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India-Sri Lanka CEO's Forum to meet on Aug 4

Aug 2 (PTI) India-Sri Lanka CEO's Forum will meet on August 4 to discuss ways to enhance trade and investments between the countries, industry body Ficci said today. Bharti Airtel Chairman & Managing Director Sunil Bharti Mittal will be the Co-Chair from the Indian side, while Samson International Ltd Executive Director Kulathunga Rajpaksa has been appointed to Co-Chair from Sri Lanka. The forum has been set up to develop a roadmap for increased cooperation and more..

Can't wait for SLPL to start: Jayasuriya

Aug 2 (NDTV) Sanath Jayasuriya is 43 and retired from international cricket, but far from finished with playing the game competitively. A couple of months back, he played in the Bangladesh Premier League. Now he is ready for another innings, at the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League beginning on August 11. Jayasuriya, also a Member of Parliament from Matara, was to have played under Kumar Sangakkara for Kandurata Warriors, but with Sangakkara almost certain to miss the tournament due to a broken finger, more..

Sri Lanka Debrief News 02.08. 2012

Mace won’t be allowed into the CMC chambers: Dy. Mayor

Aug 2 (DM) The mace that was forcibly removed from the Colombo Municipal Council by some councillors would not be allowed into the Council if returned, Deputy Mayor Titus Perera said today. He said a complaint was lodged at the Cinnamon Gardens Police about the removal of the mace and added that it would only be allowed into the Council if a court order was issued to that effect. “At the committee meeting to be held on the August 30, a motion will be filed to have the more..

Sri Lanka financial intelligence unit in deal with US and Russia

Aug 2 (LBO) The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Sri Lanka's Central Bank has signed a MOU with FIUs of Mongolia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and the United States, the bank releasing a statement said. Under the MOU the countries will share financial information to facilitate the investigation and prosecution of people suspected of money laundering and terrorist financing, it said. The central bank said money launderers and terrorist financiers are most often more..

Sri Lanka calls for elimination of nuclear weapons

Aug 2 (Xinhua) The govt on Thursday called for the elimination of nuclear weapons from national arsenals, saying the continued existence of nuclear weapons and of their possible use or threat of use poses an overarching threat to humanity. The External Affairs Ministry quoted Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha as saying that there is an urgent need to reach an early more..

India minimise Malinga threat, again

Aug 2 (CI) Records show that no team plays Lasith Malinga better than India do. In 27 ODIs spread over eight years against India, Malinga averages nearly 43 for his 31 wickets, at an economy-rate of almost six an over. The trend has continued in this series, in which Malinga's five wickets in four games have cost 44 runs each and he has conceded 6.19 runs an over. Even in the third game, when he removed MS Dhoni and Rohit Sharma off successive deliveries, Malinga went for 60 in his ten overs. more..

Shortage of uniforms for umpires in Sri Lanka

Aug 2 (IC) Umpires in Sri Lanka have been requested to return their uniforms at the end of the ongoing series against India or face a fine. However, the ICC said in a statement recently that it had provided the requested number of uniforms to cricket authorities on the island. Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) have requested the six officials serving as fourth umpires to return their uniforms before August 12 to avoid facing a fine of US$ 38 more..

Use votes to defeat UPFA

Aug 2 (CT) TNA Leader, R. Sampanthan called on the Tamils in the Eastern Province to use their votes to defeat the UPFA in the upcoming PC election. He was addressing an election rally in Trincomalee in support of the TNA candidates in the district. TNA Leader in his address said, “The UPFA and its cronies are all out to grab the votes of the Tamil speaking people in the Eastern Province by giving false promises. more..

The visiting British parliamentary delegation met the president

Aug 2 (SLBC) The visiting British parliamentary delegation met President Mahinda Rajapakse this morning at the President’s house in Kandy. They held talks with the President on promoting business and investment opportunities between the two countries. Britain has given technical support to erect flyover bridges in Sri Lanka. At this discussion the president informed the British Parliamentarian on the current opportunities for investment in Sri Lanka. more..

‘Substandard’ committee to look into ‘substandard’ diesel - Gemunu

Aug 2 (AD) President of the Lanka Private Bus Operators Association (LPBOA), Gemunu Wijerathne stated that he is not satisfied with the committee created to look into the substandard diesel issue. An independent committee for inspection should be created, he stated. Gemunu also said at the press conference that investigations made by the representatives from the oil cooperation itself cannot be trusted at all. He also mentioned that the diesel being sold now more..

