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The country has reached a decisive point..., says Prof. Amarasekera

July 20 (NF) The Federation of National Organisations states that the country is now facing a time that is more decisive than the time during the war. Convenor of the Federation Professor Gunadasa Amarasekera made this statement while participating in a ceremony in Colombo. Several representatives participated in the event that was titled Let us not allow a new Eelam plan. "This trap called the 13th Amendment was set up by India. Many people came to Sri Lanka for this. more..

Tamils: why we get on the boats

July 20 (SMH) ON A remote stretch of Sri Lanka's west coast lies the village that wants to come to Australia. The homes here are built alike, low and squat, their thatched roofs tightly tied down against the monsoon's rains and wind. And from almost every one, someone has left for Australia. Some reach Christmas Island, phoning home to say they're safe. Others are caught before they can board a boat, or have their vessel stopped and turned around by Sri Lankan navy ships. more..

'Live in tents; eat only one meal a day but drive along the carpeted roads'

July 20 (LT) The govt that tells the masses to “Live in tents; eat only one meal a day but drive along the carpeted roads” is widening its political power project in a manner that leads to suspicion among Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim communities says Member of the Central committee of the JVP Bimal Rathnayake. Hesaid several special programmes to create unity among Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim communities would be launched on July 23rd – the ‘Day of Camaraderie.’ more..

Sri Lanka might lose the peace dividend

July 20 (EAR) Three years ago when the war was over in Sri Lanka and the LTTE was defeated, this writer had observed in a discussion with a Sri Lankan diplomat that winning the war was the relatively easy part; the more difficult part – of reconciliation and winning the peace had now begun. If this was not done well and quickly enough, the situation could deteriorate just as easily and may be even worse with repercussions beyond Sri Lanka. Fears in New Delhi are precisely these. more..

Museum robbery suspect’s profile released by CID

July 20 (SM) The CID have released a profile of the chief suspect connected with the recent Colombo Museum robbery. He is said to be 5ft 06 inches in height, with slightly protruding teeth, and hairy hands, and pimples on his face, according to the police media relations unit. If any information of the suspect is available, please call the following police HQ numbers- 011 2422 176 or 011 232 0141. The identity of the informant will more..

It will hurt like hell!

July 21 (NS) “An unrealistic perception of life is the basis of fear” an Indian Guru says. “People are not willing to live; people are not willing to die. That is their whole predicament right now. The fear is simply because you are not living in life; you are living in your mind. Your fear is always about what’s going to happen next. Meaning, your fear is always about that which does not exist. If your fear is about the non-existent, then your fear is imaginary. If you’re suffering the non-existential, more..

Memories of a village, voiced from the heart

July 21 (NS) The romantic ideal of an unspoilt village, pristine and preserved in the olden ways is fast becoming a nostalgic allusion in an era where a generation gap is becoming more and more undeniably pronounced; and in that pronouncement becoming almost insolent in expunging the village of yesteryear from the reality of tomorrow. The book Gamen Upan Katha (Stories born from the village) by Udayasiri Wickremaratne is a monument of sorts crafted by a man treasuring the life he knew more..

Fraudulent ‘LTTE terrorist diaspora’ must be exposed through extensive campaign

July 21 (DBS) There is so much talk of this Diaspora in Sri Lanka. Diaspora did this. Diaspora did that, and so on. However, I am yet to see any article which describes what the Diaspora is. In Sri Lanka the word Diaspora is used to refer to the Tamil Diaspora which is pro LTTE terrorists or LTTE terror supporters. Other democratic and independent people of Tamil origin, Sinhalese, Muslims, Malays and Burghers are not referred to as the more..

Growing hostility in Sri Lanka: India’s new challenge

July 21 (DM) There is ample evidence that New Delhi’s ambitions of becoming a global power has met with fresh challenges in its neighbourhood. In recent times, Sri Lanka has radiated unnerving resentment at India’s attempts to secure the rights of the Tamil civilian population, victims of the Eelam war that vanquished the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). At one level, New Delhi is building pressure on Colombo not to take the bilateral relations for granted. more..

Govt must tell truth about Petroleum Prices to the People

July 21 (DBS) You open the morning paper on the last working day in each month. You see a notice from the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), explaining the key features of international petroleum price movements within the month. Then you see a table showing the calculation of petroleum prices and the allowed maximum selling prices for the next month. If the notice says prices are to go up on the 1st of next month, if you like, run to the filling station. If the prices are to go down, relax. more..

