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Was businessman killed due to blackmail, rape?

July 23 (Island) The main suspect in the killing of the owner of the textile establishment ‘Kapruka’, at Gampaha on July 13, for allegedly raping his sister, is evading arrest. The woman had been secretly filmed while trying on clothes in the fit-on room of the shop. Thereafter, the owner of the shop had allegedly blackmailed the woman into having sex with him, threatening to publicize the semi-naked photos of her. more..

Hussain U. Bahia in Sri Lanka

July 23 (DN) Professor Hussain U Bahia, Director of the Modified Asphalt Research Centre (MARC) the University of Visconsin, Madison USA, is in Sri Lanka and will deliver a Technical Presentation on the ‘USE of Polymer Modified Bitumen for Sri Lankan Roads” to be held in Colombo today. He arrived in Sri Lanka on an invitation from the University of Moratuwa, the programme is sponsored by the leading processed Bitumen manufacture in Sri Lanka, Bitumix (Private) Limited and more..

Addictive medicine sales to be restricted to SPC?

July 23 (Island) On a recommendation of the National Cosmetic Devices and Drug Control Authority (NCDDCA), the health authorities are contemplating restricting the sale of certain types of addictive medicines to the State Pharmaceutical Corporation. It has been found that private pharmacies are freely dispensing some cough syrup and pain killers to drug addicts. Some drug abusers were addicted cough syrup and pain killers which contained more..

Army searches for 50,000 deserters

July 23 (CT) Increasing allegations against army deserters and an escalating crime rate has prompted the Sri Lanka Army to launch an island wide search for some 50,000 army deserters. There have been media reports indicating army deserters are involved in many crimes that took place in the country in the recent past. According to police reports, allegations are levelled against army deserters saying they are leading gangs that are carrying out robberies in different parts of more..

The colourful drive to Hambantota

July 23 (CI) Slight trepidation as I queue up in immigration at Mumbai airport for my first international flight. The bureaucratic expression of the officer turns into a broad smile as I answer ‘cricket’ to his question ‘purpose of visit’. “You are the first person, at least in my queue, going for this Sri Lanka series,” he says. I settle into my window seat on the flight, and watch Juhu beach disappear quickly from sight. Didn’t know it would happen, but there is an air of finality to the moment the plane crosses the last lights of more..

Health Ministry recruits 326 Tamil speaking trainee nurses

July 23 (Island) In a bid to serve all state-run hospitals in the North and East, the Health Ministry has recruited 326 Tamil speaking young men and women and 20 Sinhala speaking women from the two provinces to be trained as nurses. They would be trained in the Batticaloa, Vavuniya and Jaffna Nursing Training Schools while the 20 Sinhala speaking women would be trained in the Anuradhapura Training School. Minister Maithripala Sirisena speaking at the handing over more..

President opens world’s first wooden sculpture Buddha Statue Museum

July 23 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa opened the world’s first wooden sculpture Buddha Statue Museum at Sri Vijayarama Maha Viharaya in Kaluwadumulla, Ambalangoda on Saturday. The additions to the temple include the main image house, encircling wall with a decorative gate way, 28 Buddha image house in sandalwood, exhibition hall of wooden Buddha images, golden bowl bodhigara, open preaching hall and more..

President recalls UNP’s treatment of judiciary

July 23 (Island) President Mahinda Rajapaksa, speaking after visiting the centenary exhibition of the Department of Agriculture, at Gannoruwa yesterday, pledged to protect and respect the dignity of the judiciary as the head of state and a lawyer by profession. President said that he regretted the pointing of fingers at a member of his Cabinet in connection with an alleged incident in a Court of law. However, he said that he had already told the CID to investigate the allegation. more..

Govt. trying to divide the Buddhist clergy: SF

July 23 (DM) This govt is attempting to divide Buddhist monks through inducements in an attempt re-write history. These views were expressed by former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka at a meeting held at the Kandy YMBA Hall today (22). He said that his endeavor was to form a strong, united opposition which would be honest and work according to its principles. We must build a self reliant nation instead of going down the same erroneous road as the present administration more..

Ranil’s invitation to join UNP a joke, says Fonseka

July 23 (Island) General Sarath Fonseka yesterday said that he would not join any political party, but would form his own, the Democratic Party and work towards forging a common opposition platform to defeat the govt. Speaking from Kandy, where he was attending some public events, Gen. Fonseka said that he was confident of obtaining the support of many opposed to the present UPFA govt and its dictatorial methods. more..

