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Sri Lanka U19 crush Namibia by 195 runs

Aug 13 (IC) Sri Lanka bounced back from the disappointment of losing their opening round clash to Bangladesh with a clinical showing against qualifier Namibia on Monday at Allan Border Field. A solid batting performance, with five batsmen passing 30 and two scoring half centuries, ensured that Sri Lanka produced a highly competitive score of 298/9. All-rounder Lahiru Madushanka, who scored 45 off 35 balls (1x4s, 1x6s), capped off a fine match with figures of 4/15 from six overs more..

'Do not use communalism for elections'

Aug 13 (LT) JVP MP Mr Sunil Handunetti appealed to all political parties and its leaders to abstain from using communalism at the elections. He made this appeal speaking at the scene where Mohideen Jumma mosque at Irunoruvi, Ulnochchi in Batticaloa had been burnt by someone on the 11th night. He added that the Govt is engaged in winning the election spreading differences among the communities which should be stopped and communal harmony should more..

Lankan gang targeted Jumeirah for thefts

Aug 13 (E24|7) Five Sri Lankans allegedly broke into a medical store in Jumeirah and stole three laptops, the Dubai Criminal Court heard. The accused, identified as OMB, 22, clerk, AMR, 30, office boy, MSF, 21, salesman, and MAM,25, store keeper, are also charged with destroying two safes. MRM, 33, is accused only of possessing stolen items. First Lieutenant Hamad Obaid testified that police received information about OMB seeking a buyer for laptops. Police trapped OMB and arrested him red-handed. more..

Appoint commission to probe attacks on prisoners - Sangaree asks President

Aug 13 (AD) The TULF today called on President Rajapaksa to appoint a commission of inquiry to look into alleged assaults on inmates of Mahara Prison by prison officers. Two prisoners out of 30 Tamil prisoners transferred from Vavuniya to Mahara following a hostage situation had succumbed to injuries. Ganesan Nimalaruban, a resident of Vavuniya, succumbed to his injuries on July 04 after being admitted to the Ragama Hospital while Mariyadas Nevil Dilrukshan, more..

Sri Lanka extends daily power cut as Chinese plant fails again

Aug 13 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's state-run power firm said on Monday it had extended nation-wide daily power cuts by a fortnight due to repeated technical problems at a Chinese-built power plant which has knocked out almost a fifth of the island's generating capacity. The extended power cuts come as Sri Lanka has lost almost 85 percent of its hydro power generation capacity due to a drought. Sri Lanka imposed power cuts in July for the more..

President sends Condolence to people of Iran

Aug 13 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has sent a condolence message to Iranian President Dr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on the twine earthquakes that struck Iran, killing several hundred people and causing much destruction. The President has said in his message that it was with great shock and profound sadness that he learnt of the two earthquakes of high magnitude which struck Tabriz and Ahar August 11, causing the loss of valuable lives, displacement of persons and more..

Fully equipped sports facilities will be set up throughout the country - President

Aug 13 (GDI) On Sturday President Rajapaksa said that fully equipped sports facilities will be set up in all areas of the country. He made these comments when he met a group of media personel from Kandy at President's House, in Kandy. Referring to the newly refurbished Bogambara Stadium, the President said that he would discuss with the Sports Miister on the possibility of providing it for school events at a concessionary rate. President Mahinda Rajapaksa said since more..

Electricity employees on strike amid power cut in Sri Lanka

Aug 13 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka's electricity employees resort to trade union action and public protest amid island wide power cuts due to continuous drought and breakdown of a coal power plant on Monday. Thousands of CEB employees took to the streets of capital Colombo and staged a public protest to voice their demands for pay hikes. The employees threatened to continue the trade union action that was launched on Friday, more..

Sri Lanka to tighten migrant laws to reduce asylum seekers

Aug 13 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka is planning to amend its migration laws to take stricter action against illegal asylum seekers after numbers topped 530 in July. Given the increasing numbers of people illegally attempting to migrate to Australia, an amendment to the Immigration and Emigration Act has already been sent to the Legal Draftsman, said Controller General Chulananda Perera. "There is a great need to upgrade the legal framework for illegal migrants and human smugglers. more..

Greece sends back 500 bags of desiccated coconut

Aug 13 (DM) As many as 500 bags of desiccated coconut that were exported to Greece by a well-known company had been returned after they were found to have been contaminated with poison. The consignment had been sent back to the island as soon as it had reached the Greek Port. It had been found that the consignment had been shipped abroad by two coconut mills in Wennapuwa. The mill owners had been requested to be more vigilant in future. more..