‘I represent the third generation of politicians of the Rajapaksas’

July 21 (DBS) Distinguished Invitees, Friends: 1. It’s a pleasure for me to participate in this prestigious India Today Conclave. Thank you for giving me the honour of being a part of this event. 2. Much has been spoken at this Conclave and elsewhere about the Asian Century. Policymakers, academics, the media and experts in their respective fields continue to dwell at length on whether the 21st century will be dominated more..

Telecom chairman used a banned ‘filthy’ website to defend Gota

July 21 (CT) Chairman of the Sri Lanka Telecom and brother of the Transport Minister, Nimal Welgama’s news paper The Sunday Island ironically quotes a banned website to defend Sectary to the Ministry of difence Gotabhaya Rajapaka. Lanka Enews is banned in Sri Lanka and Sri Lankan government branded it as a malicious, defamatory and raw filth and stories defamatory to the characters of certain people. It is well known fact that since Frederica Jansz published famous more..

The impunity of powerful individuals and ‘filthy websites’

July 21 (CT) ITN’s website on Thursday featured a story on the caring side of government, if this wasn’t already evident to citizens. It noted, “There have been continuous complaints from the general public about certain websites publishing malicious, defamatory and row (sic) filth and stories defamatory to the characters of certain people. Therefore, it has become necessary to protect the dignity of the general public being victimized by these filthy websites”. more..

Eastern Provincial elections and The SLMC

July 21 (DBS) The advent of elections to the Eastern Provincial Council has caused the SLMC to come under the media spotlight during the past week. There was much interest and speculation over the course of action to be adopted (or not adopted) by the premier political party of the Sri Lankan Muslim people. Since the Tamil-speaking Muslims are now the single largest ethnic group in the sprawling Eastern Province, the voting pattern of the ethno-religious community would more..

Abuse, intimidation, violence and the Kalama Sutta

July 21 (Island) The first quote has been attributed to Francois-Marie Arouet (who wrote under the pen name Voltaire) as a classic affirmation of one of the pillars of democracy – the right to freedom of expression. Voltaire was one of the leading figures of the French Enlightenment in pre-revolutionary France and emerged as one of the stoutest defenders of civil liberties. He would not compromise on what he believed to be right. This was of course not acceptable to the corrupt and more..

Three Musketeers redux

July 21 (GV) Close to four decades ago, Richard Lester’s film, “Three Musketeers” was one I still remember enjoying. A different genre of comedy from that of politically inspired Chaplin films, “Three Musketeers” was swashbuckling, fun, simple and of course with bawdy humour at times. A few days ago, I had a mail in my “Inbox” that reminded me of those “three musketeers” for some odd reason. The title of that mail read, “Arumugam Thondaman, Mano Ganesan, Radha Krishnan join hands for Sabaragamuwa PC”. more..

Confident Sri Lankans ready to settle old scores against world champs

July 21 (Island) With most of their woes over, following successive series wins against Pakistan, a confident Sri Lankan outfit will take on world champions India, in the first One Day International of the five match series, here at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium, at Suriyawewa, today. The interest about the series is quite high after Sri Lanka’s series wins against Pakistan and with the team having an opportunity to more..

India's break ends, Sri Lanka's grind extends

July 21 (CI) Yet another India v Sri Lanka series is upon us. While the Indian team has racked up its frequent flyer miles with regular trips to Sri Lanka over the past few years, they start this series in an unfamiliar location. The stadium at Hambantota, a port town in southern Sri Lanka, was built for the World Cup and India haven't played a game there yet. The ground recently hosted a couple of Twenty20s during Pakistan's tour and, if those matches are anything to go by, more..

Editorial: Mannar - Disaster waiting to happen

July 21 (Island) Mannar is said to have returned to normal following Wednesday's violent protests, which left several police personnel injured and a court house and a police station damaged. But, let's not lull ourselves into a false sense of complacency. The situation is far from normal there if the frayed tempers and public resentment are any indication. Most of all, the dispute over a boat mooring beach which led to the clashes remains unsolved. more..

3D ත්žරිමාණ - පූජ්žය පක්ෂයට දේශපාලනය තහනම්?

