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Intimidation and violence are becoming a way of life

Dec 22 (Island) Tinashe Severa is a relatively young man who at an early age became one of Zimbabwe’s best known and prolific writers and poets. He wrote this poem during his student days while the early revolutionary and liberal idealism of President Mugabe was turning into authoritarianism. In this poem, which is part of a longer one, Severa makes a plea for justice and peace in this unjust world of reality. In the biblical book of Exodus, there is a reference to ten plagues, more..

Editorial: SF's invitation to CJ

Dec 22 (Island) The process of impeaching Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake has taken a dramatic turn with attempts being made in some quarters to intimidate lawyers supportive of her and the Golden Key depositors stepping up their protests against an alleged move to pervert the course of justice in favour of the crooks who cheated them out of billions of rupees. The CJ, too, has sought legal remedies and her supporters have adopted extra-parliamentary methods in a bid to more..

Arjuna and I didn’t see eye to eye – Gura

Dec 22 (Island) Every Sri Lankan who is old enough to remember Sri Lanka’s historic triumph in the 1996 World Cup will remember Asanka Gurusinghe – ‘The Wall’. Gura, as he was popularly known among his mates and even fans, is the only Sri Lankan to have scored a Test hundred at the MCG. He migrated to Melbourne in 1997 after a fall out with the establishment, barely a year after Sri Lanka had won the World Cup. more..

Ceylinco Life first to cross Rs. 10bn mark

Dec 22 (Island) Ceylinco Life has become the first life insurer in Sri Lanka to achieve Rs 10 billion in premium income in less than a year, a milestone the life insurance leader reached in December 2012. "Being the first to cross the Rs 10 billion threshold is a fitting tribute to our dominance of the sector," Ceylinco Life’s Managing Director and CEO R. Renganathan said. "Ceylinco Life was the last of the four private companies to commence operations with the opening up of the sector in 1987, more..

Galle, a hub in fight against Somali pirates

Dec 22 (DN) Sri Lanka's southern port of Galle has become a hub in the fight against Somali pirates who threaten international merchant shipping, a report in a new magazine said. An increasing number of vessels are embarking and disembarking armed guards used for onboard protection as they sail past Galle, located close to the main East-West shipping route across the Indian Ocean, Samuditha, a new magazine for entrepreneurs, reported. This opened up opportunities for companies more..

Wijeyadasa on impeachment, BASL resolutions and anarchy

Dec 22 (FT) The whole country is today paying for the sins of the Legislature and the Judiciary which passed the 18th Amendment, says President of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) and MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe. He further explains that the 18th Amendment would have at least referred to a referendum, but the Supreme Court held otherwise. “It is for that sin that we are paying this price by putting the whole more..

Dialog Television launches pay-per-day prepaid tv service

Dec 22 (Island) Dialog Television, Sri Lanka’s leading Direct-to-Home Digital Satellite TV announced 09th December 2012, the launch of Sri Lanka’s first ever Prepaid Television Service. The revolutionary Pay-As-You-Watch TV service from Dialog enables subscribers to select Channels genres or individual channels and pay for them on a Per-Day basis. With Channel Genres starting from as low as Rs 3/- per Day, the prepaid service from Dialog is expected to bring best in class more..

International Tamil internet conference from December 28

Dec 22 (Hindu) The three-day 11th International Tamil internet conference will be held in Annamalai University at Chidambaram from December 28 to 30, according to M. Ramanathan, Vice-Chancellor. Mr. Ramanathan told presspersons that the conference would be organised under the aegis of the International Forum for Information Technology, a non-profit organisation registered in the State of California, the U.S. He further said that the Forum had been hosting such a conference more..

Ranil issues temporary gag order to MPs on impeachment

Dec 22 (FT) UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe on Tuesday moved to restrict all members of the party’s parliamentary group from making statements to the media regarding the resolution of impeachment against Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake in his absence over the Christmas vacation. In a letter issued to all UNP MP on 18 Dec, he expressly states that only Party General Secretary Tissa Attanayake more..

Razeen appointed SL’s amb. to Teheran

Dec 22 (Island) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has appointed Mohammed Faizal Razeen as Sri Lanka’s new Ambassador to Iran. His appointment has now been approved by the High Posts Committee in Parliament, and has also been endorsed by the Govt of Iran. Hailing from a family of leading Lawyers, and High court judge Mr Razeen is the youngest son of Al Haj A.L.M. Razeen, himself a leading Lawyer of the Hambantota Bar and an Acting District Judge, who had the distinction of completing more..