Summons issued on Bathiudeen

Aug 13 (CG) The Mannar Court has issued summons on Minister Rishad Bathiudeen to appear in court over allegations he had threatened a judge recently. The Minister has been ordered to appear in court on August 27th to respond to the allegations raised against him. Bathiudeen has been accused of threatening the Mannar judge last month during a protest by Muslim fishermen in the area. The fishermen were agitating against a court order issued by the judge more..

More new cultivable lands during Yala and Maha

Aug 13 (GDI) Minister S.M. Chandrasena said that 100,000 acres of new land will become cultivable during the Maha and Yala seasons in Vavuniya, Puttalam, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa districts, when the present programme desilting the tanks and reservoirs in the four districts are completed. The Minister said on a directive of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, 160 reservoirs, and 1,000 medium level tanks are being renovated in these districts along with the desiling. more..

Sri Lanka stocks down 0.16 pct

Aug 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka stocks closed down 0.16 percent Monday with market trading lacking momentum, brokers said. The All Share Price Index dropped 7.77 points to close at 4,846.45 down 0.16 percent while the Milanka Index of more liquid stocks gained 1.74 points to close at 4372.62 and the S&P index of large cap stocks lost 4.94 points to close at 2729.27. Monday's turnover was 163 million rupees. Dominant contributors to turnover were Sampath Bank with 23.7 million rupees, more..

Sri Lanka News Debrief - 13.08.2012

Drugs smuggling: Sri Lanka repatriates Pakistani prisoners

Aug 13 (PT) Twenty Pakistanis, who were found guilty of smuggling illegal drugs to Sri Lanka and were serving their life terms in jails there, have arrived Pakistan. These include two women. The prisoners will complete their terms in different jails in Pakistan. The convicts have been shifted to Pakistan under an agreement of transfer of prisoners between the two countries. Pakistan High Commission in Sri Lanka paid for their travelling expenses. more..

Sri Lanka bank credit eases in June: data

Aug 13 (LBO) Loans from Sri Lanka's banking system fell to 13.5 billion rupees in June 2012, from 41.8 billion a month earlier with state credit no longer pressuring the banking system, while private citizens' credit remained positive, official data showed. Total loans from commercial banks to private borrowers rose 19.0 billion rupees to 2,234.9 billion rupees in June up 31.6% from a year earlier, slowing from a 33.5% growth in May. Credit to the state including state enterprises fell 5.5 billion rupees 1,285.9 billion rupees. more..

'Tackling Kohli is a big part of Sri Lanka's T20 World Cup plans'

Aug 13 (PTI) Virat Kohli's meteoric rise in recent times has prompted the Sri Lankan cricket team to devise a game plan for the Indian batsman ahead of next month's T20 World Cup, according to opener Tillakaratne Dilshan. "We are not meeting them in the first round. If we have to meet India in the Super Eights or the semifinals then we have to plan against him," Dilshan told PTI. Dilshan, who is leading the Basnahira Cricket Dundee side in more..

Sixteen Service Entry candidates commissioned at NMA

Aug 13 (GDI) 16 Service Entry candidates belonging to Executive, Electrical, Engineering, Marine Engineering, Supply, Medical, Shipwright and Patrolman branches who joined the Naval & Maritime Academy on 05th October 2011 and underwent strenuous 39 weeks of hard training, had their commissioning parade at the Naval & Maritime Academy (NMA) main parade ground at Trincomalee in the morning on 11th August 2012. The Chief Guest, Director General Civil more..

IFTAR Celebrated at the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN

Aug 13 (GDI) The Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations hosted an IFTAR reception for the Sri Lankan Muslim Community in New York, last week. This was the second year in succession that the Mission has celebrated IFTAR, a tradition which was started in 2011. This event commenced with the “breaking of the fast”, with dates from the Middle East followed by Maghrib prayers and a traditional banquet with a Sri Lankan flavor. Addressing the gathering, Ambassador Palitha Kohona, more..

Swamy slams DMK chief for remarks on Indo-Sri Lankan relations

Aug 13 (PTI) Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy condemned DMK chief M Karunanidhi for his "outrageous" remarks against Indo-Sri Lanka relations at a pro-Eelam TESO meet. Swamy said Karunanidhi has expressed the view that Tamils are being subjected to "genocide in Sri Lanka because of Sinhalaisation". "This is ridiculous since both Sinhala and the Tamil people originally came from India more..

