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Sri Lankan gov't to bring back fishermen arrested by India

May 7 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka's Fisheries Ministry said Monday that it was making arrangement to bring back six fishermen arrested by Indian coast guards for breaching the Indian maritime boarders. Ministry Secretary Damitha de Soyza said that the Sri Lankan govt through the ministry would get the fishermen released but it would take time depending on the state where they were taken into custody. It is reported that Indian coast guards arrested more..

Cold war over right to information draft bill

May 7 (SM) A cold war has erupted between opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and UNP MP Karu Jayasuriya over the right to information draft bill. Mr. Jayasuriya said a few days ago that he would table the draft bill to the House again soon. However, in a statement, the UNP said today chief govt whip John Amaratunga would be tabling the draft bill. The statement says, The chief opposition whip is due to take up with the speaker the right to information draft bill when parliament resumes sittings, more..

Sri Lankan maid 'burgled house after spraying inhabitants with drug'

May 7 (National) A maid sprayed a mysterious drug inside her employer’s house that made its inhabitants go to sleep shortly before she burgled the premises,. The maid has denied charges of theft and damaging property. The Dubai Criminal Court heard that R K, a 39-year-old Indian salesman, hired A P, a 31-year-old from Sri Lanka. On March 9, 2009, the woman’s first day at work, the salesman and his wife went out, leaving their child with his grandmother. more..

CPC rejects part of fuel consignment

May 7 (CT) A portion of Jet A -1 fuel oil from British Petroleum Co. in Singapore did not meet the specifications of the CPC. Accordingly, of the 20,000 Jet A-1 fuel imported 7,500 Mts were found to be slightly off specifications, the CPC said. As a result of this the Ceylon Petroleum Cooperation (CPC) has decided not to make use of this consignment of Jet A-1 for the supply to aircrafts and instead decided to use this stock as Kerosene. more..

Sailor kills female sailor and himself

May 7 (CG) A navy sailor committed suicide after killing his female colleague in Trincomalee this afternoon, a navy spokesman said. This was the second incident in a week and the third this year involving a Sri Lankan security force member killing his co-worker and then himself. Navy spokesman Kosala Warnakulasuriya said that the navy sailor had shot dead a female sailor over a personal dispute at the Trincomalee dockyard. “After killing the female sailor he then shot himself. more..

Balcony collapses injuring 23 in Kandy

May 7 (CG) A balcony has collapsed in Kandy yesterday injuring 23 people, the police media unit said this morning. The police said that the accident took place when a large crowd had gathered to participate at an event at the Sri Muthumari Amman Temple. Some of those who had gathered for the event had got on the balcony of an adjoining house. The balcony could not bear the load of the number of people who climbed it and it subsequently gave way and collapsed. more..

Clowns sans frontičres au Sri Lanka 2011

SLC to take maximum precautions against bookies in T20 WC

May 7 (PTI) Amid reports of bookies planning to target the Twenty20 Cricket World Cup in Sri Lanka later in the year, the Sri Lankan Cricket Board on Monday said that it would take "maximum precautions" to ensure that "unwanted elements" were not involved in the game. Reports in the media said that bookies could assemble in the island nation during the September 18 to October 7 Twenty20 World Cup to fix matches and to counter that the SLC have made elaborate plans. more..

Tanthirimale Buddha statue restored

May 7 (DM) The recently discovered Buddha Statue in the Tanthirimale sacred area has been restored to be conserved. At the time of discovery, the statue was damaged, probably by treasure hunters. The ceremony of unveiling the restored statue for worship was held on Vesak Poya day evening. The restoration of the statue was done under the supervision of the Archeological Department on guidance of the National Heritage Ministry. The restoration of the statue commenced following a request made by the Thanthirimale Raja Maha Vihara more..

791,620 mines cleared, 124 sq KM left for demining

May 7 (DM) A total of 791,620 mines have been cleared and destroyed by the Army Field Engineers and de- mining organisations in a land area of 1936 sq km by using mechanical and manual methods. Only an area of 124 sq km is left for de mining in Mulaitivu. Over 1500 soldiers and 29 flail machines have been deployed for these activities. These clearing operations were conducted in the Jaffna, Mannar, Kilinochchi, Mulaitivu, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Vavuniya, Polonnaruwa more..

