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Sinhala language skills for ex-LTTErs

July 16 (DN) The remaining ex-LTTE combatants in the govt’s protective accommodation and rehabilitation centres in the country are to receive Sinhala language training as part of their rehabilitation. There are 698 former LTTE cadres remaining in the rehabilitation centres at present and the govt has released over 11, 000 former LTTE cadres after rehabilitating them. The govt has allocated Rs 720 million for more..

'Media blowing issues out of proportion'

July 16 (Island) Every possible measure would be adopted to prevent dengue reaching epidemic proportions in Sri Lanka, said Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena after opening the High Dependency Unit (HDU) of the maternity ward of the Kandy General Hospital last Friday 13. More lives were lost in road accidents than due to dengue in the country, Minister Sirisena said. About 75 lives had been lost due to dengue this year. Numerous measures were taken to prevent more..

SC allows FR petition of PI

July 16 (CT) A Police Inspector, who was given a punishment transfer for arresting an individual for posing as an army officer attached to the Secretary, Ministry of Defence, was granted leave by the Supreme Court to proceed with a Fundamental Rights petition against the police. Police Inspector Janaka Vidanachchi, in his petition, stated that on 27 January 2012, he had, while serving in the Bandarawela Police, arrested an individual by the name of K.P. Ajith Harsana, who more..

Sinhala film release in Jaffna after 30 years

July 16 (DM) For the first time after 30 years, a Tamil sub-titled version of a new Sinhala film will be released at Raja Cinema, Jaffna on Friday. Chandraratne Mapitigama’s latest Sinhala movie ‘Sihinaya Dige Enna’ will be screened in the Jaffna cinema bringing new hope for peace through the arts. The film produced by Samantha Ranasinghe, features Sanath Gunathilaka, Veena Jayakody, Udari Warnakulasuriya, Amila Abeysekara, Nayana Kumari and others more..

Defence Secretary tells Dharmaraja kids their future is in their hands

July 16 (Island) There was plenty of opportunity for investment in the country under the peaceful environment created by the government after 30 years of turmoil and chaos, said the Defence Secretary at the annual prize giving of Dharmaraja College, Kandy on Saturday. What was required today were interest and stamina to make life successful, Gotabaya Rajapaksa said claiming that the responsibility of the government had been fulfilled in creating an environment to more..

See Lanka

July 16 (TOI) From the magnificent stupas at Anuradhapura to the street food of Colombo, from the Cave of Celestial Maidens to the beach at Galle, Sri Lanka offers many changes of scene. Stories apart, what I did remember best about Sri Lanka, my mother asked me when I got home. "The lotus ponds of Anuradhapura and the lagoons of Jaffna," I replied. "And, mmm, the egg-hoppers in Colombo's cubby-hole eateries." The lotus ponds in Anuradhapura are world heritage ornaments: splendid swathes of inky waters dotted with more..

Politico provokes Docs’ strike at Dodangoda hospital

July 16 (Island) Doctors at the Dodangoda peripheral hospital, in the Kalutara district, launched a lightning strike yesterday after a key Pradeshiya Shaba Opposition member incited villagers there against them over the death of a three-year-old child who choked to death on June 27. Leaflets had been distributed among people in the area against the Dodangoda hospital doctors. As a result, the villagers had asked the more..

Sri Lankan military officers in Tamil Nadu spark protests

July 16 (NDTV) Close on the heels of the recent objection raised by Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa to the training of Sri Lankan airmen at the Indian Air Force station in Tambaram, Chennai, two Lankan officers - Rear Admiral SN Ranasinghe and Major General Jayasularaaga Dias - have arrived at the hill station of Coonoor, sparking protests. The officers are part of a 25-member delegation from 10 countries for a one day programme at the Defence Services more..

'Make mud slinging websites pay compensation'

July 16 (Island) It’s high time for all trade unions to get together and have discussions on initiating a social security scheme for the benefit of employees, including domestics and migrant workers, Anton Marcus said yesterday. Marcus, Secretary of the Free Trade Zones and General Service Employees Union (FTZGSEU), told The Island that the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) issue had shown that a large sum of money from the EPF had been used by the Govt for its own purposes. more..