Welikada gallows tested with sand bag dummy

July 23 (Island) Prison authorities have tested the gallows at the Welikada Prison by using a bag of sand equal to the average weight of a human being. The gallows were working properly and only the hangman had to be appointed to be ready for re-implementing of the death sentence by hanging. The Prisons Department had received 25 applications upto yesterday to fill the seven vacancies of hangman and assistant hangman at the Welikada and Bogambara prisons, sources said. more..

New ‘Z-score’ marks released

July 23 (Island) The Examinations Department yesterday released the new Z–score for the GCE (A/L) exam 2011 following a Supreme Court order to calculate Z–score for the old and new syllabi separately. Students who had obtained poor results under the new Z–score, could apply to sit for this year’s A/L exam before July 27. The student who ranked first in the art stream according to the previous Z-score had lost her place according to new Z–score, but there had been no changes in the first ten places in the Bio Science,Mathematics and Commerce streams. more..

Power cuts from today due to breakdowns at Norochcholai

July 23 (Island) Despite the grandiose proclamations and repeated assurance, of Minister Champika Ranawaka, that power cuts will be a thing of the past, power cuts will commence in selected areas countrywide from today following the breakdowns in the Norochcholai and Kerawalapitiya power plants. The 300 MW Norochcholai coal power plant broke down at around 8.30 p.m. on Saturday and the CEB was waiting till the plant cooled down to ascertain what more..

UNP won’t name CM candidates for SGP and NCP

July 23 (Island) The UNP has decided not to name chief ministerial candidates for the Sabaragamuwa and North-Central Provinces. The party has named its national organiser Daya Gamage as the chief ministerial candidate for the Eastern Province and seven candidates had been appointed group leaders for the Sept 8 polls, Party’s Chairman, Gamini Jayawickrema Perera said. The UNP’s campaign for the three provinces consists of several phases. The last phase of several rallies, more..

Sri Lanka: The emerging centre point for IT – Lalith W

July 23 (Island) Sri Lanka was now gaining global recognition as a centre for delivering IT as well as an emerging knowledge services industry, said Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga at the "FutureGov SAARC Summit 2012" organized by FutureGov Asia Pacific magazine and Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) of Sri Lanka last week. He said: "This is the first occasion that Sri Lanka is holding a "FutureGov SAARC Summit and the third in a series of more..

Beware! The dentist behind the mask could be a quack

July 23 (ST) Visiting a dentist to fill or extract a tooth, or for a cleanup is a frightening experience for many, especially the surgical chair, staring into the glare of a bright beam of light, the surgical equipment and of course the masked man/woman. But, a mushrooming number of dental quacks is sure to turn the fearful experience into a nightmare. Recently, the Pugoda Additional Magistrate fined a husband and wife Rs. 80,000 more..

Jobs, Lies and Audio Tapes

July 23 (SL) Last week, Gamini Abeyratne alias Taxi Abey telephoned me from the United Kingdom. He was agitated and in more than three telephone conversations told me that Hudson Samarasinghe (Chairman of the SLBC) had telephoned him and asked, “if Frederica went with me to meet the President. I said I am in London and I’ll ask the President and say but I can’t tell anything at this moment.” A few days later on July 19, Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told a journalist more..

Mannar Mayhem; Minister rides roughshod over judiciary

July 23 (LB) The govt’s strongman in Mannar, Minister Rishad Bathiudeen is in the news for all the wrong reasons. Earlier, he was blamed for spearheading a policy that overtly favours his supporters while discriminating against local Tamils, in land allocation and doling out resettlement assistance. This time around, he had allegedly threatened the Mananar District Court Judge and Magistrate Anthony Pillai Judeson after more..

GMOA on the warpath again

July 23 (Island) The Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) is once again on the warpath. Its Executive Committee has unanimously decided to oppose moves to amend the National Medical Ordinance which, it claims, is being done to scrap the Bachelor of Surgery degree from the university medical degree course and to recognise the Malabe SAITM private medical college. GMOA Media Spokesman Dr. Navin de Soysa said that more..

'They not only unite but also fight to plunder'

July 23 (LT) The political parties that are within the govt are contesting the elections for the Eastern Provincial Council separately which shows that they unite to plunder and also fight to plunder the masses, the masses should comprehend this political maneuver properly and turn the provincial councils elections to an election that turns back the path taken by the present govt says the General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva. “We have ample evidence of the undemocratic election more..