War on terror revisited: Downsizing army

July 21 (Island) Had the then UNP leadership succeeded in downsizing the Army in the wake of the Norwegian-arranged Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) in Feb. 2002, the LTTE would have had an opportunity to overwhelm ground forces in a series of operations. In the absence of required ground strength, particularly the infantry, the SLA would have lost its capacity either to sustain a major offensive or to retain newly gained areas. On top of that, an enhanced UN peace keeping assignment, more..

Mahela defends Kapugedara selection

July 21 (Island) Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene yesterday defended the selection of middle order batsman Chamara Kapugedara to the 15 member national squad for the five match ODI series against India, that gets underway today, at Hambantota. Kapugedara was not part of the Sri Lankan squad that beat Pakistan 3-1, but on Monday, he was named in the national squad after making consecutive ducks for Sri Lanka ‘A’ in Harare in the tri-nation competition involving Zimbabwe ‘A’ more..

President tells errant stock traders: Don’t come to me again

July 21 (Island) President yesterday told representatives of the capital markets industry that he would no longer intervene and hold meetings with them and that any issue investors and brokers had with the regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), could be thrashed out with Treasury Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundera instead. The President convened a meeting with officials from the SEC, CSE, more..

Plaudits for Mannar Police

July 21 (DN) Mannar Police officers exercised utmost restraint in dispersing the crowd protesting opposite the Mannar magistrate’s courts. The Daily News learns the prompt action taken by the Police to disperse the crowd in a peaceful manner without using force, earned the praise of a wide cross section of the public. It is learnt that Mannar Superintendent of Police had advised protestors who acted in a violent manner in several places in the Mannar town, including the magistrate’s more..

GNOA warns of strike within two weeks

July 21 (Island) The Govt Nursing Officers’ Association (GNOA) warned that it would resort to trade union action if the govt did not grant the seven demands presented by it within two weeks. GNOA President Saman Ratnapriya said on Thursday that nursing promotions had not been given to Grade 2A and Grade 1 nurses for over a year as the health administrators were unable to conduct efficiency bar tests for over a year. Ratnapriya said that discussions had been held between more..

Lakshapathiarachchi no more

July 21 (Island) Leading radio and TV personality Nimal Lakshapathiarachchi, 57 died yesterday of a sudden heart attack. Nimal who first joined the SLBC in 1978 as a sound controller, quickly made his mark as an announcer, dramatist, news editor, and stage actor. He then served TNL radio and Maharaja Group, where he helped to launch the country’s first FM broadcasting service. Later he played a pioneering role in launching the Sirasa TV for the group. more..

CTU point finger at ZED

July 21 (CT) The school second term test question papers have been bungled up because of the irresponsibility of the Zonal Directors of Education, the Ceylon Teachers’ Union (CTU) charged. CTU General Secretary Joseph Stalin alleged there are a large number of issues in the second term test question papers, and that this is not the first time such a thing happened. Speaking to Ceylon Today, he said the entire responsibility for the mess up of the question papers falls on the Zonal Directors of Education. more..

Nuclear Early Warning System at naval bases

July 21 (DN) The Atomic Energy Authority (AEA) which is under the purview of the Power and Energy Ministry has taken measures to instal the Nuclear Disaster Early Warning System (NEWS) at naval bases. Two technical experts from the manufacturing Company SAPHYMO of Germany are already in Sri Lanka for assembling, testing, installation of the equipment and to train the operating staff. An agreement was signed by the AEA, Sri Lanka Navy and Disaster Management Ministry recently. more..

Indian High Commissioner visits Northern Province

July 21 (FT) High Commissioner of India Ashok K. Kantha is on a three-day visit to Northern Province from 20 to 22 July and participated in various events held in Jaffna on 20 July. Kantha attended the inaugural session of the Jaffna University International Research Conference (JUICE 2012) on ‘Capacity Development in a Post War Context’ organised by the University of Jaffna. In his address, Kantha traced the evolution of more..

Tight security during Ramadan

July 21 (CT) Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has assured the Muslim community that tight security will be provided to perform their religious rituals in the month of Ramadan without hindrance. This year, the Muslim community will not encounter any problems like what they faced a few years ago, where Muslims had to stay back at home without going to mosque to perform their night prayers, out of fear of the mysterious greese yaka. But this time nothing of the sort will happen. more..