'Turning boats back works'

July 16 (AAP) Sri Lanka's high commissioner to Australia says turning boats back to his country will deter asylum seekers from making the journey to Australia. Admiral Thisara Samarasinghe says asylum seekers will be forced to find other ways of getting to Australia if their boats are prevented from leaving Sri Lankan waters. "Turning the boats around will deter people," he told ABC Radio on Monday. "They know that they can't leave Sri Lankan soil." more..

Land distribution: another elections handout?

July 16 (Island) Low income families in most parts of the country will recieve land from the govt on Tuesday, Executive Director of the Land Reforms Commission Hariguptha Rohanadeera said. He said that under the Ranbima deeds distribution programme, launched in 2005, 5,000 blocks of land would be distributed. Rohanadeera said many low income earners in the Eastern, Sabaragamuwa and Southern provinces and in many other districts of the other provinces would get blocks of land for more..

CBEU defends irregular payments

July 16 (Island) The State banking sector trade union giant, the Ceylon Bank Employees Union, now on warpath over a salary dispute, strongly defended the banks’ paying the PAYE (Pay As You Earn) tax of employees on the basis that their salary structure was far too low when compared with the private sector. The CBEU was responding to a query on whether it was reasonable on their part to strike inspite of the Treasury allowing banks to pay their PAYE tax in violation of financial regulations. CBEU insisted that it wasn’t a privilege given only to more..

Drop Tamil Eelam agenda: Chidambaram to Karunanidhi

July 16 (TOI) Union minister P Chidambaram on Sunday conveyed to DMK chief M Karunanidhi the central govt's displeasure over a move by the ally to pass a resolution to demand Tamil Eelam at a meeting of the Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) in Chennai on August 12. The TESO, which comprises supporters of Eelam (separate Tamil land in Sri Lanka) and was revived by Karunanidhi after three decades, more..

Sri Lanka sovereign credit outlook downgraded

July 16 (Island) Sri Lanka’s sovereign credit outlook has been downgraded to ‘stable’ from ‘positive’ with the fiscal and external sectors expected to remain under stress in the months ahead, Standard Chartered Bank said in a recent report, urging investors to pick up future bond issues rather than existing issues in the secondary market. The bank has forecast the budget deficit to reach 7% of GDP this year, missing the 6.2% target for the more..

Wife clubbed to death, torched inside car

July 16 (Island) A businessman who had been accused of murdering his wife 20 years ago, was produced before the Panadura Magistrate on the 12th and was remanded until the case is concluded. The accused is a resident of Rambewa, in Mihintale. He had said that while his wife Dilani Wellala (32) was in the car, a fire cracker lit by their child had set fire to her. Following a complaint made to the Piliyandala police the victim had been buried at the Dolekanatta Cemetery. more..

WikiLeaks and Milinda Moragoda

July 16 (SL) Sometime in 2009, in what was to become a defining moment in the new Digital Age, Bradley Manning, a 24-year-old army private based at an outpost in Iraq began to download a veritable trove of classified cables dispatched by U.S. missions around the world onto a thumb drive. Whether Manning stepped into a minefield driven by his runaway personal curiosity, or with an ulterior motive, is something we may come to more..

‘Mafia’ gamed the stock market

July 16 (LB) From one of the best performing capital markets in the world to one of its worst within two years-what the hell happened to the Colombo Stock Exchange? It is Newtonian physics, says Thilak Karunarathne, chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), dryly: What goes up must come down. “In 2009, there was euphoria in the country after the war and the market just took off,” Karunarathne explained, more..

'Trinco Port area open for investment'

July 16 (ST) More than 4,000 acres of land at the Trincomalee Port is available to the private sector for investment projects, Ports Deputy Minister Rohitha Abeygunawardena said. He said in addition to Sri Lankan companies, Indian, Singaporean and Swiss companies have already made offers for a range of investments to the tune of Rs. 340 billion. He said the offers included projects ranging from cement plants, a ship repair facility and oceanic farming of fin fish. more..

Domestic Airports in the East to be expanded

July 16 (GDI) The government has taken measures to develop the domestic airports in the Eastern Province. Accordingly the domestic airports in the Ampara, Batticaloa and Trincomalee districts will be developed facilitating them to handle landing of larger aircrafts. These measures have been taken to facilities the visiting Commonwealth Heads of States to tour the Eastern Province. Sri Lanka is hosting the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 2013 and more..

