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Another ‘Justice Wanasundera’ for ‘Apex Court’

Aug 8 (NS) The name ‘Wanasundera’ is one that has made its mark in the folds of Sri Lanka’s legal system. A former Attorney General and one time Acting Chief Justice, Justice Rajah Sirimevan Wanasundera PC who now lives in restful retirement, was a legal luminary known for his steadfastness in upholding judicial independence and being fearless in his adjudications; the most renowned, one may say, would be the more..

The murder of a nobody

Aug 8 (NS) “Where is it written that you can be beaten to death? Which article is it written thus? I am not afraid of anyone. I don’t care who you are. Come and shoot me. I am not afraid. People need justice and the truth. The people who beat my son up are animals. My heart burns. Those who killed my son will suffer the same fate. I didn’t teach my son to steal or kill. My son’s father worked hard to raise my son. Nothing good will come to them. Shoot me, I am not afraid. more..

'I am a pilgrim in progress'

Aug 8 (DM) Q: A menacing media campaign, burning of effigies and regular calls for protests against – you seem to have become the punching bag of a section of Indian politicians and media. Why this escalation of violence against a single Sri Lankan minister? A: That’s a question that you should ask them. Reality is there for everybody to see and even my Indian friends are saying this is quite unprecedented. more..

Militant Buddhism is a recent phenomenon and was not behind the civil war

Aug 8 (DBS) It’s deeply disturbing that a magazine such as Foreign Affairs would stoop to publish such an article as this. It is more of a diatribe than a well balanced article that one expects from a magazine such as Foreign Affairs and it is shocking that the publishers would allow a writer to drag the magazine in the mud. Author has taken a one sided view of what is happening in Sri Lanka and has not bothered to look at the historical perspective more..

Genesis vs. Nemesis: Sri Lanka’s supernatural history

Aug 8 (DBS) First there is the question of belief and then belief itself. It was first the Eleatic Parmenides, who in an attempt to understand the phenomena of change by refuting interpretations of Heraclitean and Milesian thinkers, decried that we ‘confuse appearance with reality’. Zeno talked about the senses, deluding us from the truth by creating the sensation of an illusion; an illusion of fact, an illusion of reality. He proved to himself by dropping a more..

LNG, a timely solution for power crisis

Aug 8 (SO) The timely solution to the country's power crisis lies in Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) from fuel and Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG), said former Laboratory and Technical Head of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) Oil refinery and former Acting Chairman of CPC S.K. Cyril Suduwella. The domestic energy supply is based on three primary sources - hydro electricity, petroleum and biomass. In 2010, Sri Lanka used more..

An action plan that is basically dishonest

Aug 8 (CT) One cannot fail to be amazed at the considerable ingenuity if not wild imagination with which the govt’s National Plan of Action to implement the recommendations of the LLRC has been drafted. Some responses invoke chuckles of glee whilst other promises invoke far more heated reactions given the sheer chutzpah with which they have been made. For example, the unfortunate inhabitants of this blessed land would be vastly relieved to learn that this administration more..

Can we return Sri Lanka to democratic govt?

Aug 8 (CT) The danger of ‘Regime change’ seems to be the constant lament of those seeking to create the ‘Miracle of Asia.’ They drag out the term whenever there appears to be anything resembling critical mass building against the most corrupt government in the history of modern Sri Lanka. They apply to the term the most pejorative hue that one can imagine. The corruption and violence has soaked down to the bone of the Sri Lankan body politic. On the other side of more..

'Abuse of girl child: Criminals are roaming free'

Aug 8 (DM) Q: At your party convention last week MP Ven. Atureliye Ratana Thera came hard on the govt’s failure to run a strong campaign to counter child abuse. The JHU is very much part of the govt and does that mean part of the blame should go to the party as well? A: I would have preferred if you called us a ‘constituent party’ rather than an entity that is ‘very much part of govt’ because ours is an ally that joined the govt more..

Small arms and ammunitions imports into Sri Lanka from 1992-2010: A latent hypocrisy?

Aug 8 (GV) Google has just released an interesting visualisation of the global small arms and ammunitions trade (works best in Google Chrome). For those with older browsers, a screencast of the visualisation can be viewed as an HD video below. When disaggregated by country, Sri Lanka’s small arms and ammunitions imports since ’92 to 2010 are very interesting to study through this visualisation, which gives details of the country of origin as well as the sum spent on more..

