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Two of Duminda’s security cops want transfers

Nov 6 (SL) Two police constables who were part of MP Duminda Silva’s security contingent have requested transfers. The two constables had reported back to the Mirihana police station last week. The constables had requested the DIG for the Nugegoda range not to use them for outdoor police work and to also transfer them to another division. The two constables fear retaliation from supporters of slain Presidential advisor Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra. more..

Sri Lanka face battle to save series

Nov 6 (CI) Sri Lanka remained ahead after another attritional day in the third Test in Sharjah, but not to the extent required if they are to be confident of squaring the series. They are now left hoping for another of the famous Pakistan collapses that gave them the series the last time these two sides faced off. In the morning, a mix of old-school batting and innovation from Misbah-ul-Haq and butter-fingered fielding helped Pakistan frustrate Sri Lanka and more..

Sri Lanka opens new chancery with help from spirit world

Nov 6 (KT) In an inaugural ceremony on the premises of a new office building in Shindang-dong-- a ceremony imbued with spiritual significance as rites of four major religions were incorporated, Sri Lanka opened its new chancery, Nov. 1. As if to emphasize the country’s rich tradition of religious tolerance, religious invocations from practices familiar in Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and Christianity, as well as Sri Lanka national rituals, were performed to more..

Many petitions to the court against the draft bill

Nov 6 (HN) Minister Dallas Alahapperuma states that the draft bill on under utilized assets through which the govt will take over businesses which incur losses or do not have any productivity will be presented to the parliament on the 09th of November. Participating at a function which was held at Vidyaratne Buddhist Temple at Thalpavila in Matara today, Minister stated that 37 institutions are scheduled to be taken over under this proposed draft bill. more..

Swiss Court criticised for backing Tamil deportations

Nov 6 (SI) Refugee agencies have blasted a ruling by a Swiss federal court backing the repatriation of rejected asylum seekers to post-civil-war Sri Lanka. The Federal Administrative Court said despite existing human rights concerns it was still safe to send asylum seekers back to all but one area of Sri Lanka - thereby upholding a decision made by Swiss migration officials at the start of the year. The ruling has already made waves, with the more..

Airport Express owes Rs. 11.4 Million

Nov 6 (SL) The Civil Aviation Ministry owes the Railway Department over Rs. 11.4 million for the Airport Express train service. The Railway Department said that the Ministry had not paid the money for using the train between May and August this year. Operation of the train service between the Katunayake International Airport and Colombo came to a halt on August 27 owing to engine failure. The Railway Department charges Rs. 1,400 per kilometer to operate a train service and more..

Pro-Rajapaksa stand reason for ill-treatment of Tamils:CPI

Nov 6 (PTI) CPI today alleged that the Centre's pro-Rajapaksa stand was the main reason for Sri Lanka's "continued ill-treatment" of Tamils in that country. Instead of standing behind the Tamils and making efforts to find a lasting solution, the Govt, for reasons best known to it, continue to support Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa, CPI National Secretary D Raja charged at a press conference here. Reiterating the CPI's stand that there was the need to find more..

Website blocking 'a brutal crackdown'

Nov 6 (BBC) Media watchdogs in Sri Lanka have raised serious concerns over the latest move by the govt to block certain websites seem to be critical of the govt. The Free Media Movement (FMM) said the govt is now targeting the new media despite facing international outcry over the threats and intimidation of media in Sri Lanka. In a statement issued on Saturday, the ministry of mass media and information said websites carrying “any content relating to Sri Lanka” more..

UPFA members deny Mayor’s charges

Nov 6 (DM) UPFA members of the CMC today denied allegations made by Colombo Mayor A.J.M. Muzammil that they broke open a room at the Town Hall and took away the keys. CMC opposition spokesman Riza Zarook said that they had not taken any room keys at Town Hall while stressing that they could enter the opposition leader’s office any time. He also accepted that the police had taken the keys of another room. He said the opposition requested for a room from the Western Province more..

Army to build a five star hotel in Colombo

Nov 6 (DM) The Sri Lanka Army is planning to build a five star hotel in Colombo and is currently looking for a suitable land to implement the project, Military spokesman Brigadier Nihal Hapuarachchi said. Recently Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya emphasised the need to have a separate company within the management of the Army in carrying out development and construction projects effectively at low cost by following the tender procedure of the govt. more..