'PC polls: 23 relatives of govt. politicians in the fray'

July 23 (Island) Minister Maithreepala Sirisena, had claimed that the kith and kin of the coalition politicians would not be given nominations to contest the forthcoming provincial council elections, but 23 relatives of the ruling party politicians were contesting on UPFA ticket, the JVP claimed. JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said that the majority of govt politicians’ relatives were contesting in the Kegalle District. more..

EC to meet political parties

July 23 (CT) Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya will meet representatives of all political parties on 1 August, particularly to iron out political differences and to spell out law and order and also to instruct candidates to restrict misusing former powers and to handover official vehicles. Prior to this meeting in Colombo, they would hold a meeting in Batticaloa, with the candidates as there were numerous allegations by candidates on their rivals. more..

'Independence of judiciary will be ensured'

July 23 (DN) It is the govt’s intention to uphold the independence of the judiciary, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday adding that his govt highly valued the independence of the judiciary and will work towards its protection. “We can’t allow the law to be mocked at. A country cannot be governed without the Rule of Law. ‘The govt is committed to protect the law to the maximum level” the President asserted. He was addressing the National Farmers’ Week exhibition more..

More Mi-17s for Sri Lanka

July 23 (DID) In mid-July 2012, Russia’s Rosoboronexport announced an order from Sri Lanka for another 14 Mi-171 helicopters, to be built at the Ulan-Ude plant. The SLAF started operating Mi-17s in 1993, and the current fleet of 13-18 machines equips No. 6 Helicopter Squadron at Anuradhapura, in north-central Sri Lanka. It’s part of a $300 million, 10-year loan to buy equipment for Sri Lanka’s military, which was signed during a 2012 state visit to Russia. more..

No uninformed power cuts, outage schedule to be issued today

July 23 (AD) The CEB stated that certain areas in the country had experienced power cuts without prior warning today, however it has now been stopped. It said that a special committee has been appointed to identify areas to impose power cuts and that the CEB is to issue the power cut schedule by this evening. All measures are underway to restore the two affected power stations while there will not be any uninformed more..

Editorial: The blinking flame of election violence

July 23 (DM) Whenever an election is included in the country’s agenda, the next thing one gets to read in papers is election violence or misuse of public properties. Lankadeepa quoted PAFFREL Executive Director Rohana Hettiarachchi revealing that ministers of the dissolved provincial councils have so far not handed over their official vehicles and they had been using them for personal and party purposes. He further requests all the politicians not to more..

Sri Lanka call up Nuwan Pradeep

July 23 (CI) Fast bowler Nuwan Pradeep has been called up to the Sri Lanka squad for the remainder of the one-day series against India, in place of the injured Nuwan Kulasekara. Pradeep has played three Tests, but is yet to debut in ODIs. Sri Lanka's chairman of selectors, Ashantha de Mel, said that Pradeep will join the team on Monday, after returning from Zimbabwe, where he had played in the tri-series involving Sri Lanka, South Africa and Zimbabwe's A teams. more..

Bridging the language divide in Sri Lanka

July 23 (IRIN) Enhancing practical efforts to uphold the language rights of millions of ethnic Tamil-speaking Sri Lankans could play a key role in the country’s long-term peace and reconciliation, say analysts and activists. "Language parity is one of the biggest challenges to Sri Lanka's peace and reconciliation efforts, and indeed its future. Without it, I doubt we will ever be able to move forward,” Wijedasa Rajapakshe,a human rights lawyer and writer on jurisprudence, told more..

Sri Lanka expands Cashew cultivation

July 23 (GDI) The Sri Lanka Cashew Corporation has expanded its cashew cultivation programmes in Anuradapura, Mannar, Vavuniya, Kilinochchi and Mullaithivu Districts. According to N.D. Warushawithana, the Regional Manager of the Cashew Corporation, the cashew cultivation in Anuradhapura District has been covering nearly 6,000 acres specially in Mahawilachchiya, Medawachchiya, Mihintale, Thantirimale and Oyamaduwa areas. more..

Sri Lanka stocks down 0.13 pct

July 23 (LBO) Stocks fell 0.13 percent Monday, with large cap stocks losing ground. The Colombo All Share Price Index fell 6.45 points to 4,881.77 and the S&P 20 Index of large cap stocks fell 0.24 percent to 2761.90. The day's turnover of 321 million rupees was dominated by index heavy John Keells Holdings with 111 million rupees and Central Finance with 78 million rupees. DFCC closed flat at 105.50 rupees. Dialog Axiata PLC, slipped 10 cents to close at 6.00 rupees. more..