The end of the music?

Aug 8 (GV) At a time of general cultural degeneration and falling standards, one bright spot in our firmament is the classical music scene, both Western and eastern. Due to the presence of some very good teachers all over the island, bright new talents in piano, violin, guitar, flute, drums, tabla and other instruments are emerging. Evidence of this emerging talent is the annual Sri Lanka Festival of Music, Dance and Speech held in Colombo each year, organised by more..

'Niluka has more years of badminton left'

Aug 8 (Island) Olympian Niluka Karunaratne’s Korean coach Young Man Kim opined that the champion Sri Lankan has several years of badminton ahead of him and he should play in competitive World Series tournaments to improve his rankings. Kim said that Niluka, who beat world No.8 Kenichi Tago of Japan at London Olympics, has the potential to reach another Olympics. He also said that he was disappointed that Niluka did not more..

The slog and the deft touch

Aug 8 (CI) Ashok Dinda was almost about to start in his run up to bowl the second delivery of the 18th over when he asked MS Dhoni to move fine leg into the circle. Consequently, Virat Kohli jogged back from mid-off to long-off. Dinda hurled it in full to Dinesh Chandimal who mistimed a heave for Kohli to move a few paces to his right and take the catch. Dinda punched the air, delighted his move had paid off. Twenty20 reduces even an opener, and a pretty good one, into a slogger. more..

Editorial: Schools and congestion

Aug 8 (Island) School vacations used to bring joy only to children in the past. But, today, there are millions of adults who jump for joy when school holidays begin. They are the people who have to travel to Colombo every morning. Roads are less congested and traffic moves much faster than usual these days. There are about 25 big schools within the Colombo municipal limits and why the streets get chock-a-block when they are in session is not difficult to understand. more..

Connections | August 06, 2012

India head home a happy bunch whilst SLPL tries to get off the mark

Aug 8 (Island) Indian batsmen enjoyed the true pitches. Sri Lanka’s weak bowling attack, the home team’s inconsistent batting, injuries to Nuwan Kulasekara and Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene’s day off and, last but not the least, the ‘brilliance’ of the local umpires, who denied Sri Lanka the prize scalps of Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina in the crunch encounter during the fourth ODI. Manoj Tiwary’s caught behind in the dead rubber at Pallekele also comes to mind. more..

Locals blinded as net foreign inflow tops Rs. 26 b

Aug 8 (FT) The Colombo Bourse’s silver lining – net foreign inflow – continues to strengthen, with the year-to-date figure having now topped the Rs. 26 billion mark. The first two days of the fresh week had seen a net inflow of over Rs. 100 million each in addition to marking the 12th straight session of such inflows. Independent analysts remain dismayed by the lack of local investor interest when foreigners continue to be bullish, seizing attractive buying opportunities. more..

UNP MP files FR case against CB’s junk Greek bond investment

Aug 8 (FT) UNP MP Sujeewa Senasinghe yesterday filed a Fundamental Rights case against the Central Bank Governor at the Supreme Court challenging the prudence of Greek bond investments. He said, “I am seeking an interim injunction for them (the Central Bank) not to invest any more money on the Greece financial market and also to say that they do not have the official capacity to take this decision.” Senasinghe also pointed out more..

SEC’s independence from Executive comes up at COPE meeting

Aug 8 (FT) Independence from the Executive for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and greater powers as well as regulation were among issues which had surfaced at yesterday’s meeting between the capital market regulator and the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) as exclusively reported by the Daily FT. The need for a hands-off approach by the Executive (the President who incidentally by virtue of being more..

BOC gets US$ 190mn facility

Aug 8 (Island) State banking giant Bank of Ceylon (BOC) yesterday said it signed an agreement for a syndicated loan facility of US$ 190 million. Mashreqbank PSC Dubai acted as the Co-ordinator, Mandated Lead Arranger (MLA) and Bookrunner along with Commercial Bank of Qatar, Doha Bank and Indian Bank, Singapore Branch (each as MLA and Bookrunner) and Bank Muscat (as MLA). "A total of 13 banks participated in the oversubscribed syndicated deal. This was originally more..