The King of Swaziland to land in Sri Lanka

Aug 13 (NF) The King of Swaziland Mswati III, is scheduled to arrive in Sri Lanka on today. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the main aim of this visit is to strengthen bilateral ties between the two nations. The King of Swaziland is scheduled to hold talks with President Mahinda Rajapaksa and several high-ranking officers of the government. The Ministry pointed out that a group of dignitaries including businessmen are due to accompany the king on his trip.

Import tax on big-onions and potatoes increased

Aug 13 (SLBC) Import tax on big-onions and potatoes has been amended with effect from midnight today. The President has taken this decision in order to give a justifiable price to the local farmers. Therefore, the import tax on one kilo of big-onions which was at 25 rupees has been increased up to 50 rupees. Furthermore, the import tax on one kilo of potatoes which was at 10 rupees has been increased up to 30 rupees. The local big onion and potato harvest is now being more..

Tamils speak out against ASIO security rulings

Aug 13 (ABC) Three Sri Lankan men who have been declared genuine refugees are fighting secret ASIO rulings preventing their release into the general community. STEVE CANNANE, PRESENTER: Three Sri Lankan men who've been declared genuine refugees are fighting secret ASIO rulings that mean they can't be released from immigration detention despite their refugee status. With no right to appeal, they've decided to more..

The ‘Miracle of Asia’ and Higher Education

Aug 14 (GV) Along with a number of others in the original email list, including the President of Sri Lanka and leading MPs, Groundviews was forwarded a compelling presentation by the University of Moratuwa Teachers Association on Sri Lanka’s higher education crisis. If this was produced by any NGO, the President and Government would no doubt have immediately and volubly dismissed, denied and decried the presentation as a foreign conspiracy. It is in fact produced by academics from within Sri Lanka’s more..

Child Abuse: A time for deconstruction and engagement

Aug 14 (GV) The politics of child abuse is no different from the politics of human rights, women’s rights etc, etc. I use the word politics in the sense of labels we use to divide people: to elevate the rights of our preferred set of human beings to a pedestal far above everything else, to isolate them and then demand that they be protected. This disproportionate and extremist approach to rights is due to an inability to see rights in perspective. The foundation for more..

'Winning the economic war, our aim'

Aug 14 (SO) Labour Minister Gamini Lokuge said people in the country remember the Govt's victory of defeating the 30-year-old war. President Mahinda Rajapaksa's next target is to win the economic war on terrorism. He said the Govt has already started many development projects in the country and people will reap the benefits in the near future. Minister Lokuge, a leading trade unionist predicted that there will more..

Neelan: Twice the victim of extremism

Aug 14 (CT) Dr. Neelan Tiruchelvam’s words, in an impassioned speech against the death penalty, inspired the brightly coloured peace mural at the Kynsey Road and Kynsey Terrace Junction in Colombo 08. Overcome with shock and grief at the brutal slaying of the erudite Tamil legislator on July 29, 1999, friends, family and well-wishers gathered at the site of his assassination and under the direction of veteran artist, Chandraguptha Thenuwara, helped to paint doves, flowers, more..

In “Cuckoo Land”, primary education to lost youth and remand prisons

Aug 14 (CT) Summing up the crisis that’s swelling within this “Cuckoo land” under common labels, could be easier done than quoting news headlines. Salaries, percentage allocations for education and University Don’s strike; the Z-score scramble, students, parents and university admissions; Ministers, Deputy Ministers, PC and PS Members in assaults, extortions, abductions, sexual abuses, rapes, murders and crimes; tender violations by Ministers; diesel and petrol hedging deals by more..

Taking big strides in tracking small communities

Aug 14 (ST) His foray not only into the wilds but also the towns and cities of Sri Lanka in search of vanished trails leading to near-extinct communities has brought him an unsought boon. As Nuwan Gankanda, 37, of Irida Lakbima accepted the ‘D.R. Wijewardene Award for Earning the Appreciation of Peers and Public’ at ‘The Journalism Awards for Excellence 2011’ organised by the Editors’ Guild of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka more..

Kandy health sector seems healthy

Aug 14 (NS) It is controversy time in the health sector in the hill capital-Kandy. Politicians have clashed with the medical sector. It was last week that the Central Province Health Minister. Sunil Amaratunga reportedly assaulted a doctor at the Kandy Teaching Hospital and abused a woman doctor. Police arrested the minister and took him before the arm of the law. Health staff at the main hospital in the hill capital operates amidst severe constraints. It has to cater to thousands of more..