Cricket tournament for Catholic youth in Anuradhapura

May 7 (AN) Almost 150 Catholic youths took part in the 'Christu Shanthi Challenging Cup,' a cricket tournament organised by the diocese of Anuradhapura (North Central Province). The goal was to enable youths from 13 parishes spread across an area of 10,726 sq km to get to know each other. The team from the parish of Alagollewa won the first prize, a trophy and 10,000 rupees (US$ 75). The second prize of 7,000 rupees (US$ 55) went to the parish of Habarana. more..

Sri Lanka Taj hotel hit by liability dollarization

May 7 (LBO) Profits of Taj Lanka Hotel Plc, a unit of India's Taj Hotels and Resorts Ltd, plunged 87 percent to just 6.7 million rupees in the March 2012 quarter due to exchange losses from a dollar loan. Taj Lanka's revenues rose 6 percent to 450 million rupees in the December quarter and gross profits rose 25 percent to 142 million rupees from a year earlier, but finance costs rose 400 to 66.5 million rupees. In the year to March 2012, revenues rose 19 percent more..

Sri Lankan Buddhists demand demolition of mosque

May 7 (PTI) Dozens of Buddhists led by monks joined a demonstration on Monday urging Sri Lanka's government to proceed with plans to dismantle a mosque located in a sacred Buddhist area. The protesters marched peacefully through Kalutara town, south of Colombo. Last month, thousands of Buddhist monks and lay supporters stormed the mosque in the central town of Dambulla, saying it was constructed illegally. more..

A-Z of Sri Lankan English: R is for rubber slippers

May 8 (GV) They’re called thongs in Australia, jandals in New Zealand, Hawaii chappals in India and Pakistan. According to Wikipedia, they’re known as slip-slops in South Africa, go-aheads in the South Pacific, japonkis in Poland, and vietnamkis in Russia. The standard term in the UK and the US is flip-flops. Here in Sri Lanka they’re most commonly referred to as rubber slippers; also bathroom slippers, and Bata slippers (or Batas). And some of us like to talk about more..

Democracy, good governance, human rights and the effective implementation of the LLRC report

May 8 (GV) Aung San Suu Kyi, the Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, 1991 in a contribution titled “Human development and human dignity” stated that “Respect for human dignity implies commitment to creating conditions under which individuals can develop a sense of self-worth and security. True dignity comes with an assurance of one’s ability to rise to the challenges of the human situation. Such assurance is unlikely to be fostered in people who have to live with more..

Mobs, Monks and the Problems of Political-Buddhism

May 8 (GV) It is always a curious and odd little matter, to witness how even Buddhists become so obsessively attached to ‘sacred’ lands and in protecting them, commit acts seemingly prompted by hatred, delusion and ill-will. Ideally, lands should not become ‘sacred’ for simple reasons. The Buddha, in attacking the rigid and unethical caste-system during his time, placed great stress on the importance of deeds or action. more..

The patriotic mighty, are they right?

May 8 (LB) The economic consequences of the decisions made by the Mahinda regime, to satisfy the international money lenders, are becoming intolerable. Apart from those who contribute to the Sinhala Buddhist ideology of the regime and those who are profiting by the regime’s excesses, the rest fight on a daily basis without much coordination, to cope with the rising cost of living. It is usual to see people buying one egg, half a loaf of bread, and 100gms of sugar; more..

Charles Taylor - no Lankan equivalency, but...

May 8 (LB) There is ample discussion in the international media re the conviction of former Liberian president Charles Taylor for war crimes, not to need additional comment from me except how the matter stands in relation to ‘alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sri Lanka’ (‘A-WC’ for short hereafter). This is the first such conviction of a head of state or former head of state at an international tribunal, though large numbers of Taylor’s military associates more..

18th May as a mockery of history

May 8 (DM) The third is 14th May, 1965, the day the JVP, the political party of the downtrodden masses of Sri Lanka, was founded. There is another event that is important to the people in Sri Lanka, may be to the whole world that took place in the month of May. On 18th May, 2009 the military front of separatism in Sri Lanka was defeated. The termination of the thirty year war that tortured and distressed the Sri Lankan sociopolitical body could have more..

A Buddhist Monk and child abuse in London

May 8 (Island) This is a personal journey, which has touched our lives deeply and thus I will not pretend that it is an unbiased account. I have changed the names of the persons involved to attempt to safeguard the little privacy that they have. In 2004, we purchased a home in a private gated compound in Winchmore Hill, North London. Our neighbour two doors next, was uncle Jine and aunty Serina, both Sri Lankans who had emigrated to the UK many decades ago. more..