COPE boss wants to destroy share market Mafia

Aug 8 (Island) COPE Chairman D.E.W. Gunasekara urged the authorities to strengthen the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in order to take down the influential group of investors who were operating a ‘mafia’ in the Colombo Stock Exchange. The Chairman and top officials of the SEC were summoned before COPE yesterday where the committee grilled them on recent developments in the capital market and more..

Kingsley, cross star in India-Sri Lankan Hollywood flick

Aug 8 (NIP) Chandran Rutnam, a veteran Sri Lankan Tamil movie director, and B S Radha Krishnan, a Chennai-based producer, have collaborated to make a Hollywood film starring Ben Kingsley and Ben Cross which is to be released in Los Angeles next month. Rutnam said that the film entitled A Common Man was shown to critics and distributors in Hollywood on July 11 and that it had secured a fantastic reception. Kirk D’Amico, CEO of Myriad Pictures, which is distributing more..

CPC’s new pumps to cost Rs.150Mn.

Aug 8 (Island) While the Petroleum Resources Minister Susil Premajayanth and Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) officials were contradicting each other over "defective" pumps,a new stock was to be imported at a cost of over Rs.150 million the main Opposition UNP said yesterday. The loss caused due to the old pumps was around Rs.100 million. But the Minister maintained that Vital, a Singapore Company had supplied good petrol and blamed the state of the CPC’s pumps for more..

Mob led by Buddhist priest forcefully takes away Pillaiyar statue from Hindu temple

Aug 8 (DBS) In a peculiarly aggressive display of “Saffron Terrorism” a mob led by a Buddhist Priest has deployed force and taken away a statue of the Elephant faced deity known as Pillaiyar in Tamil and Gana Deiyo in Sinhala from a Hindu temple in Panamai on the Eastern coastal district of Amparai. In a flagrant violation of law and order and the freedom of worship, an ancient statue of more..

Call to confer dual citizenship

Aug 8 (Hindu) A fact-finding committee of human rights organisations which studied the conditions in four refugee camps in Cuddalore and Villupuram districts has called for improving basic amenities. G. Sugumaran, secretary of the Federation for People’s Rights-Puducherry, and A. Marx of the People’s Union for Human Rights, told presspersons here on Tuesday that the team studied the situation in the camps at Kullanchavadi, Kurinjipadi, Vriddhachalam in Cuddalore district more..

Air hostess nabbed with heroin remanded

Aug 8 (Island) One of the two Srilankan Airline air hostesses, who were produced before Hulftsdorp Magistrate Court yesterday, charged with the alleged possession of heroin, was remanded till August 21. The other was released on bail. The air hostess who was remanded was the one who had 26 packets of heroin in her possession and had been an addict for about one year. He said that the Wellawatte police had monitored the suspects’ suspicious black car that arrived at a more..

Tamil refugees opting to go back find it chilling

Aug 8 (Hindu) Tamil refugees who opt to go to Sri Lanka face a tricky situation. If they find unfavourable conditions on the island nation and want to return, they will have to forfeit their refugee status. As such on their re-entry, they will not be allowed to live with their families in refugee camps. They will also have to forego government benefits meant for refugees. Therefore, the future of the refugees who have come back from more..

Infant milk food suppliers warned against promoting products over breast feeding

Aug 8 (Island) Professor Narada Warnasuriya Monday warned infant milk food suppliers that in accordance with the Sri Lanka Code for the Promotion, Protection and Support of Breast Feeding and Marketing of the Designated Products (Amended Code – 2002), no company or person should advertise or promote any complementary food as being appropriate for any infant under the age of six months as there was no substitute for breast milk. Any complementary food more..

Kegalle by road development in full swing

Aug 8 (DN) A project to develop by roads in the Kegalle Urban Council area was launched at a cost of Rs 160 million. Main by roads have already been rehabilitated under this project. Under the project, the Bandaranaike Road is being widened and carpeted and almost 90% of the work has been completed. Bandaranaike road, which was only four metres wide has been further widened to eight metres to transform it as a two lane road. This road is often used as an alternative road by more..

'Maximum relief for drought-hit farmers'

Aug 8 (DN) The govt will provide the maximum possible relief for the farmers affected by the drought, SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena said. He said that the Cabinet would today decide on the compensation for the drought-hit cultivated lands. The minister said the govt has decided to distribute paddy seeds and fertilizer free to farmers affected by the drought, defer the recovery of interests on their bank loans more..