Duminda Silva in Sri Lanka?

Aug 2 (CG) UPFA MP Duminda Silva has reportedly returned to Sri Lanka, police intelligence sources told the Colombo Gazette today. However these reports could not be independently verified from the government or any member of Silva’s family. Silva was receiving treatment in Singapore since last year after sustaining serious head injuries in the Mulleriyawa shooting incident. Presidential Advisor Bharatha Lakshman Premachandra was killed in more..

GCE A’L “Refined” results confusion worse confounded

Aug 3 (LB) The re-calculated marks of the now proverbial GCE A’L 2011 has left many quarters perturbed and utterly dismayed. Disparities of Z Scores and District Ranks between the “annulled result” and the freshly “re-calculated one” – in all three student tiers and in all streams have stirred another lap of agony; especially for those who initially were securely placed with hopes of university entrance, and so forth. The dissent and frustration which filled the online forums more..

Progressives, Nationalism and the ‘Global Establishment’

Aug 3 (LB) I had to think twice before I started writing this; because, I was not sure, whether it is proper for a humble columnist like me to confront the Editor in chief of this paper. However I know Rajpal is a democratic progressive. I have been writing this column, for nearly a decade, most of the time attacking the establishment, and Rajpal without a murmur, has allowed all that to come out. Having considered that, I thought it is my duty to take up this issue raised in more..

Is the media society's bane or gain?

Aug 3 (SO) Ven. Prof. Bellanwila Wimalaratana Anunayake Thera, Chancellor of Sri Jayawardenapura University disputed that religion has failed in humanizing society, arguing that a whole host of factors were responsible for the erosion of moral ethics witnessed today among the people. Apparent display of lawlessness by state officials and the reckless behaviour of the media was cited as principal reasons for the present state of affairs, more..

Pathetic plight of returning Mannar Muslim refugees

Aug 3 (CT) Muslim settlements in Mannar dates back to more than one thousand years. In her book “The Muslims of Sri Lanka” eminent historian Dr Lorna Dewaraja explained that by 9th century Muslim settlements were established in the coastal areas including Mannar. Muslims in and around Mannar area were descendants of early Arab traders who came for trade. They settled down and integrated well with the local people and continued their life in peace and harmony as more..

A policy and structural change in education for a better tomorrow

Aug 3 (CT) This article is a summary of the key points delivered at the public seminar on the theme “National Education Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”, conducted by the University of Moratuwa Teachers’ Association (UMTA) at S De S Jayasinghe Hall, Dehiwala on 18th July 2012. Every ‘Nation’s Dream’ is to achieve the status of a ‘Great Nation’ that can stand on its own. In the quest for a great nation, a sustainable education system is indispensable. more..

Tourists flock to 'Little Rome'

Aug 3 (SO) Sri Lanka is a favourite destination for tourists the world over. They love the amazing diversity of scenery, sun-bronzed beaches, sanctuaries for wildlife in tropical jungles and the hill country tea plantations, literally within hours of each other. Although there has been an ebb in the trend of tourist flows for nearly 30 years, until terrorism was wiped out in May 2009, a 50 percent leap was recorded in 2010 with over 600,000 more..

Tamil Civil Society memo to the TNA

Aug 3 (GV) Tamils have consistently made it clear that a unitary constitution and a provincial council system within the confines of a unitary constitution are incapable of fulfilling their political aspirations. In this regard it is notable that Tamil political parties with a Tamil Nationalist dispensation had chosen to boycott the two provincial council elections that took place in our homeland in the past (1989 and 2008). There can be no doubt that a Tamil political party with a Tamil Nationalist dispensation more..

The struggle to go home in post war Sri Lanka: The story of Mullikulam

Aug 3 (GV) In 2011, a young Advanced Level student from Mullikulam in the district of Mannar, living as an IDP in a camp in Thalvupadu, Mannar, shared with me an assignment she had done about her village and effects of displacement. She proudly described the richness of her hometown in terms of natural resources, culture and traditions. But soon, her mood turned to one of despair as she asked me and a priest who was accompanying me, more..

A silent revolution? ‘Free Education’ and Sri Lankan women

Aug 3 (Island) It is no exaggeration to say that one of the social groups that has most benefited from the revolutionary education reforms implemented starting 1947 [which most of us know as either Free Education or Kannangara Reforms] is Women. In 1946, when the overall literacy rate for the country was 57.8%, only 43.8% of the female population was literate as opposed to 70.1% of the male population (Panditaratne and Selvanayagam, 1973). more..