The Out-of-doors So Significant in the Life of the Buddha

May 8 (Island) Every aspect, facet and fact of Prince Siddhartha Gautama’s life is different and so unique. This uniqueness continued with enhancement once he attained enlightenment and walked, preached and grew old as the Buddha. In the midst of this uniqueness is the fact that every major happening in his life took place out in the open, in gardens, forests and even just outside his several palaces and later kutis. "In 623 BC, on a full moon day of May – Vasanta-tide, more..

Policymakers and the votes that count

May 8 (ST) It’s like a huge tree covering a vast area in the woods. Though it grew big under favourable conditions it really has no planned solidity underfoot because it grew off a seed that fell on the surface. Sri Lankan cricket is quite alike. When the white sahib brought it to the country and indulged in it as a passtime the locals picked it up as if it was their own and it grew fast unplanned. There were other seeds also that were strewn around like more..

Editorial: Of jets and bottle lamps

May 8 (Island) Ours is a very considerate government whatever its critics may say. It may have jacked up bus and train fares compelling the ordinary people to use shank's pony, and sent the prices of motorcycles and three wheelers through the roof with hefty increases in import duties, but out of its concern and love for the poor, it has ensured that they will have aviation fuel in bottle lamps lighting their humble abodes. What a consolation! Another first for Sri Lanka! more..

Let’s locate ‘Dambulla’ on the world map of (in)tolerance

May 8 (NS) The controversy surrounding ‘sacred areas’ in Dambulla yielded a heady mix of the sacred and profane, powered predictably by ‘religious’ leaders/spokespersons. It also brought out of the woodworks the usual suspects in the time-honored vocation of bashing Buddhists and Sinhalese. That particularly selective commentariat has been waxing lyrical about Buddhist intolerance, Sinhala-Buddhist chauvinism, the sanctity of secularism and generally vilifying all more..

Connections | May 7, 2012

Investor confidence vital for attracting FDIs

May 8 (ST) The slow and inadequate foreign investment inflows into the country are a concern as FDI is vital to sustain a high trajectory of economic growth. Much foreign investment was expected after the end of the war in May 2009. Why have there not been substantial inflows of foreign investment in the post-conflict period? The answer is not difficult to find. The uncertain policy environment, the law and order situation, lack of reforms in labour legislation, more..

Woman in fashionable attire raises suspicion

May 8 (SO) It was on April 24 morning that Wellampitiya police station received a phone call from a woman that her aunt had not answered the telephone that morning and when she later visited her home at Wellampitiya she found the house locked up. She complained that something might have happened to her aunt and wanted the police to visit the house as she suspected foul play. When Wellampitiya police visited her home they found the body of Mrs. Wickremasinghe lying more..

Let’s go ‘see’ Vesak

May 8 (ST) With thousands of white-clad devotees observing sil at temples across the country on Vesak Day, the thrice-blessed poya which fell yesterday, the walkabouts to see the beautiful sights take place today. As Sri Lanka begins the commemoration of the 2601st Sambuddhatva Jayanthi, people of all ages and all religions will come out in their numbers to see the illuminations ranging from tiny kudus in humble homes to more elaborate kudus at shops or more..

Japan to provide technical know-how in fisheries

May 8 (DN) Japanese Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Michihiki Kano agreed to provide modern technological training for Sri Lankan fisheries industrialists, Minister Dr.Rajitha Senaratne said. He had made an official visit to Japan recently and met a number of prominent persons including cabinet ministers and Tuna King Kiyoshi Kiyomura. Minister Senaratne met Japanese Minister Kano at the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry in Japan, and more..

'SL workers most popular in Korean market'

May 8 (DN) The number of Sri Lankan’s migrating for jobs in South Korea has increased considerably in the first part of 2012 in comparison to last year, the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment(SLBFE) said. SLBFE chairman Amal Senalankadikara said that 1,527 workers had gone to Korea for jobs in the first four months of 2012, in comparison to 1,370 in the last year. Last year, 5,346 persons migrated for employment to Korea and this year the figure is expected to exceed 9,000. more..