Counterfeit dollar printing racket busted

Dec 22 (Island) A major counterfeit American dollar printing racket has been busted, by the Police Special Task Force, with the arrest of an African couple on Thursday night. The male suspect is from Cameroun, while the woman is a Mali national. They were traveling in a car when they were arrested by Police STF personnel near Galle Face on information received by its intelligence division. According to available evidence, they had been printing counterfeit USD 100 notes for more..

Indian Army chief visits Wanni & A'pura

Dec 22 (SLA) The Indian Army Chief, General Bikram Singh currently in Sri Lanka at the invitation of his Sri Lankan counterpart as part of his peripheral itinerary away from the capital flew to the Security Forces Headquarters-Wanni (SFHQ-W) and Anuradhapura on Friday. General Bikram Singh, upon arrival at the SFHQ-W premises drove past a Guard Turn Out presented in his honour before he was received by Major General more..

Programme to meet kidney patients' needs

Dec 22 (DN) A special programme has been drawn up to cater to the needs of kidney patients with economic difficulties in the North Central Province, said Head of the Provincial Kidney Disease Treatment Unit Dr. Asanga Ranasinghe. This includes free bus travel passes to the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital for treatment. He disclosed this at a media conference held in Anuradhapura presided by Provincial Health Minister H.B. Semasinghe recently. He said Rs. 5 million was received more..

Geetha alleges obstruction by Minister

Dec 22 (DM) Actress turned politician Geetha Kumarasinghe, the UPFA organiser of the Bentara-Elpitiya electorate, complained that she had been harassed and humiliated during the past three years, since she was appointed the organizer, by District Co-ordination Committee President Minister Gunaratne Weerakoon. She charged that the Minister obstructed every effort she put in for development in the area. “I have committed myself to my duty as the organiser by giving up my more..

'SL to send astronaut to space in 5 years'

Dec 22 (DM) Sri Lanka will send its first astronaut to space within the next seven years with the help of the Chinese Govt now that we have entered the space age with the launching of the SupremeSat–1 on Nov 27, Minister Tissa Vitharana said. He said a private Sri Lankan company SupremeSat has entered into a partnership agreement with China Great wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) for the design, more..

No trace of seven buried by landslide

Dec 22 (Island) There was evidence to prove that seven persons disappeared with the Nikaloya mountain landslide. Since the landslide last Monday (17) six women and a male had not been accounted for. They were six members of one family, S. Sathasivam (58), K. Saroja (60), K. Letchchami (50), S. Priyadarshani (25), S. Bhavani (23), and K. Sharmila (20). The seventh victim was S. Kumari (35) who had gone there to watch the landslide. The bodies of four others that were recovered had more..

Legislature-judiciary showdown in Sri Lanka

Dec 22 (Hindu) The stage is set in Sri Lanka for a showdown between the legislature and the executive on one side, and the judiciary on the other,with the Court of Appeal, in a landmark decision, holding that it had the jurisdiction to hear a case against the findings of a Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC). In effect, it ordered a stop to the parliamentary impeachment proceedings against Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake. The PSC had found the CJ guilty of misconduct and more..

BASL Chief commends President

Dec 22 (Island) UNP MP and Bar Association of Sri Lanka president Wijedasa Rajapakshe commended President Mahinda Rajapaksa for paying a visit to his residence at Nawala after the shooting incident at his residence where a gunshot mark were left on a wall. But he expressed his displeasure over the state media for trying to cover up the incident by attributing the gunshots to bursting of crackers and undermining the more..

Children's homes under NCP supervision

Dec 22 (DN) All child care centres and foster homes will come under close scrutiny of the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) so as to improve the services of such homes, Minister Tissa Karaliyadda said. The minister said there should be a more effective and broad mechanism to protect children from misconduct reported from certain child care centres and foster homes. A considerable number of abuse in children's homes throughout the country are being reported regularly. more..

President congratulates first female President - elect of S Korea

Dec 22 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday sent a congratulatory message to the President-elect of the Republic of Korea , Park Geun-Hye on her historic win as the first female leader of the country. “Your emphatic victory is a reflection of the trust in your vision and politics placed on you by the people of your country,” President Rajapaksa said. Full text of the message: Her Excellency Park Guen-Hye President-elect of the Republic of Korea Excellency, “It is with great pleasure that I more..

