for their World Cup, Group A game against Kenya on Tuesday, according to the team's coach Trevor Bayliss. Malinga, who created a world record at the 2003 World Cup by capturing four wickets off four balls in Sri Lanka's game against South Africa, missed his team's first two matches in this edition due to a sore back. more..

Two year extension for Chief of Defence Staff

Mar 1 (NN) President Mahinda Rajapaksha has appointed Air Chief Marshal WDRMJ Goonetilake as the Chief of Defence Staff with effect from today with a two year extension of service. Air Chief Marshal WDRMJ Goonetilake relinquished Command of the Sri Lanka Air Force on assuming the new appointment. Meanwhile the outgoing Air Force Commander paid a courtesy call to Secretary Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa today. more..

Blackmailer meets his Waterloo

Mar 1 (Island) Akuressa Police arrested a suspect who had been blackmailing a young girl by threatening to hand over a set of her nude to her prospective bridegroom. The suspect had photographed her naked promising to marry her but she had later broken off the affair on finding that he was already married. Angered by her refusal, the enraged man had threatened to show her pictures to the person expected to marry her. more..

Lankans in Libya await evacuation

Mar 1 (BBC) A Sri Lankan awaiting evacuation from the Libyan capital says he was frustrated about the delay. "We are waiting for the Sri Lankan authorities to take speedy action," the engineer speaking from the Libyan capital, Tripoli said. He said that the company he is working with has 207 Sri Lankans. Another Sri Lankan from the eastern town of Benghazi said that the area is now under anti-Gaddafi forces. more..

Sri Lanka may tour Pakistan this year, says top official

Mar 1 (Dawn) A top official of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has hinted that his country could be the first one to help bring international cricket back to Pakistan after the horrors of the deadly terrorist attack in Lahore nearly two years ago. Sri Lanka are likely to tour Pakistan later this year for a series of Tests and One-day Internationals and the officials here are already in talks with the International Cricket Council’s more..

CA to take up LG election petitions on March 21, 22, 23

Mar 1 (DM) The Court of Appeal yesterday decided to categorize into two groups the writ applications challenging the rejection of nomination papers in about 60 local government bodies, and take them up on March 21, 22 and 23. The decision was taken by the Bench comprising Justices Sathya Hettige (President) and Upali Abeyrathne. Deputy Solicitor General Shavindra Fernando categorized the petitions into more..

'Vote for vibrant villages'

Mar 1 (DN) Vote for the ‘betel leaf’ to usher economically vibrant and socially developed villages, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the first major district summit held in support of UPFA candidates contesting the forthcoming Local Authority Election in Anuradhapura yesterday. On the same note the President said that the UPFA had started all its victorious election campaigns from Anuradhapura after paying homage more..

It’s a fishy sort of tale

Mar 1 (EB) Every night the radar systems in Sri Lanka pick up the presence of Indian trawlers off its coastline. Sometimes our boats go as far south as Sri Lanka takes satellite pictures of these trawlers dotting their territorial waters. On the radar screen shots the boats looks like countless stars twinkling in the dark night sky. Every day they count the number of boats they have a visual confirmation of. In the case of some trawlers they also manage to more..

Sri Lanka Tourism promotes the Wonder of Asia at New York Travel Show

Mar 1 (GDI) Sri Lanka's participation at the North America's premier travel event "The New York Times Travel Show" held at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Centre in New York City from February 25-27 has attracted the attention of the participants very much. Sri Lankan show included cultural presentations. The world renowned Sri Lankan Dance troupe, "Channa-Upuli," flown in courtesy of SriLankan Airlines more..

Flood damage: Parliament awaits insurance payment

Mar 1 (DM) Parliament is yet to receive insurance payment for the damage caused by the floods in November last year, an official said yesterday. A top parliamentary official said a report listing out the items damaged and their value had been submitted to the Sri Lankan Insurance Corporation (SLIC) and they were still waiting to be reimbursed for the loss which had been estimated at Rs.45 million. more..

