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TNA says it has no faith in PSC

July 9 (Island) The TNA yesterday said that it had no confidence in the proposed Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) on the national question. "We have no confidence in the proposed Parliamentary Select Committee as that will also be a strategy adopted by the government to delay the process of finding a solution to the ethnic question," TNA spokesman and Jaffna District MP Suresh Premachandran said more..

BTI bacteria available from Friday

July 9 (Island) Following the approval, granted to a private firm, to import microbial insecticide - BTI bacteria, the first stock would arrive in the country from the US and would be released to the local market on Friday. Western Province Health Director Dr. Amal Harsha de Silva told The Island yesterday that the tests conducted in the Dehiwela area using the solid Bacillus Thuringiensis Israelensis (BTI) bacteria had been hundred percent successful. more..

TNA protest against Army in Mannar

July 9 (Hindu) Even as the Tamil political parties are crying foul over the armed forces occupying large tracts of private land, the Sri Lankan Army is organising a seminar to “share the experience on the journey towards lasting peace and stability through reconstruction, resettlement, rehabilitation, reintegration and reconciliation.” The Army organised a seminar last year to share with the world how it defeated terrorism in Sri Lanka. This year, from August 8 to August 10, it will share with the world its model of how lasting peace can be achieved. more..

Don't whip up Tamil sentiments: Narayanasamy to parties

July 9 (PTI) Amid strident opposition to training of Sri Lankan airmen by India, Minister of State in PMO V Narayanasamy on Sunday stressed the need for cordial ties with the neighbour in the larger interest of Tamils in the island and asked political parties in Tamil Nadu to desist from "whipping up" Tamil sentiments. "Sri Lanka is our neighbouring country. There should be cordial and friendly relations with that nation in the larger interest of the Sri Lankan Tamils and more..

Salley wants Muslim parties to join hands

July 9 (Island) Maverick UPFA politician Azath Salley requested the three major Muslim political parties, recognized by the Elections Commissioner, to join hands and make known their election manifesto to the Muslim community, in the Eastern Province, before the Provincial Council elections, to be held later this year. Salley, a former UNP Deputy Mayor of the Colombo Municipal Council, who now acts as an in dependent in the UPFA Group, told The Island that the Muslim political parties, more..

Private bus workers on Kurunegala - Kuliyapitiya route on strike

July 9 (NF) Private bus workers on the Kurunegala - Kuliyapitiya route and on by routes operating from Kandy to Mahiyanganaya, have commenced a strike. The strike commenced by workers on private buses operating on by roads between Kandy and Mahiyanagnaya, came into effect this morning. Chairman of the Kandy Private Bus Company, Gamini Padmalal Kulatunga stated that the strike action was launched in protest over the more..

Govt’s Airport project threatens 1250 jobs

July 9 (NS) The Govt is planning to acquire either a part or in the entirety an iconic tea estate to go ahead with plans to construct a domestic airport in the hill country to cater to the booming tourism sector, The Nation reliably learns. “We have earmarked a plot of land in Pedro Tea Estate in the Nuwara - Eliya district and this is the most suitable land so far we have identified for this purpose”, the GA, Nuwara-Eliya, D.P.G. Kumarasiri said. more..

Jayalalitha’s air farce manoeuver, a sign of India’s changing mood?

July 9 (LB) On Friday, the Chennai wing of India’s Press Information Bureau issued a one-line statement. It read: “All Sri Lankan trainees are being sent off today from this (Tambaram air force) station as per instruction of the Ministry of Defence.” The one-line statement was shrouding an embarrassing political cowing down by the Congress led Central Govt to its Tamil Nadu ally, more..

Shouts can’t raise up public servants’ salaries

July 9 (Island) There was a procedure in increasing the salaries of Public Servants. It could not be raised merely because a group of bearded redshirts carrying placards shout for wage-hikes, said Senior Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama on Sunday. He was addressing a meeting after opening the Refurbished Textile Weaving Centre at Mawathagama in Hataraliyadda. It was refurbished at a cost of Rs. 2 million. more..

Dengue mosquito expands breeding pattern

July 9 (DN) The Health Ministry yesterday warned the public to be extra vigilant on the dengue epidemic following more evidence showing the dengue mosquito had taken to breeding in ice-cream, yoghurt and margarine cups, drinks cans and all kinds of containers used to pack foods in addition to its normal breeding sources of used receptacles, overhead gutters, domestic wells and discarded tyres. The largest dengue mosquito breeding source to be discarded receptacles. more..