Sri Lanka is like a beautiful princess for whom two princes are competing for

Aug 3 (DBS) “How do you analyze Sri Lanka’s growing relationship with China disturbing neighbouring India?” I was posed with the above question or a question similar to that by Mano Tittawella. I was a panelist at a discussion of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit organized by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and Tittawella was the moderator. I explained that China and India are emerging superpower neighbours and border-sharing neighbours would be superpowers after 500 years. more..

Sri Lanka’s fragile gains in the balance

Aug 3 (Diplomat) In May 2009, the civil war in Sri Lanka drew to a close. It had been a sanguinary conflict claiming anywhere between 80,000 and 100,000 lives. Not surprisingly, there was a palpable sense of relief amongst the majority Sinhala population. Even the Tamil population, many of whom were not active supporters of the LTTE, had reasons to celebrate. They looked forward to no longer facing the routine suspicion, periodic harassment, and occasional searches of their homes. more..

Pada Yathra- a journey of joyous worship

Aug 3 (CT) 4 June 2004 (16): In the morning, the pilgrims progressed to Vavuniya and received a warm welcome at the Vavuniya Amman Temple. The temple is managed by two Swami Ammas who are responsible for an orphanage. The children, under the loving, caring tutelage of the Swamis blossom into beautiful human beings. They prepared the food with love and affection and served in a caring manner. The meal was followed by cultural events. more..

Will costly projects in Hambantota District be worth the investment?

Aug 3 (DBS) It’s hard to know when to take official statements seriously. The government isn’t known for taking the quiet, cautious approach. Indeed, its spokesmen very often make obviously false claims, such as that Mervyn hasn’t done anything wrong or that no civilians were killed during the war. They seem to think the public are idiots. When it comes to informing people about their plans, they are equally blasé about the difference between fact and fiction. We can never be sure what to believe. more..

Editorial: Olympics - Why this hullabaloo?

Aug 3 (Island) Questions are being raised in some quarters about the composition of Sri Lanka's Olympic contingent in London. It consists of seven competitors and thirty officials, we are told. The govt has drawn heavy flak for the non-inclusion in the contingent of shuttler Niluka's personal coach, who could have encouraged and guided the up-and-coming player during his encounters with seasoned players. However, we consider such criticism unfair, though we usually have no civil word to say about the ruling party politicians and their lackeys. more..

'Political capture of SEC not the answer to ills of CSE'

Ayg 3 (FT) UNP MP Dr. Harsha De Silva claimed yesterday that political capture of the capital market regulator SEC wasn’t the answer to the ills of the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE). In response to FT’s lead story, which featured Finance Ministry Dr. P.B. Jayasundera’s comments following his meeting with capital market stakeholders, the UN MP said the Colombo Bourse would only move forward in a sustainable manner if more..

Samarakoon feels absence of coach

Aug 3 (Island) Sri Lankan shooter Mangala Samarakoon said that he feels the absence of his coach, greatly, on the eve of his pet event, the men’s 50 metre rifle prone event at the 2012 London Olympics. The Sri Lanka Army shooter said that he is likely to be the only shooter not to have been trained under a coach during the last few days in London, when he takes aim at the Royal Artillery Barracks, here in London today. "I have trained for three days. I am better prepared for this event than the (10 metre) air rifle event. more..

'UNP defections: Canard by Govt., rebels'

Aug 3 (Island) The govt, aided by some disgruntled UNPers, was spreading a canard that more UNP MPs would be joining the UPFA, since three provincial council elections were due to be held shortly, the UNP said. Gayantha Kaurnathillake MP, said that the UNP, just like all political parties, had its internal differences, but none of its MPs would help to prop up the Rajapaksa regime which has become unpopular. The govt, having failed to fulfill its pledges even three years after the war had ended, was trying to demoralize the UNP rank more..

LPBOA urges authorities to provide super diesel

Aug 3 (DN) Lanka Private Bus Owners Association (LPBOA) President Gemunu Wijeratne yesterday urged the authorities to provide super diesel at normal prices to private bus operators because considerable number of private buses suffered permanent and temporary damage due to inferior quality diesel presently available in the market. He said about 700 buses had been partially and around 700 buses permanently damaged due to the use of substandard diesel. more..