Norwegian attempt to forge TNA-SLMC alliance fails

July 16 (Island) An attempt by Norway to persuade the TNA and the SLMC to coalesce to contest the upcoming PC elections to the Eastern Provincial Council has failed, The Island reliably learns. The Norwegian Embassy in Colombo had done its best to bring the two parties together, giving rise to speculation in political circles that an alliance between them was in the making, but its attempt had come a cropper, more..

FTZ workers call for social security scheme

July 16 (Island) It’s high time all trade unions got together and have discussions on initiating a social security scheme for the benefit of employees, including domestics and migrant workers, Anton Marcus said yesterday. Marcus, Secretary of the Free Trade Zones and General Service Employees Union (FTZGSEU), told The Island that the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) issue had shown that a large sum of money from the EPF had been used by the Govt more..

Over 400 hospitalized in Batticaloa from food poisoning

July 16 (Xinhua) Over 400 people were hospitalized in eastern Sri Lanka on Monday after suffering from food poisoning. Police spokesman Ajith Rohana said that the people had attended a function in Batticaloa the previous evening and fell sick after consuming food at the event. Most of those who fell ill were suffering from diarrhea and they were not in a serious condition. Around 150 people were admitted more..

Sri Lanka names new fish for UK's Dawkins

July 16 (SBS) Sri Lanka has named a new fish genus for British atheist Richard Dawkins as a tribute to the diversity of nature, scientists say. Sri Lankan scientists have identified a new genus of freshwater fish and named it after the evolutionary biologist and renowned atheist Richard Dawkins. Lead researcher Rohan Pethiyagoda said the new genus, named Dawkinsia, comprises nine species that are found only in South Asia and are characterised by long filaments that more..

President Rajapaksa appoints former SG Sarath Fernando as new AG

July 16 (IL) Former Solicitor General, President’s Counsel Sarath Palitha Fernando was sworn in as the new Attorney General of Sri Lanka before President Mahinda Rajapaksa a short while ago at Temple Trees. Secretary to the President, Lalith Weeratunga was present at the occasion. President Rajapaksa has appointed former SG Sarath Palitha Fernando as the new Attorney General of Sri Lanka with more..

Karunanidhi decides to drop Eelam agenda from TESO conference

July 16 (TOI) A day after Union home minister P Chidambaram called on him, DMK chief M Karunanidhi on Monday said the demand for Eelam will not be a topic of discussion at the proposed conference of the recently revived Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) to be held in Chennai on August 12. To a query from reporters, Karunanidhi said, "It's different to have an opinion on a separate Eelam, but we don't more..

Editorial: Disciplining the decision-makers

July 16 (DM) Calling a spade a spade is frankness; but calling it a fork is insolence. For some reason, the individuals who are voted into power by people seem to resort to the latter after they march to the House. Indiscipline of the MPs both in and out of Parliament has always disgraced the voters who thought they were fit enough to represent them. Not only among the public, but also within the House, the disciplined few have on many occasions, expressed concern on more..

New Media Ministry Secretary assumes duties

July 16 (GDI) The Secretary to the Ministry of Mass Media and Information Dr. Chritha Herath assumed duties today amidst invoking blessings by the Maha Sangha and the leaders of other religious faiths. The Director General of Government Information Professor Ariyaratne Atugala, the Additional Director General of Information Chandrapala Liyanage, Director of Information Wasantha Priya Ramanayake, Director of the Media Centre for National Development Ariya Rubasinghe, more..

Massive Eastern development in line with 2013 Deyata Kirula

July 16 (GDI) The govt launched a massive development program in the Eastern Province on Sunday in preparation for the next year's Deyata Kirula national exhibition which will be held along with the National Independence Day on Feb 4th. The construction works relating to the 2013 Deyata Kirula of exhibition commenced yesterday under the guidance of MP Namal Rajapaksa. Secretary of the exhibition organizing more..

We are on top of a volcano, the UNP warns

July 16 (NF) UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella states that the govt cannot survive for long on loans. He made this observation during the opening of a UNP branch office in Kandy, where several relief items were also distributed by the MP. ’This government is keeping the country afloat by obtaining loans every six months. They are looking for money everywhere. They are even trying to plunder the billions in the EPF. They tried to use this money for their projects. more..