Gota goes berserk

July 9 (SL) Defence Secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa went berserk when contacted by The Sunday Leader to clarify and find out if he was aware that the management at SriLankan Airlines had taken a decision to change a wide bodied A340 scheduled to fly to Zurich on Friday July 13, to a smaller A330. The change was to be made so that a SriLankan Airline pilot, who is dating a niece of President Mahinda Rajapaksa could personally fly the aircraft that would carry a ‘puppy dog’ for more..

Sri Lanka urged to depoliticise tea estate wages

July 9 (LBO) Sri Lanka has been urged to replace its ageing politicised wage structure with a productivity linked model, to sustain the viability of the centuries old brew. Trade unions, backed by ethnic minority political groups, prefer a fixed day’s wage instead of a productivity-linked pay for some 400,000 estate workers. Unions have often struck work, until the government gives in for some of their demands. more..

Govt. readying for vote robbery - Opposition

July 9 (Island) Opposition political party leaders yesterday alleged that the govt was getting ready for a massive ‘robbery of votes’ at the forthcoming Provincial Council polls. They said that despite the Elections Commissioner, too, recently pointing out the possibility of such a ‘robbery of votes’ no action had been taken to prevent it. Addressing a press conference at the Opposition Leader’s office, UNP MP Mangala Samaraweera, TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran, and more..

'Political parties’ promise not to launch processions after nominations'

July 9 (Island) Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya yesterday said that all major political parties and groups contesting the forthcoming PC polls for the Eastern, Sabaragamuwa and North-Central Provinces had assured him that processions wouldn’t be launched after the handing over of nominations. Chief Returning Officers will accept nominations from Thursday (7) until July 19 noon. more..

Ex cadres can enter local councils

July 9 (CG) Defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa says rehabilitated former LTTE cadres will have a chance to contest for the local councils in future. The Defence Ministry quoted Rajapaksa as saying an opportunity will also be given to north and east youth and also ex-cadres during enlistment to man new police stations which are being established. “Not only former senior ex-LTTE leaders who are involved in national and provincial level politics but there is chance for more..

Sri Lanka to introduce severe punishments against child abuse

July 9 (Xinhua) With increasing child abuses in Sri Lanka, the govt is planning to impose tough punishments against the offenders. Discussions are underway with the Ministry of Justice and other law enforcement officials to introduce severe punishments on culprits, said Asoka Alawatta, acting Secretary of the Child Development and Women's Affairs Ministry. more..

Editorial: Rape of the innocents

July 9 (DM) Three years after the conclusion of the war against terrorism, the country is at a different war today. While many a cry is raised against the rampant rape rate of children, the law enforcement authorities as well as the parents seem equally helpless when it comes to providing protection for children. Police media spokesman, Ajith Rohana went on record to say that 975 cases of child rape and abuse have been reported within the last six months. more..

Sri Lankan stocks down 0.07 percent

July 9 (LBO) Stocks closed down 0.07 percent on Monday, despite investor interest in selected stocks like Carsons Cumberbatch PLC, brokers said. The broader All Share Price Index dipped 3.58 points to end at 4,925.06, while the liquid 25-stock tracker Milanka Price Index edged up 0.98 points to close at 4,360.66. The S&P Sri Lanka indice, which tracks the 20 most liquid stocks, dipped 0.05 points to end at 2,796.46. Monday’s turnover ended at 125.14 million rupees more..

Focus on food insecurity in Jaffna

July 9 (IRIN) In Jaffna District, Parameswary Rasakumar, 32, a mother of two, points to an assortment of red plastic containers on the floor of her makeshift shelter, holding what little food the family has. “That’s it. That’s all the food we have in the house at the moment.” Her husband works as a casual day labourer. “We no longer get any food assistance from the govt and now have to buy food on credit. more..

Sri Lankan court orders release of 10 T.N. fishermen

July 9 (PTI) A court in Sri Lanka on Monday ordered release of 10 Tamil Nadu fishermen who were taken into custody by Sri Lankan Navalmen on July 1. The fishermen and their boats would be handed over to the Indian Coast Guard at the International Maritime boundary line today or tomorrow, Assistant Director of Fisheries A. Karithikeyan told reporters here. The fishermen, who put to sea from here, had strayed into the Lankan waters due to strong winds and rough sea. more..