'We will set up two more pvt. medical schools'

May 8 (Island) Outspoken Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake, who got into trouble even with the Supreme Court and was incarcerated for contempt of court says he is now a changed man at the age of sixty only interested in doing good things like attending to religious practices, but because of his tough stand the universities the hot beds of rebellion for decades are once again places of learning. Even in establishing private more..

One pair may win Olympic slot, but another may go to Olympics

May 8 (Island) They may earn berths for Sri Lanka to represent at the London Olympics at the forthcoming Continental Cup Beach Volleyball tournament, but irrespective of which pair earn the Olympic spot for the country beach volleyball players will have to face local trials to book their places. "Yes. They will have to face local trials irrespective of which pair earn the Olympic slot for the country," said Susil Ranasinghe, Secretary of the Volleyball Federation in reply to more..

Govt. revenue from tobacco intact; CTC earnings under attack

May 8 (FT) The Govt revenue from taxing tobacco has remained intact following hikes in taxes, whilst Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc (CTC) earnings have dipped in comparison to recent quarters. In the first quarter ended on 30 March 2012, Govt levies amounted to Rs. 15.29 billion, up by Rs. 1.2 billion from Rs. 14 billion a year earlier and marginally up from Rs. 15.11 billion from the fourth quarter of 2011. Excise revenue from tobacco formed the bulk with Rs. 12.99 billion more..

Sanctity of CSE hinges on NSB

May 8 (FT) The sanctity and credibility of the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) today hinges on the National Savings Bank (NSB) with analysts fearing failure to honour its recent purchase of The Finance Company Plc (TFC) shares can dealt the biggest blow to capital markets. As exclusively reported by the Daily FT last week, the bizarre turn of events following the purchase of a 13% stake in TFC for Rs. 390 million by NSB have sent shockwaves across the entire more..

Don’t target messenger, Sab CM tells politicians

May 8 (Island) Sabaragamuwa Chief Minister Maheepala Herath said that politicians must not pursue journalists and media institutions for exposing shortcomings or faults in the provincial administration. Addressing a gathering after laying the foundation stone for the construction of a new bridge at Ruwanwella, Bopeththa on May 4, CM Herath emphasised that the media had a pivotal role to play in rectifying shortcomings. He said that the work on the bridge wouldn’t more..

PHIs check dansal food

May 8 (CT) Public Health Inspectors have raided 6341 ‘Dansals’ during the festive season, in order to check the quality and standard of the food served to the public. The President of the Public Health Inspectors Association Upul Rohana stated that during their raids they had come across 196 Dansals that were serving food that were not in a satisfactory condition. “We issued instructions to 37 of these Dansalas to remove certain food items that we deemed unsuitable for human consumption. more..

Catholic Bishops’ Conference on reconciliation and peace-building

May 8 (Island) The Catholic Bishops’ Conference in Sri Lanka in a statement on reconciliation and peace-building in Sri Lanka much has been spoken in the recent past, both at the international and local levels, concerning our beloved Motherland, Sri Lanka. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Sri Lanka too feels duty bound to express its own views, hopes and fears on what appears to be the focus of more..

Three 14-yr-olds from leading school arrested for theft

May 8 (Island) Three students from a leading public school in Colombo were arrested by the Kollupitiya police over an alleged theft and they were bailed out after being produced before the Fort Magistrate’s Court on Saturday, police said. The students had stolen two phones from two shops in a famed shopping complex in Kollupitiya on two different days and the Kollupititya police had arrested the alleged school going thieves after an investigation. more..

Dy ministerial rewards for about dozen deserving cases

May 8 (Island) Several govt and allied MPs would be given deputy ministerial posts within the next couple of weeks, govt sources said. They said preference would be given to those who had held office in provincial ministries and who had polled the highest number of votes at the last general elections. Several leaders of parties, allied with the ruling party too would be given deputy ministerial portfolios. Several MPs who obtained the highest number of preferential more..

Vesak signifies Maithri, Amuthu Chinthana is taking revenge - UNP

May 8 (Island) The ‘Mahinda Chintana’ has transmogrified itself into the "Amuthu Chintanaya" during Vesak Week and was seeking revenge on the masses by heaping untold sufferings on them, the UNP said. Gayantha Karunathillake MP, said that the "Ever Grateful Mahinda Rajapaksa Regime", which had asked the people to tighten their belts until the war was over, was acting in a manner that befitted a person exacting revenge from more..