'Silver and arsenic of non-earth origin found in red rain cells'

Dec 22 (Island) Dr. Chandra Wickramasinghe of the Center for Astrobiology, in the Buckingham Uni, UK said the cells found in the ‘Red Rain’ collected, according to preliminary investigations, contain high concentrations of arsenic and silver and "that makes them extremely unlikely to be of any earth origin". Wickramasinghe, who had just returned to the Buckingham Uni with several samples of more..

Significant drop in vegetable prices

Dec 22 (DN) There is a significant drop in vegetable prices at the Manning market this month compared to the previous month with large supplies being brought from Nuwara Eliya, Jaffna,Anuradhapura, Kandy, Matale and Embilipitiya. Large quantities of vegetables, including, beans, cucumber, snake bean, luffa, pumpkin, ladies fingers, Thai eggplant, wing beans, bitter gourd, carrot, cabbage, radish, lemon, beetroot and snake gourd have reached the Manning Market from Kandy, Matale, more..

Kandy Municipal budget passed unopposed

Dec 22 (Island) The Kandy Municipal Council’s budget 2013 tabled by Mayor Mahindra Ratwatte was passed unopposed at a special council meeting yesterday. The Leader of the Opposition Neranjan Wijeyaratne (UNP) and his colleagues while pointing out some shortcomings in the Mayor’s maiden budget said they were in favour of the development proposals for Kandy and the proposals for the welfare of the council employees. The Opposition praised Mayor Ratwatte in particular for more..

President directs UPFA group to work with Muzammil’s team

Dec 22 (Island) President Mahinda Rajapaksa early this week told UPFA members in the CMC that they should work closely with the UNP-led administration. President said that priority should be given to the development of the City though the UNP was in control of the council. SLFP leader was responding to a UPFA member, who pointed out that the ongoing development work would only benefit the UNP. more..

Weather misery continues albeit on reduced scale

Dec 22 (Island) The death toll from the extreme weather conditions experienced in the country in recent days has risen to 27 while 14 individuals remain missing. Though the rain had ceased in most parts of the country, several areas remain inundated, affecting more than 329,401 civilians, while 56,543 had been left displaced in 15 districts by yesterday, the DMC said. About 1,442 houses had been destroyed and 4,879 others damaged due to floods and landslides. more..

Speaker, PSC will not comply with court summons

Dec 22 (Island) Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody said that the Speaker, the members of the PSC that probed the charges mentioned in the impeachment motion against CJ and the Secretary General of Parliament would not comply with the Court of Appeal notices issued to them. He said that Speaker Anura Bandaranaike, in his historic ruling delivered in Parliament in 2001 said that the legislature and the judiciary must not intervene in each other’s territory. more..

Issuing notices on Speaker et al, a legal obligation – Court of Appeal

Dec 22 (Island) The Court of Appeal yesterday said that the order to issue notice on the respondents, the Speaker and the Members of the Parliamentary Select Committee, was nothing but a legal obligation to afford the respondents an opportunity of being heard. Court issued notice returnable on Jan 3, 2013 in respect of the Writ Application filed by CJ Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, against the findings of the PSC which more..

Editorial: Only the truth will set us free

Dec 22 (DM) Through the past saga in Sri Lankan politics, we have seen politicians of every hue and shade when having being voted into power by the people to serve them, they choose instead to abdicate their responsibilities. The voters and party interests are forgotten. The intelligent reader needs ask whether this is not done for personal gain. Such politicians may cease to be true representatives of the people. The legislature has to maintain its identity. In other words, it’s called to more..

Devalued Dignitaries

Dec 22 (DM) Constitutional croaks trumpet awesome sayings to mystify simple minds: Presidential Powers are Overwhelming? Parliament is Supreme? Judiciary is Independent? Sovereignty is with the People…Helpless People stuffed on sovereignty, blandly watched a horrid exchange of rapid fire by the Executive- Legislature- Judiciary. Bruised and bloodied… with no soft hands. Dignitaries stand deservingly devalued and devastated for ungainly conduct; needlessly more..