Sierra Global brings E-waste program to telecom sector

July 9 (DM) Sierra Global Network Private Limited has joined hand with Think Green, a licensed company approved by the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) for pioneering in providing safe and reliable electronic waste management services in Sri Lanka. “Electrical and electronic equipment that is thrown away contains heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and beryllium. These metals become mixed into the food chain and can cause harm to humans, animals and plants. more..

New building for Secretariat of Personal Identification at Battaramulla

July 9 (MoD) Secretary Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa graced the occasion of the foundation stone laying ceremony for the Secretariat of Personal Identification at Battaramulla today (5). Hon. Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa, upon the invitation of Secretary Defence laid the foundation stone at the auspicious moment. The new building constructed on the direction of the President as a part more..

Korean Volunteers to provide ICT Training in Sri Lanka

July 9 (GDI) Korean IT Volunteers (KIV) altogether comprising four teams arrived in Sri Lanka on Friday (06) under a NIA / ITU / TRCSL Program to engage in providing ICT training to select groups during the months of July & August 2012. The NIA/ITU/TRCSL KIV program 2012 is being co – ordinated by the ITU Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific for ICT enhancement in Sri Lanka. The Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka will deploy these teams to train more..

PHI killed during dengue inspection

July 9 (AD) A Public Health Inspector (PHI) was reportedly killed following an assault by householders during a dengue inspection carried out in the Kantale area today, police said. The 52-year-old PHI in question had been admitted to the Kantale Hospital where he had succumbed to injuries sustained from the assault, at a residence in Thambalagamuwa today afternoon. An argument between the home owners and the PHI regarding possible dengue mosquito breeding areas more..

Sri Lanka attracts less FDIs in 2011

July 9 (DM) Sri Lanka attracted approximately US$ 300 million in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) during 2011, as compared with US$ 478 million and US$ 404 million in 2010 and 2009, according to World Investment Report by UNCTAD. FDI outflows from the country were recorded at US$ 50 million. However, BoI had previously indicated that Sri Lanka had exceeded US$ 1 billion FDI for 2011, with a stated target of US$ 1.75 billion more..

Rain ruins follow-up to exciting first day

July 9 (CI) Rain returned to haunt this Test series after the promise of an exciting game in Pallekele on the first day, when the bowlers dominated and the teams finished even. But the threat of poor weather would always remain at the venue. It had rained before the Test and early on the second day as well. A short sunny spell an hour before the start gave hope that was crushed when the showers returned, grew heavy and ensured a washout. The rain took a break off and on, but each more..

Anuradhapura DC of AiPM established

July 9 (LT) Anuradhapura branch of ‘Anti-imperialist Peoples’ Movement was held at CTC Hall on the 8th amidst a large gathering and its District Committee was elected. The Co- President of ‘Anti-imperialist Peoples’ Movement’ and Senior Lecturer of Sri Jayawardenepura University Ven. Dhambara Amila Thero, Co-President of AiPM, Member of the Political Bureau of the JVP and President of National Trade Union Center (NTUC) K.D. Lal Kanthe and Members of the more..

'Lay people not qualified to restrict clergy'

July 9 (DM) Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka had informed JHU that his party is of the opinion that the lay people are not qualified to impose restrictions on the clergy. This opinion had been expressed by the former Army Commander Fonseka with regard to the private members motion that has been presented by UNP MP Wijedasa Rajapakse prohibiting clergy from getting into active politics. Fonseka had more..

No doubts over Dr. Mendis’ death: Wife

July 9 (DM) The court order directing the Colombo Judicial Medical Officer (JMO) to conduct the postmortem examination on the body of Dr. Geethanjana Mendis was revoked by a Colombo court after his wife filed an affidavit that she had no doubt about her husband’s death being of natural consequences. However, Dr. Mendis’s brother and the wife of had earlier informed the police that they had doubts about his death and had requested that an inquiry be conducted. more..