FUTA says govt. has changed strategy

July 23 (DM) University academics yesterday charged that the govt had changed its strategy as there had been no communication to resolve their issues since the meeting they had with President’s Secretary Lalith Weeratunga two weeks ago. “I think they want us to strike till we are exhausted. That seems to be their strategy now. But we will continue with our strike action till we win our demands,” FUTA President Dr. Nirmal Dewasiri said. more..

India takes up arrest of TN fishermen with Sri Lanka

July 23 (PTI) India has taken up with authorities in Colombo the issue of arrest of 23 Tamil Nadu fishermen by Sri Lankan Navy when they were fishing near Katchatheevu in the Palk Straits yesterday, Ministry of External Affairs said here today. Consul from Consulate General of India in Jaffna is going to Mania since the fishermen would be produced before the Mannar Judicial Magistrate court, MEA sources said. “We are actively working on this. more..

Sri Lanka to hand over post-war reconciliation report to UN

July 23 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka will hand over its report on post-war reconciliation to the United Nations Monday as part of the Universal Periodic Review, an official said here. The Sri Lankan govt has compiled a report giving detailed progress on the post-war reconciliation and rehabilitation measures undertaken since 2009, which will include implementation of a key accountability report, Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said. He told media that the report, more..

IMF starts talks with Sri Lanka on a new loan

July 23 (Reuters) The IMF, which has just fully disbursed a $2.6 billion loan to Sri Lanka, said on Monday it has begun talking with authorities in Colombo about arranging a new credit called an extended fund facility. Last Friday, the IMF disbursed the last tranche of the existing loan - $415 million - following an assessment of the govt's policy reforms. Koshy Mathai, the IMF's resident representative in Sri Lanka, said there there has been a "very preliminary discussion" with the govt on a new facility. more..

The infinite boredom of India vs Sri Lanka

July 23 (FP) It must’ve been hard… to take yourself away from whatever you were doing and sitting down to watch India take on Sri Lanka in yet another one-day international. It must have been even harder to feign interest in the cricket. But it must have been hardest to try and make sense of what was happening on the field. It wasn’t that India didn’t bat well – Virender Sehwag and Virat Kohli set up a superb platform, Mahendra Singh Dhoni helicopter-flicked more..

Development assistance to Telipalai resettled families

July 23 (GDI) Development assistance were provided to enhance the living environment and livelihood of 1975 resettled families in Kollankalatty, Thanthaiselvapuram, Mavadipuram, Mavadipuram South villages in Tellipalai DS Division area with the participation of minister Basil Rajapaksa on Friday. At this occasion roofing sheets, sprayers, food packages, and cash were distributed among these families. Also Agriculture equipment and seeds were distributed among these more..

'No political patronage for criminals'

July 23 (PTI) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has defended the govt against allegations that political patronage to criminal elements had led to rising level of crime. Responding to increasing criticism that ruling party politicians and criminal elements had been given political patronage, Rajapaksa said such allegations were not true and police were doing their job in a free manner. "Attempts have been made to portray that political influence more..

'Day of Camaraderie' successfully held despite obstructions from govt.

July 23 (LT) It is reported that members of Socialist Youth Union (SYU) that travelled to Vavuniya from Anuradhapura to celebrate the 'Day of Camaraderie' today (23) were warmly welcomed in Vavuniya. The SYU members ‘Walked’ from the railway station across Vavuniya town and held a meeting at the Urban Council Grounds. Earlier the meeting was to be held in Vavuniya town but due to obstructions from eh police it had to be held at the UC grounds. more..

Vaiko slams Centre for ‘betrayal’ of fishermen

July 23 (AD) Slamming the Centre and Sri Lanka over the recent arrest of 23 fishermen, MDMK leader Vaiko today urged New Delhi to take immediate steps to secure their release. While there had been numerous incidents of alleged attacks and arrests of Tamil Nadu fishermen by the island nation’s Navy, “the Manmohan Singh (led) government has not condemned the Sri Lankan govt even once.” “The Centre’s failure to protect Tamil Nadu fishermen is a betrayal to not only more..

Sri Lanka Debrief News-23.07.2012