Secret behind calls to remove Mullikulam Navy Camp

Aug 14 (NS) India’s comments, actions and gestures never happen without reason and become accentuated with their Sri Lankan mouthpiece the TNA ever willing to carry out anything and everything that India orders. Thus, the diplomatic tempos that are now being thrust on Sri Lanka are pressure points to clear Sri Lanka’s military presence along the coastal fronts thereby exposing Sri Lanka to India’s whims and desires. more..

Global giant Nestlé upbeat on Sri Lanka

Aug 14 (FT) The world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company, Nestlé said last week Sri Lanka is a high growth market with strong upside in tandem with improving socioeconomic development aided by the end-of-war benefit. “We are experiencing double digit growth in Sri Lanka and see very positive prospects going forward. Our commitment to Sri Lanka is underpinned by the roll out of Rs. 10 billion investment over a five-year period, of which more..

Those in glass houses don’t remove their clothes

Aug 14 (DBS) The Editors’ Guild and some other powerful associations of journalists have got hot under the collar over the statement of the new Secretary to the Media Ministry Charitha Herath that the govt wouldn’t be introducing the Right to Information Act in the interests of national security and other sensitive matters. The ire of the editors and others who have promptly issued a heated communiqué expressing regret over the Secretary’s statement itself betray their more..

General Kobbekaduwe drew respect and affection from civil population in conflict areas

Aug 14 (DBS) It is hard to imagine that 20 years have passed since General Denzil Kobbekaduwa, along with some of his senior commanders, fell victim to a buried explosive device in the Jaffna Peninsula. That fateful day was August 8, 1992. The incident shook the nation to its core and plummeted military morale to the lowest ever in nearly a decade of conflict. It seems like the other day that the shocking tragedy befell the nation. more..

Political families on the increase

Aug 14 (NS) The 13th Amendment to the Constitution was introduced to devolve power in the north and east and set up Provincial Councils for that purpose. Though people in other parts, other than the north and east, did not ask for these PCs they were thrust upon all nine provinces by the then govt. But these have now become almost an unbearable white elephant to the country where family members, kith and kin of certain politicians seem to be an odyssey at the expense of the public. more..

Editorial: Polls Chief's uphill task

Aug 14 (Island) It was once claimed that the Soviet Union did as the Community Party said and the party did as Lenin said. Similarly, this country does as the UPFA says and the ruling coalition does as President Mahinda Rajapaksa says. Therefore, Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya's argument that airtime given to the President should be considered media coverage for the UPFA is tenable. However, the question is where to draw the line when it comes to the President's more..

JAICA funding for Warakapola hospital

Aug 14 (DN) Measures have been taken to develop the Warakapola Base hospital from the funds of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), a spokesman for the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council said.JAICA will provide Rs 708 million for this. According to Hospital Director Dr Upul Wijenayake, the funds will be provided in the form of a concessionary loan. Around 15,000 patients were provided with medical treatment while around 168,000 patients visited the more..

Govt.’s ‘perceived’ stance strengthening market offenders

Aug 14 (Island) The capital market watchdog the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC) has fast tracked investigations into market manipulation and is expected to present the Parliamentary Committee of Public Enterprises (COPE) a detailed report on its outcome before the end of this month. While some market stakeholders blame the SEC for over regulating the market with various directives that are stymieing more..

Nazir helps Nagenahira to second win

Aug 14 (CI) A blistering 85-run opening stand between Imran Nazir and Ahmed Shehzad and a cool finish from Angelo Mathews trumped perhaps the innings of the tournament so far, from Thisara Perera, as Nagenahira Nagas overhauled Kandurata Warriors' 159 for 7 in the final over. Nazir blasted five sixes and four fours in his half-century, and left his side needing just 75 from 68 at his dismissal - a task Mathews ensured never got out of hand. Fleet of foot was the key to Nazir's success, as he routinely skipped down the track to change more..

Credit growth falling significantly

Aug 14 (Island) The painful adjustments to contain a balance of payments crisis have brought about further improvements with banking sector credit growth falling significantly along with Central Bank loans to the govt, latest data released by the Monetary Authority showed. With interest rates rising, since end December 2011 private sector credit from the banking sector grew 12 percent as at end June 2012, well below the Central Bank imposed limit of 18 percent, to Rs. 2 trillion, up 34.6 percent from a year earlier. more..