'Jaffna University set up despite TNA's objections'

Aug 8 (DN) When Professor Thurairajah proposed to set up the University of Jaffna in 1974, the present leaders of the TNA objected to this proposal on the grounds that the venue selected was not suitable for a university. However, the govt, disregarding the objections, went ahead with the plan which resulted in the emergence of a large number of intellectuals useful to the country, said Minister Douglas Devananda. He said so at a ceremony to more..

Two UNP MPs to break ranks shortly

Aug 8 (Island) Speculation is rife in political circles that two UNP MPs will sit in parliament as independent members. Well informed sources said that the two members would make special statements in Parliament before breaking ranks. A senior UNP MP said on the condition of anonymity that two rebel legislators had initially planned to join the ruling coalition, though they subsequently were asked by the UPFA to function as independent members for sometime. more..

Some 20,000 applications rejected

Aug 8 (CT) Nearly 20,000 applications for postal voting at the upcoming provincial council elections have been rejected, additional Election Commissioner, R.M.A.L Ratnayake said. Some 120,080 postal voting applications were submitted by the State sector employees, of which only 100,788 applications were accepted. The Election Secretariat has rejected 19,292 applications. The distribution of polling cards for postal voting more..

Unruly spectators spoil fun for Indian fans

Aug 8 (Hindu) For the second time in three matches, some Sri Lankan spectators went after Indian fans waving flags, mouthed obscenities and generally gave Indian supporters a hard time during the T20 match. A few Indian spectators said that some Sri Lankan supporters were throwing beer cans, water bottles, and glasses at them. Some of these Sri Lankan supporters were in the Ministers’ box, and were throwing things, and mouthing obscenities. “We were taken aback with the comments more..

Drunk driver sends diesel bowser down slope

Aug 8 (Island) A fuel bowser carrying 35,000 litres of diesel ran off the road and fell about 15 feet down a slope near the police barracks at Diyagala early yesterday. The driver of the bowser had been drunk when the accident occurred in the Ginigathena police area, along the Colombo-Hatton road, at 1.25 a.m. He was arrested by the Ginigathena police. SP Rohana said that the tank had got detached from the truck before it toppled and started leaking from several places. more..

Now, CPC claims diesel clean as Harry J comes under AG’s probe

Aug 8 (Island) The ongoing inquiry into the distribution of a stock of substandard diesel supplied by Vitol Group of Companies has taken an unexpected turn with the Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminals Limited (CPSTL) admitting that the cargo in question had been cleared by its inspectors at Kolonnawa. Maj. Gen. M.R.W. de Zoysa (retd), Chairman of CPSTL acknowledged that the stock had been tested again after more..

Transport Minister attempts to plug financial leaks in SLTB

Aug 8 (Island) In a bid to improve Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) management, with effect from this month, all SLTB regional managers of the nine regions will be vested power to effectively manage 103 depots. The regional managers will be responsible for earning revenue to pay respective depot employees’ salaries, for spare parts and maintenance purposes. The Treasury will deposit Rs. 10,110 into the People’s Bank account of each SLTB employee commencing this month. more..

Politico’s brother to be arrested over abduction and torture drama

Aug 8 (Island) The Colombo Crimes Division has rounded up an organized gang that abducted an employee of a big garage in Colombo and tortured him for two days, as the owner of the establishment had suspected the man of stealing his wife’s gold necklace worth Rs 500,000. Unable to get any information from the victim, who had been tortured in a top floor room of a four-storey building by his abductors, they had finally admitted him to the Accident Service of the more..

Not all massage parlours bad

Aug 8 (LB) Today there are many Ayurvedic treatment clinics that have sprung up all over the country, publicising the Pancha Karma method of treatment, but now a question has arisen whether these centres truly provide Ayurvedhic treatment or whether they are centres engaging sex workers to provide an elicit service. If one were to look beyond the facxade and enquire in to the activities of such places it would reveal that most are engaged in providing more than an more..

Post war: The cries of the desperate and destitute

Aug 8 (SL) Mathusha Sivajalingham, a 36-year-old mother of two boys (aged 5 and 8), is a victim of the three decade long war. The conflict saw her husband killed, her shop and home destroyed and for two years she and her children lived in several different IDP camps. In the face of abject poverty and a bleak future, Sivajalingham took her children and attempted to migrate to Australia aboard one of the growing number more..