Watch out for illegal use of public property during elections

Aug 3 (FT) Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) has called on all political parties and the public to be vigilant about the malpractices relating to the use of public property during the upcoming Provincial Council elections. Several surveys conducted by TISL during previous elections in Sri Lanka revealed the use of public property for election work blatantly violating election law as stipulated in the Constitution. Public property is defined as any movable or more..

Right to Information Act: Media organizations attack Herath

Aug 3 (Island) Apropos our front-page story captioned "Govt. won’t introduce ‘Right to Information Act’ at the expense of national security", based on remarks made by Media Secretary Charitha Herath at a recent workshop for journalists from SAARC countries, Newspaper Society of Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka Working Journalists Association, the editors’ guild of Sri Lanka and Free Media Movement issued the following statement through the Sri Lanka Press Institute: "We refer to more..

‘Unflagging support for the farmer’

Aug 3 (DN) The UPFA will record a landslide victory at the forthcoming Provincial Council elections since the govt has ushered unprecedented development in agriculture. The vast development in agriculture related activities will help the farmer community which in turn will develop the country, SLFP General Secretary and Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said. He said the govt under President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s leadership has almost completed more..

Kerawalapitiya at full capacity

Aug 3 (DN) The Kerawalapitiya Yugadanavi power station is functioning at full capacity of 300MW from yesterday morning, the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) said. The power added to the National Grid from the Kerawalapitiya dual power plant dropped following a technical error and 200 MW was restored last Friday. The remaining 100 MW has been added to the National Grid from yesterday. The CEB also stated that hydro power generation has once again dropped to 12.8 percent due to the extended dry weather in catchment areas. more..

Opposition TU’s want EPF investments on CSE halted

Aug 3 (Island) Opposition affiliated trade unions yesterday resolved to write to President Mahinda Rajapaksa requesting him to ensure that Employees Provident Fund (EPF) monies were not squandered by the risky investments that had been made on the Colombo Stock Exchange. Representatives of the Unions, who met at the New Town Hall, were of the view that the EPF should channel its funds into govt guaranteed securities since its recent Stock Market foray had resulted in huge losses. more..

UPFA readies no-faith motion against Colombo Mayor

Aug 3 (Island) A no-confidence motion containing 17 charges against Mayor of Colombo A.J.M. Muzammil is to be presented to the Chief Minister of the Western Provincial Council Prasanna Ranatunga in mid August by the UPFA Group in the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC). UPFA sources told The Island that they would request the Chief Minister to probe charges levelled against Mayor Muzammil and to suspend him if found guilty. Contempt of Court proceeding more..

Those with vested interests blowing things out of proportion - President

Aug 3 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday said the government was able to stop killings that were the order of the day in the past, with the eradication of terrorism. President Rajapaksa said certain elements by taking undue advantage of certain incidents were trying to create an opinion that a crime wave was prevalent in the country. President Rajapaksa said certain elements with vested interests were talking of drugs, armed groups and underworld elements at a time when more..

Stop shedding crocodile tears, Maithripala tells Ranil

Aug 3 (DN) The SLFP challenged Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe to point out any positive changes, if there were any, made to develop agriculture during his regime as the Prime Minister or during the period of the UNP govt, in which he was a minister, without shedding crocodile tears for the farmer community. Minister Maithripala Sirisena said the UNP and the JVP which worked for the downfall of agriculture and the farmer community, were shedding crocodile tears today. more..

FUTA adopts new strategy to secure pay hike

Aug 3 (Island) The Federation of University Teachers’ Association (FUTA) yesterday separated its ongoing strike to win a pay hike from the overall push for an agreement with the govt on the allocation of 6 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for education. FUTA Chief Dr. Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri asserted that even if an agreement could be reached on salary and related issues, their battle for enhanced allocation for the education sector would continue. more..

Buddhists Behaving Badly

Aug 3 (FA) In Sri Lanka last September, a Sinhalese mob led by some 100 Buddhist monks demolished a Muslim shrine in the ancient city of Anuradhapura. As the crowd waved Buddhist colors, gold and red, a monk set a green Muslim flag on fire. The monks claimed that the shrine was on land that had been given to the Sinhalese 2,000 years ago -- an allusion to their proprietary right over the entire island nation, as inscribed in ancient religious texts. The Anuradhapura attack was not the only recent incident of Buddhists behaving badly in more..