SL chief selector criticises team

Nov 6 (CI) Duleep Mendis, Sri Lanka's chairman of selectors, has lashed out at the players and coaches of the national team for their dismal performances against Pakistan in the ongoing Test series. "The performance of our cricketers is way below of what we expected of them," Mendis said."We may not have played Test cricket in the UAE before but then we should have gone there a few weeks ahead and got ourselves acclimatised to the pitches and conditions. more..

Ajantha Mendis on the road to recovery

Nov 6 (IC) Ajantha Mendis is on the road to recovery and is expected to return to competitive cricket later this month, after suffering an injury to his lower back in September, his manager Roshan Abeysinghe told Island Cricket this week. During Australia's tour of the island, the 26-year-old pulled out of the second Test and the series after complaining of back pain. Due to the injury, he has been omitted from the ongoing Test series against Pakistan and the upcoming ODI series against more..

No elephants for politicos

Nov 6 (SL) Elephants will not be given to politicians at any cost, Minister S. M. Chandrasena said. The Minister also said that several temples in the island have also requested tamed elephants but there is a shortage. He said that there is a request for approximately 300 tamed elephants but the authorities can only provide around 120 elephants. As a result requests by politicians and other organizations for tamed elephants will not be entertained, the Minister stressed. more..

Sri Lanka records over 7,000 child abuse complaints

Nov 6 (Xinhua) Sri Lankan authorities said that over 7,000 complaints of children being abused have been recorded this year. The National Child Protection Authority said most of the complaints included children being sexually abused or molested by their parents, guardians or people known to the victims. Sri Lanka has a national telephone hotline to report child abuse and most of the complaints had been received on the hotline and they were authenticated, more..

PBOA alleges corruption in transport sector

Nov 6 (SL) The Private Bus Operators Association (PBOA) says corruption and malpractices in the transport sector are continuing. PBOA President Gemunu Wijeratne told The Sunday Leader that the Association will take its concerns to the Geneva based Human Rights Council if the govt fails to address the issue by November 14.“If the govt does not act by the 14th, we will complain to the Geneva Human Rights Council about the issues faced by Sri Lankans,” he observed. more..

Country slipping back to 1970-77 era with controversial Expropriation Bill

Nov 6 (NF) Law and order situation takes a backseat as people take the law into their hands. President Mahinda Rajapaksa last week came up with a sound and a strong argument in supportive of Sri Lanka’s bid for Commonwealth Games 2018. He made his bid on Saturday, October 29 at a sports breakfast in Perth hosted by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on the sidelines of the CHOGM. President Rajapaksa had said winning the bid to hold Commonwealth Games in more..

Costal cities under threat of climate change

Nov 6 (DM) Some 70% of Sri Lanka’s urban population and 80% of its economic infrastructure networks are concentrated in coastal cities which are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, climate experts said. The experts said climate change increases the country’s vulnerability to sea-level rising, flooding, salination of water resources, storms, cyclones and drought. This view was expressed by experts at a workshop on Climate Resilient Action Plans more..

TNA travel to the USA viewed with hostility by the Mahinda Administration

Nov 7 (TC) This government is going along the path of destruction; that is looking from the side of the poor and the proletariat. Prices are rising, while incomes of workers are not rising to compensate for inflation. In reality, people have become poorer, as their buying power is becoming less and less. Art, music, drama and culture in general, has lost support as the people are unable to stretch beyond their day to day needs. Writers write because there is so much to write about. more..

Single dominant ethnicity-religion ‘enslaves’ Independence Square

Nov 7 (TC) Independence square in Colombo looks beautiful. Walls have been removed from Cinnamon Gardens police station, the National Archives and most of the state owned buildings in the area and the walkways used by the citizens of Colombo for daily exercise have been extended. Previously it was one walkway, but now there are many, extending in various directions. Those huge trees which are a hallmark of this beautiful city, can now be better appreciated. more..

'Media should protect women and children'

Nov 7 (SO) The Mass Media has a great responsibility in improving the socio-economic standard of the people especially to empower women, said Child Development and Women’s Affairs Minister Tissa Karalliyadda. He was addressing a one day workshop on media and women, organised by the Child Development and Women’s Affairs Ministry in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund. The minister said that the mere physical development more..

How long can the UPFA’s honeymoon with gangland survive?

Nov 7 (LB) There are two ways in which the affiliation between the UPFA government and the goons and gangsters it uses and as a quid pro quo protects, may unfurl; the Marcos way or the Hitler way. Before I offer you my guess how things will go let me explain the difference. Ferdinand Marcos sat atop of a regime which wove a complex web of relationships with the underworld, rogue elements in the military, corrupt senators and semi-feudal landlords. more..