SL deserves helping hand, says Aussie MP

Mar 1 (Island) Member of the Australian Parliament for Bennelong, John Alexander, in his address to the Deputy Speaker on the Main Committee Motion on Sri Lanka, on Feb. 28, said turmoil and conflict in Sri Lanka must not be given oxygen and the country deserved international assistance. He stressed the need for a political solution. Following are excerpts of Alexander’s speech: "The people of Sri Lanka have endured the pain more..

Use left lane or get fined: Police

Mar 1 (DM) The City Traffic Police yesterday said it would strictly enforce the existing laws requiring buses, lorries, trishaws and other heavy vehicles to use the left lane within the Colombo City limits. “The laws couldn’t be implement fully for different reasons but any offender will be fined Rs.550 in future,” the Traffic police said. “Most traffic congestions and accidents take place due to the changing of lanes by these vehicles categorized by the police”, more..

Sri Lanka air force jets crash during air show rehearsal

Mar 1 (NN) Two airforce jets collided with each other over Yakalla while rehearsing for an event killing one pilot. Earlier the airforce said the two pilots of the kfir jets managed to eject in time and land safely using their parachutes while the two air craft’s were destroyed. However the body of one pilot was later found while the other was safe. A civilian was also reportedly injured from falling debris of the damaged aircraft. more..

Sri Lanka port moves to reduce congestion

Mar 2 (LBO) Colombo port has begun building a facility for export containers north of the habour that will help reduce congestion and provide more space for its main transhipment business, an official said. Sri Lanka Ports Authority chairman Priyath Wickrama said it has acquired land for the 'cargo village' at Peliyagoda, a suburb just north of the port. "In future we're going to have a container reception and delivery facility there after which we will not allow boxes inside the port," more..

Sri Lankans nabbed by Greek police

Mar 2 (NN) Five Sri Lankans who were among 15 reported missing in Greece after being given refuge when they fled Libya, have been arrested by the Greek police. The Foreign employment bureau in Sri Lanka said that the Greek authorities had informed the Sri Lankan embassy in Greece about the arrest. Deputy General Manager of the Foreign Affairs division of the Foreign Employment bureau L.K Ruhunuge said that 10 other Sri Lankans still remain missing. more..

President Rajapaksa visits the Kfir crash site

Mar 2 (IL) President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited the location where the two Kfir fighter jets of the Sri Lanka Air Force crashed this morning on 01 March. He inspected the crash site in Weeragula, Gampaha on his way to Colombo after concluding scheduled programmes in Anuradhapura. The President also spoke with residents in the area who witnessed the crash. Two Israeli built Kfir fighter jets on fly pass rehearsals for more..

UK to take action against obtaining forged student visas

Mar 2 (NN) The UK Border Agency has warned Sri Lankan students who attempt to obtain student visas by producing forged supporting documents saying. In February the UK Border Agency detected more than 230 cases of forged documents and misrepresentations in student visa applications in Sri Lanka. As a result of a significant rise in forgeries, the UK Border Agency is conducting very extensive verification checks. UK will consider referring cases of fraud to more..

PM’s speaking from a dream world - Tissa

Mar 2 (AD) A keen interest is growing within the public regarding the forthcoming Local Government election, says Tissa Attanayake. He claimed that this interest is being created to show the people’s opposition regarding the government due to the highly pressured strife for survival. The unbearable increase of vegetable prices can be seen as advice to the country’s people to stop consuming vegetables, the UNP General Secretary stated during a press briefing more..

Kenya scores 142 against Sri Lanka, Malinga takes 6 wickets

Mar 2 (CI) A dogged display from the Obuya brothers kept the varied threats of Sri Lanka's bowling at bay for more than 20 overs to drag Kenya to 80 for 2 by the halfway stage at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. They had plenty of luck as they constructed an unbroken 72-run stand - plenty of edges, close lbw calls and air-drives outside off - but they remained unfazed through the troubles to give Kenya a solid platform. more..

Sri Lanka attacks on fishermen are a wake-up call to India

Mar 2 (HRW) On January 22, the Sri Lankan Navy intercepted an Indian fishing boat from Tamil Nadu. Two fishermen jumped into the sea, but 28year-old Jayakumar stayed on his boat. The two survivors told the authorities that a Sri Lankan Navy official climbed into the boat and tied a rope around Jayakumar's neck. Then the naval vessel dragged the fisherman through the water, strangling him. Ten days earlier, Sri Lankan Navy personnel reportedly fired on an Indian fishing boat, more..