Kandy Bar passes unanimous resolution to disarm politicians

July 21 (Island) A resolution calling for the disarming of politicians, in the country now free of war, was unanimously passed at a special emergency meeting of the Kandy Bar Association (KBA) chaired by the Senior Vice President and former president of the association President’s Counsel Wijaya Wickramaratne yesterday. The resolution was tabled by Wickramaratne from the chair at the largely attended meeting held at the Kandy District Court meeting hall. more..

CCTV in the fit on leads to killing: Police

July 21 (DM) The motive behind the killing of the owner of the textile shop owner Larick Rajapaksa (43) has been revealed as a dispute following a woman being photographed while she was in the fit on room in the shop by the close circuit TV camera. This businessman was murdered last Friday. Police said they had discovered two swords believed to have been used for killing and a slipper apparently of a suspect. more..

Maithri to TU officials: Guard your tongues

July 21 (Island) Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena recently warned all public servants to guard their tongues and not express baseless and meaningless statements. He was speaking at a ceremony held to hand over appointment letters to 100 paramedics at the National Blood Centre auditorium recently. If a public servant made a statement to either the electronic or print media that he had earned extra money other than his salary through devious means, that statement was enough for more..

'Vanni volunteer teachers will be made permanent'

July 21 (DN) Minister Douglas Devananda at a discussion with volunteer teachers of the Vanni district held at the Provincial Education, Cultural Affairs and Sports Ministry in Nallur recently, said that volunteer teachers with suitable qualifications to teach mathematics, science, English and Information Technology would be absorbed into the Ministry on contract basis as early as possible. He further stated that the request of volunteer teachers of the Vanni District more..

‘FUTA demands already met’

July 21 (DN) As the academics of the Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA) continue their strike to coerce the govt to get their remuneration demands, a current of adverse public opinion is manifesting around them, Higher Education Minister S B Dissanayake told the Daily News. Meanwhile, FUTA secretary Terrence Madujith said they are eagerly waiting to meet Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga to discuss their demand. more..

Public walk today to highlight child abuse

July 21 (Island) Law alone can do very little to prevent child abuse. Parents and the society should lend their support towards its eradication, the National Christian Council of Sri Lanka (NCCSL) said. Parents of teenage children, specially those aroind the age of 16, should be extremely observant of their behaviour, NCCSL General Secretary Rev. W.P. Ebenezer Joseph said. He said "When there is a strong family bond, room for such acts or for abusers to approach children are rare. more..

Salley creeps into B’caloa SLMC list

July 21 (Island) Former Colombo Municipal Councilor and Deputy Mayor Azath Salley said that he had pledged his support to the SLMC, following the party deciding to contest the Eastern Provincial Council alone. He said he would contest the Batticaloa District under the SLMC banner and Tree Symbol. When qasked whether an electoral alliance had been forged between the SLMC and the TNA, Salley said "definitely, whether one likes it or not, something would have more..

‘I was not even in Mannar at the time of incident'

July 21 (Island) Now that the Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has accused him of threatening Mannar District Judge and Magistrate, A. Judeson in the Mannar court premises last Wednesday, it should be able to prove that allegation, Minister Rishad Badhiutheen says. ACMC Leader Badhiutheen dared BASL President and UNP MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, PC to substantiate the allegations. The ACMC is a constituent of the ruling UPFA coalition. more..

AG informs SC: Body will be released to parents

July 21 (Island) The Attorney General yesterday filed a motion informing the Supreme Court that the body of Ganeshan Nimala Ruban would be released to his parents on July 23. Deputy Solicitor General Shavindra Fernando said in the motion that the Attorney General had directed the police to release the body subject to a Magisterial order. The body of the deceased is lying at the Ragama Hospital mortuary. Ruban, an inmate of the Vavuniya Prison, was transferred to the Mahara Prison on June 30, subsequent to prison riots at Vauniya. more..

IGP hands over Kahawatte killings probe to CID

July 21 (Island) Inspector General of Police N. K. Illangakoon had handed over the investigation into the latest double murder in Kahawatte to the CID, police spokesman SP Ajith Rohana said yesterday. The charred bodies of a mother and her daughter were found on Thursday morning (19) at Kotakethana, Kahawatte. Asked why the local police had been bypassed, SP Rohana said that it was considered a national issue with the escalating crime rate in the area. more..