Correcting a distortion by Prof. Savithri Gunasekere

Nov 7 (LB) I write with extreme dismay at a reference to me in Prof. Goonasekere’s article last Sunday entitled ‘Creating ‘Knowledge Hubs and Destroying University Autonomy’ (Sunday Island, Oct 30). She writes as follows: “Drs. Dayan Jayatilleke and Rajiva Wijesinha who were academics in the national universities have publicly supported the militarized leadership training programme. Dr. Jayatilleke sees in the leadership programme an excellent model for creating more..

'Ranil should withdraw charges/stop witch-hunt'

Nov 7 (LB) UNP Southern Provincial Councillor Maithri Gunaratne speaks out against the dictatorial moves by the party Leader Ranil Wickremesinge and what the dissidents plan to do regarding the suspension of MP Buddhika Pathirana and Western Provincial Councillor Shiral Lakthilake. Q: What do you have to say about the four member committee appointed by UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to conduct the disciplinary inquiry against MP Buddhika Pathirana and more..

Editorial: The killing of FARC leader

Nov 7 (Island) Nobel laureate Barack Obama has added another feather to his cap. His govt has been instrumental in dealing a paralysing blow to another guerrilla outfit posing a serious threat to the US. Leader of FARC or the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, Alfonso Cano––his real name was Guillermo Leon Saenz––has been killed in a raid conducted by the Colombian troops with the help of the US. The location of Cano's camp was traced with the help of more..

Greed for money results in murder

Nov 7 (SO) It was a painstaking investigation done by the CID to trace the killers of Dr. Priyanka Prasad Jayasinghe who vanished after firing nine shots from a pistol. The killers made their escape on a motorcycle. On that fateful night the two assassins had been waiting for some time near the doctor,s private dispensary at Mahaedanda at Karandeniya until the he emerged from the dispensary and walked towards his car parked on the opposite side. more..

One law for the Rajapaksas and their favorites and another for the rest of us

Nov 7 (TC) The long-awaited LLRC report is, finally, ready. But can it promote accountability or assure justice in a country where contempt for law is a hallmark of governance? Until last month, those who felt unprotected by the Lankan legal-system and, consequently, appealed for international intercession, were either Tamils or Rajapaksa-opponents. Last month, a brother of Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra sought the help of the Commonwealth to more..

A favour to Sarath Silva

Nov 7 (Island) If Sarath Nanda Silva [who would have been one of the greatest judges in living memory had he stuck to being a judge only, instead of being the ‘political judge’ and ‘judicial terrorist’ which he became] continues to have the sense of humour he once possessed, and/or conventional good manners, he would, by now, have sent ‘Thank You’ cards to each and every one of the Members of Parliament who signed the Motion calling for a Parliamentary Select Committee to more..

Ethical dilemmas in the gift relationship

Nov 7 (NS) At its annual Berlin Humanitarian Congress, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) discussed some of the ethical dilemmas it has faced over the past 40 years. The report, published this month, is entitled Humanitarian Negotiations Revealed: The MSF Experience. Dutch journalist Linda Polman argued in her book War Games that humanitarianism has become a massive industry that, along with the global media, forms an unholy alliance with warmongers. more..

Rishad to lead business delegation to Belgium

Nov 7 (FT) A business delegation led by Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen is scheduled to visit Belgium from 16-17 November. The delegation will include Director General/Sri Lanka Export Development Board Sujatha Weerakoon and representatives from the private sector. This is the first time in over a decade that such a high level business delegation visits Belgium. It is considered as a reciprocal visit to the visit more..

The critical situation facing the Tamil People in Sri Lanka

Nov 7 (CT) The humanitarian situation in the Tamil-speaking area in the North and East, more than two years after the so called ‘end’ of the war, between the Govt of Sri Lanka and the Tamil people, is the most serious the Tamils have faced in their 2,500 years of recorded history. In the six decades that I have campaigned for the rights of the Tamils to live with equality, dignity, safety, and now to live at all, I cannot think of any period in which they have been in such a dreadful situation. more..