'45 percent water supplied to Colombo wasted'

July 9 (CT) Out of the water supplied to the city of Colombo nearly 45% of it gets wasted, a survey conducted by the National Water Supply and Drainage Board (NWSDB) reveals. When it was found earlier that the highest wastage occurs in cluster houses, the NWSDB took steps to fix water meters to such households. By that the NWSDB managed to save 50% of the wastage. This was revealed at a meeting held in Colombo recently to evaluate the services rendered by the more..

Academics want new contract with govt

July 9 (DM) Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA) president Dr. Nirmal Dewasiri said that the academics wished enter into a new contract with the govt in order to solve key problems which they face such as lack autonomy, academic freedom and resources and salary anomalies. He said that there was to be a crucial meeting on Thursday with Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga to discuss at length the problems faced by the academics. more..

I’m still a prisoner- SF

July 9 (DM) Former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka said today that he is still a prisoner. “I was released as a faced to show the public that I’m a free man, but in reality, I’m still a prisoner on one hand. My democratic rights have been curtailed and I’m fighting to restore them,” he said. The Former Army Commander made these remarks when his appeal against a court martial conviction was taken up today at the Court Of Appeal. “I have come here to ensure that the people here the truth. more..

Public suffering due to power-intoxicate UPFA politicos - UNP

July 9 (AD) UPFA politicians, intoxicated due excessive power, have now started to cause suffering to the innocent public, says UNP media spokesman Gayantha Karunathilaka citing the recent arrests of UPFA local politicians over child abuse incidents in Akuressa and Tangalle. He stated that this situation has become so grave that even the country’s President had declared that “it’s not safe for even a child to walk on the road”. In addition to the economic hardships more..

Sri Lanka Debrief News-09.07.2012

Despite illness, Jairam Ramesh to visit Sri Lanka

July 9 (Hindu) When Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh arrives here on July 11, he will be the second Cabinet Minister to visit Sri Lanka this year. Mr. Ramesh, who is currently being treated at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, confirmed that he was undertaking the trip despite the fact that he had been advised rest by his doctors. “I was admitted to AIIMS on Saturday afternoon with severe pain and glandular inflammation arising from a more..

Drought-stricken A’pura to get 5,000 agro wells

July 9 (DN) The govt on the direction of President Mahinda Rajapaksa will build 5,000 agro wells in the Anuradhapura district to cope with the drought and as a relief measure to farmers, Agrarian Services and Wildlife Minister S M Chandrasena said. He was addressing a meeting of farming associations in the Anuradhapura district at Kurundankulama on Saturday. This programme will be implemented in the North Central Province to renovate agrarian wells in the area. more..

Temporary ID cards for elections

July 9 (CT) The Election Secretariat has taken steps to issue temporary Identity Cards for those voters who do not possess valid identity cards for the upcoming Eastern, Sabaragamuwa and North Central Provincial Council elections, Election Commissioner, Mahinda Deshapriya said. The Election Commissioner said that applications for the temporary identity cards can be obtained by the Grama Niladari or from the Superintendants of estates. more..

Sri Lanka owes 16 billion rupees to fertiliser importers

July 9 (LBO) Sri Lanka owes fertiliser importers some 16.0 billion rupees for purchasing fertiliser to be distributed among farmers growing a wide range of crops, a local fertiliser company said. Agri inputs supplier, AgStar Fertlisers, which markets a range of products from custom-blended fertilisers, seeds and planting materials, said 949 million rupees remains outstanding from the govt last year, by way of subsidy reimbursements. “Currently the industry is faced with a lack of liquidity more..

Sanjana Putha 04

July 10 (NS) Last week began with a press conference on human smuggling and trafficking. Mid-week, the government expressed renewed interest in regulating web content, through cdoes not have the support of major political parties, the JHU said, today. JHU deputy secretary Udaya Gammanpila revealed this during a media briefing held in Colombo, today. According to him, the UPFA, UNP, LSSP and DNA are against this amendment. He further said that UPFA leader President Mahinda Rajapaksa strongly opposed the amendment and more..

Parents of dead Sri Lankan Tamil prisoner 'denied last rites'

July 9 (BBC) The parents of a prisoner who died in obscure circumstances in Sri Lanka are locked in a battle with officials who say his body cannot be taken to his home town for the last rites. Ganesan Nimalaruban died and several other inmates, all Tamil Tiger suspects, were reportedly injured after a failed prison mutiny in the north. The authorities deny mistreating him, saying he died of a heart attack. more..