Iran launches $106-million power project

Dec 22 (PTV) An Iranian private company has launched a USD106-million project in Sri Lanka to transfer electricity to 180,000 families in the rural areas of the South Asian country. The deal, nicknamed "RE8," was signed into contract during a ceremony attended by the Managing Director of SUNIR (Iran Power & Water Equipment and Services Export Company) Mohammad Parsa and Sri Lanka’s former Deputy Energy Minister more..

FFSL looking for foreign coach

Dec 22 (DM) The Sri Lanka National Football Team is to be trained under a specialized foreign coach as aprt of preparations for the forthcoming Asia Challenge Trophy Football Tournament scheduled to be held in March, 2013. Sri Lanka Football Federation and the Ministry of Sports have expedited the negotiations with Brazil and Japan to gain the services of a highly qualified coach. This decision was taken after considering the more..

JVP union accuses Health Ministry of inaction over sexual attacks

Dec 22 (Island) Two female employees of the Medical Supplies Division (MSD) and another attached to the National Hospital have complained to Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena that they are victims of sexual harassment but no action has been taken by the Health Ministry to probe their complaints, according to a JVP-led trade union alleges. The investigation unit had not at least called for explanations from the suspects, more..

Lawyer Upul Jayasuriya complains to IGP on threats to his life

Dec 22 (DM) Hard on the heels of reports on gunshots being heard near the residence of BASL President Wijedasa Rajapakshe, senior attorney and former BASL secretary yesterday complained to the IGP alleging threats to his life and property. Mr. Jayasuriya in his complaint said the threats emerged after he had taken an initiative against the impeachment that is being brought proposing the removal of CJ more..

Triple murder: Blinded by love, Sri Lankan kills 3 family members

Dec 22 (E24|7) An illicit love affair has resulted in a man allegedly strangling his wife and elder son to death before setting his house on fire, killing an infant too, it has been revealed. The chilling triple murder which occurred near the Deaf and Blind School junction in Ratmalana, a suburb of Colombo, has sent shockwaves around the country as gruesome details emerged for the reason behind the killings. It was his love affair with a more..

Test paper leak: CID questions Exam Dept. staff

Dec 22 (DM) The CID has for past couple days being questioning the officials attached to the computer section of the Examinations Department over the alleged leak in the GCE O/L Science Paper, Minister Bandula Gunawardane said yesterday. Eighteen multiple choice questions in the Science Paper were identical to the questions in model test paper discussed at a private tuition class prior to the examination. more..

'No intention of retiring from Test cricket'

Dec 22 (AD) Former Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan speaking to Ada Derana stated that he has not intension of retiring from Test cricket and that he will consider it only after the Australian tour. The opener showed he still has what it takes to perform at the highest level after notching up 147 in the second innings of his side’s 137-run loss to Australia in Hobart last week. But after 13 years in the Test side, the 36-year-old more..

Deputy speaker scoffs at appeals court oder

Dec 22 (DN) The order given by Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa stands on the matter of impeachment of Chief Justice Dr Shirani Bandaranayaka, said Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody yesterday, adding that no Court shall issue notices on the Speaker of the Parliament or members of the PSC. He said that such notices are a nullity. He said this on being asked about the Court of Appeal yesterday issuing notice on the respondents more..

Jaffna docs on warpath after sword attack on consultant

Dec 22 (Island) All doctors attached to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital launched a 48-hour strike yesterday in protest against the failure on the part of the police to arrest the person who attacked Consultant ENT surgeon Dr. Balakrishna Tirumaran. In the event of the police failing to apprehend the attacker, the GMOA will launch a strike in the Northern Province today. He was attacked with a sword by an unknown person on Thursday more..

Sri Lanka arrests 100 Chinese for currency fraud

Dec 22 (AFP) Police have arrested 100 Chinese nationals for an online currency fraud scam in a string of night-time raids in and around Colombo, according to officials. "They have defrauded their countrymen by making them... transfer money to accounts maintained in Sri Lanka in the names of those arrested," SSP Prishantha Jayakody, told AFP on Saturday. Police said that the 74 men and 26 women were arrested on Friday night at more..

Editorial: This is not fair play

Dec 22 (CT) Germany under the war-mongering dictator, Adolf Hitler used sport to sometimes settle scores with political opponents or rival Heads of State. The Chinese, the Cubans and the East Germans were heavily protective or possessive of their sportsmen, and the former continues to this day, to use sport to bolster their image while taking on the Russians, British and Americans at the Olympics. In a nutshell, sport is today not about who-won-the-match, but about life and power, more..