SC grants Microsoft leave to appeal in piracy case against software retailer

Nov 7 (FT) The Supreme Court granted leave to appeal with the petition filed by the Microsoft Corporation of USA against the order of the Commercial High Court of Colombo. The Bench comprised Chief Justice Shirani A. Bandaranayake, Justices P. A. Ratnayake and Chandra Ekanayake fixed the matter for hearing on March 14 next year. The High Court in its order had refused to issue the Interim Injunction the Microsoft had sought preventing the proprietor of more..

This race is for my mother

Nov 7 (ST) As the New York City Marathon is flagged off this morning, there will be a determined son who will run in his mother’s memory. Among the 45,000 plus who have taken up the challenge, will be Sri Lankan Dayan Abeyaratne, 40, “to celebrate my mother’s exemplary courage” and also to recognize the generosity of all those who helped pay for the costly medications that kept her healthy enough to carry out her mission. more..

SEC to advertise for Director General’s post after Nov. 15

Nov 7 (Island) The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will advertise for the post of Director General after Nov 15 in the wake of outgoing Director General Malik Cader being promoted as Advisor to the Finance Ministry on Capital Markets. "Malik is still with the SEC and he will be moving to the Treasury next week and it will be after November 15 that we will be going public with the advertisements," SEC Chairperson Indrani Sugathadasa said yesterday. more..

Korea bound SL fishermen: Fisheries Inspector’s approval not needed

Nov 7 (Island) Sri Lanka Foreign Employment Bureau (SLFEB) said that the certificate of the Fisheries Inspector of the area was not required by fishermen who had experience and had secured between 116 and 120 marks in the Korean Language Proficiency Examination to be recruited as fishermen in South Korea. SLFEB noted that 9,998 applicants have passed the Korean Language Proficiency Examination under the Employment Permit System. more..

World’s longest dragonfly migration via Sri Lanka?

Nov 7 (ST) Last week, a large cloud of dragonflies was observed along the west coast near Colombo. Subsequently, an increase of dragonflies was sighted in many areas islandwide. This sudden appearance of dragonflies in large numbers raised the curiosity of the public. This wave of dragonflies was first reported moving southwards in large numbers on October 20 morning. One of the witnesses, Nashath Haffi of the Field Ornithology Group of Sri Lanka (FOGSL) says more..

'D. A. Rajapaksa believed that the duty of Rajapaksas was to serve the country'

Nov 7 (DN) PM D M Jayaratne yesterday said the late Minister D A Rajapaksa firmly believed that the duty of the Rajapaksa family in the Ruhuna Giruvapaththuwa is to serve the common masses, particularly the downtrodden. In a special statement over the 44th death anniversary of late minister and one time Deputy Speaker, D A Rajapaksa, the Prime Minister said the late minister had an unwavering faith in a domestic economy based on agriculture and local industries. more..

World’s largest solar powered vessel arrives in H’tota today

Nov 7 (DN) The world’s largest solar powered vessel will arrive at the Hambantota harbour today. This Swiss vessel named PlanetSolar is on a world tour to mark the first solar boat expedition. This vessel will make a stopover at the Hambantota harbour today and pass Galle port and arrive at the Colombo harbour on Nov 16 for a brief stopover. Switzerland Ambassador to Sri Lanka Thomas Litscher revealed this during a meeting with Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa more..

Unemployed graduates demand immediate filling of govt. vacancies with them

Nov 7 (Island) Unemployed graduates who had been waiting for nearly a decade for jobs, yesterday, demanded that the government fill the remaining vacancies in the public sector with them immediately. Media Spokesman of the Combined Association of Unemployed Graduates (CAUG) Dhammika Munasinghe told The Island that they would launch a countrywide poster campaign from today to make people aware as the first stage of their agitation. more..

'Muslims have contributed much to economic uplift'

Nov 7 (DN) I am pleased to send this message to mark the Eid al-Adha, the Festival of Sacrifice, celebrated by the Islamic community at the conclusion of the period of the annual Haj pilgrimage, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said in a Haj message. The message: “Millions of Muslim pilgrims from the world over demonstrate their commitment to enrich their lives spiritually and obtain the divine blessings of Allah through the Haj pilgrimage to the Holy City of Mecca. more..

Management Faculty reopens only for exam

Nov 7 (Island) The Management Faculty of the Colombo University which remain closed for last two weeks following clashes between two rival student groups will open tomorrow only for examinations of third year students. Dean of the Faculty, Prof. H.B. Karunaratne said that the academic activities would re – start when disciplinary inquiries were over. "We suspended 15 undergraduates who were allegedly involved in clashes which forced the closure of the faculty," more..