Sampur power plant 99% through

Mar 2 (NS) Contrary to reports here and in India last week that the proposed 500MW joint venture coal power plant at Sampur in Trincomalee was being further delayed by the Lankan Attorney General’s Department raising some 70 queries after sitting on the final documents for months, AG has already cleared 99 percent of the issues and the agreement could be signed at any time, a top official of the CEB said. “The AG raising late queries is all history now”, more..

Sri Lanka risks forced war crimes probe: US

Mar 2 (AFP) Sri Lanka could be hauled before a war crimes tribunal over the killing of "many thousands of civilians" in the final months of its separatist war with Tamil rebels, a top US official said. In the toughest warning since the end of fighting in May 2009, US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, Robert Blake, said Sri Lanka risked a forced international investigation. more..

Sri Lanka’s fresh water fish export kicks off

Mar 2 (GDI) The marketing initiative of processed fresh water fish export was kicked off this morning by the Minister Mr. Rishard Bathiuddeen. This export programme is being jointly implemented by the Sri Lanka Export Development Board and the National Aquatic Development Agency of the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, and it is a five country cross national project in which INFOFISH and Common Fund for Commodities (CFC), act as resource partners. more..

Indian national on pilgrimage dies in Lanka

Mar 2 (PTI) An 83-year-old Indian national who was on a pilgrimage to a Hindu temple located in Sri Lanka's central region of Kotmale died following an accident. The man, named Jeganath Sahu, who hails from Orissa, slipped down the steps leading to the hilly location of the Hanuman temple, police said today. Authorities at the Kandy hospital where he was rushed for treatment said internal hemorrhage led to his death. His wife and son were also travelling with him.

WC 2011: Sri Lanka beat Kenya by 9 wickets

Mar 2 (CI) Lasith Malinga announced his return to full fitness by storming his way to an unprecedented second World Cup hat-trick with an exhibition of yorker-on-demand bowling that proved too much for Kenya's tail at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. The visitors imploded to 142 all out despite dogged half-centuries from the Obuya brothers, who enjoyed plenty of fortune in a determined 94-run stand that kept the varied threats of more..

Don't disrupt Sri Lankan team, says Ranatunga

Mar 2 (PTI) Sri Lanka's World Cup winning captain Arjuna Ranatunga has criticised a commentary by state run Independent Television Network (ITN) that implied Sri Lankan vice-captain Mahela Jayawardene was guilty of match fixing. Following Sri Lanka's 11-run defeat to Pakistan in a Group 'A' match of the World Cup in Colombo, ITN ran a commentary soon after the news bulletin implying that middle order batsmen Mahela Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera had under-performed. more..

'Chasing at Premadasa no longer difficult'

Mar 2 (CI) We always knew the game against Pakistan was going to be a good contest. It was going to be tough for the quick bowlers on that track, especially during the day when it was flat and not doing much. We weren't disciplined enough in the execution of our plans in the first 10 to 15 overs. We gave away quite a few easy boundaries, so that is an area we will definitely address. Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq are two experienced players and they built the Pakistan innings more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 01.03.2011

Sri Lanka: Facing the Separatist Challenge

Mar 2 (LG) The armed conflict between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE caused enormous suffering and devastation killing some 100,000 people, the majority of them Tamil, Sinhalese and Muslim civilians. With the defeat of the internationally banned LTTE in May 2009 and the release of internally displaced people held in closed camps, Sri Lanka now holds the promise of reconciliation and development after three decades of war. more..

Mastering global games of the Tamil Diasporas

Mar 2 (DM) The Tamil Diaspora must never be underestimated. Despite a successful military end to the LTTE; the separatist agenda that it upheld, nurtured and sold thousands of innocent lives for; continues unabated. Effective bans against the LTTE as a terror group have not discouraged the separatist agenda of some of these groups. Promotional campaigns by these groups to help fund their anti Sri Lanka efforts continue to flourish with no controls. more..