'Govt. profiting under the guise of dengue eradication'

July 16 (AD) The JVP today accused the govt of profiting by fining the public under the guise of eradicating dengue. While accepting that the people of the country do have a responsibility in eradicating dengue mosquitoes, Tilvin Silva however said that what the govt should do is make the public aware of that responsibility and gain their contribution for the cause. Instead of doing that the govt is currently imposing another fine on the masses, more..

TNA to accommodate Muslim candidates

July 16 (DM) In what appeared to be a new political dimension, the TNA, the largest Tamil party, has decided to accommodate Muslim candidates on board for the election to the Eastern Provincial Council, party officials said yesterday. Disillusioned by the decision of SLMC to team up with the ruling UPFA, some Muslim activists have now decided to join hands with the TNA to form a strong lobby against the govt. more..

22 Independent groups have submitted deposits for the Elections

July 16 (GDI) The Additional Commissioner of Elections R.M.A.L. Ratnayake said that already 22 independent groups have submitted their deposits for the North Central, Sabaragamuwa and Eastern Provincial Council Elections. He said that the date of elections will be announced after closing the acceptance of nominations. Internal party sources from the main political parties said that their nomination lists are almost being finalized more..

Man arrested for assaulting Retd SSP, stealing gold ring

July 16 (AD) A retired Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) was assaulted and his gold ring stolen in the Pitipana area in Homagama at around 12 noon today. The suspect was however arrested and the ring recovered following a special operation carried out by the police, acting swiftly over incident. Police said that the suspect is a ‘drug addict’ and that, at the time of the arrest, 5 warrants had been issued for his arrest. more..

Cricket contracts killed again

July 16 (DM) Sri Lanka’s cricketers will not sign their central contracts or Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) contracts as Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) officials have gone back on their word and want the players to take further cutbacks on their pay, Sri Lanka Cricketers’ Association (SLCA) told “Daily Mirror”. SLC Executive Committee which met last Thursday, refused the settlement reached by SLC officials with cricketers and demanded further more..

Isuru Udana in Sri Lanka squad for India ODIs

July 16 (CI) Isuru Udana, the left-arm fast bowler, has been picked in Sri Lanka's 15-man squad for the five ODIs against India, which begins on July 21. Udana, 24, has played six Twenty20s for Sri Lanka, but is yet to debut in one-dayers. Batsman Chamara Kapugedera, who last played for Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup in March, has made a comeback. Left-arm spinner Rangana Herath, who was rested for the final three ODIs against Pakistan, is also back in the squad. more..

Sri Lanka shares up in cautious trade on interest rate outlook

July 16 (Reuters) Stock market rose on Monday in low-volume trading with many investors cautious over rising short-term interest rates. The Colombo Stock Exchange main index rose 0.26 percent or 12.58 points to 4,880.10. "Until there are any signs of interest rates coming down, the market will be very quite with long term investors picking up select shares here and there," a stockbroker said. Despite the central bank leaving key policy rates unchanged for the third straight month more..

Jayalalithaa flays Centre on training to Sri Lankan defence personnel

July 16 (PTI) Launching a scathing attack on the Centre for its “callous and adamant attitude” in training Sri Lankan defence personnel in India, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Monday demanded that New Delhi desist from such acts and that they be sent back to their county immediately. “The people of Tamil Nadu are frustrated and outraged by this callous and adamant attitude of the Govt of India in persistently more..

Sri Lanka seen at centre of new shift in maritime industry

July 16 (LBO) Sri Lanka is at the centre of the "next great shift" in the shipping and ship building industry that is underway, the head of the world's largest classification society said. The island's location, big port construction projects and plans to expand its hub role, makes it well-placed to emerge as a new maritime centre like Singapore and Dubai, said Noboru Ueda, chairman and president of ClassNK. The Tokyo-based ship classification society Nippon Kaiji Kyokai, better known as ClassNK, more..

Minister refutes reports

July 16 (PTI) The Tamil Nadu govt today denied media reports that fishermen from Rameswaram had been chased away by Sri Lankan Navy personnel by firing in the air and damaging their fishing nets and other equipments. In a statement here, Fisheries Minister K A Jeyapaul said the reports were published without verifying the facts. The reports were far from truth and were aimed at creating panic in the minds of the people, he added. The Minister said soon after hearing more..

Sri Lanka Debrief News - 16.07.2012