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Sri Lanka troops accused of jail 'massacre'

Nov 11 (AFP) Sri Lanka's main opposition party Sunday demanded an independent inquiry into a prison riot that left 27 convicts dead, alleging many were shot by security forces in a cold-blooded "massacre". The UNP called for a parliamentary investigation into the riot that erupted on Friday evening at the maximum-security Welikada prison in the capital Colombo. "This is nothing but a massacre," UNP spokesman Mangala Samaraweera told AFP. more..

International Lions Club sought porn website Ban

Nov 11 (SL) The International Lions club had sought the ban on 51 pornographic local websites, the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA) said. An NCPA official said that a letter seeking the ban had been sent to President Mahinda Rajapaksa while a copy was sent to the NCPA. The NCPA had, two weeks ago, filed documents in the Juvenile Court in Battaramulla seeking a ban on the 51 pornographic websites. The Court had then sought the advice of the Attorney General over the ban on more..

Teenage Lankan journalist covers US Presidential election

Nov 11 (Island) Sri Lankan born Noreyana Fernando, a 19-year-old student of Ithaca College, New York, was among the media corps before the White House to cover the United States Presidential Elections last week. Noreyana’s live broadcasts were relayed over New York’s WICB FM on election night and the morning after. Her confidence talent and capability brought her to the gates of the White House in a short spell in life - in her teenage years. She is a student of the Medical Sciences at more..

Govt. mum over billions owed in hedging deal gone wrong

Nov 11 (ST) Authorities are tight-lipped as the Govt tries to renegotiate billions of rupees in fines owed to foreign banks over the ‘illegal’ hedging deal. “Why do we have to pay, we don’t have to pay a cent, we are appealing the case,” Petroleum Industries Minister Susil Premajayantha said regarding billions of rupees owed to foreign banks over the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) hedging deal. Earlier this more..

Lankans injured in brawl with Indians in Kuwait

Nov 11 (ATO) Two Indian expatriates were arrested recently due to a quarrel that occurred between 15 Indian expatriates and 2 Sri Lankan expatriates in Mangaf. Reportedly, while the two Sri Lankan expatriates were in a commercial complex in Mangaf, an Indian expatriate accompanied with 14 of his friends stopped them. An intense argument between them developed into a physical fight when an Indian expatriate punched a Sri Lankan on the face. When an eyewitness informed more..

Cobalt 60 to control Malaria mosquito

Nov 11 (CT) The Anti-Malaria Campaign has identified a new method based on atomic technology, to curb the breeding of the malaria mosquito. The new method involves the use of Cobalt 60 radiation, according to the head of the Anti-Malaria Campaign, Dr. Sarath Deniyaya. He said, the new method can be ideal for the eradication of the malaria mosquito in the island. “We have been carrying out experiments for the past 10-12 years on controlling the mosquito and 80% of the more..

Tamil businessman killed by a ‘friend’

Nov 11 (LB) Arelative of TNA Wanni district MP Selvam Adaikalanathan, who disappeared on Oct 30 in Colombo, while the UNHRC sessions were on in Geneva, has been murdered by a business friend who robed 3 million from the victim, police investigations have revealed. The victim has been identified as Sinnathurai Igneswaran, a gold broker. Igneswaran, a resident of Kotahena, had gone to Sea Street to attend more..

Middling ability, maximum impact

Nov 11 (CI) Just as history is often told by the victors, whom it remembers better, the history of cricket is dominated by the outrageously talented. A handful of champions are immortalised, while a plethora of middling others fade quickly from the memory. It is an understandable, natural human phenomenon - for why retain the unmemorable? For the likes of Nuwan Kulasekara and Jeevan Mendis, perhaps this is an unfair practice. Neither man can be said to possess any great ability, more..

The sorry state of the Dehiwela Zoo

Nov 11 (ST) Facilities offered to the hundreds of thousands visiting the Zoological Gardens in Dehiwala are as wretched as the living conditions of animals and other species in its precints. Despite authorities making millions in revenue from entrance tickets, facilities offered to visitors borders on zero. Visitors to the zoo have no proper eating outlet. Other essential facilities such as a source of clean drinking have been reduced to a trickle by way of wayside taps. more..

Mathiasz slicers through sports hypocrisy

Nov 11 (ST) Nishantha Fernando’s hopes that God will direct him in the correct path and put an end to his long-standing miseries finally came true last weekend. Fernando who went through so much of agony without proper employment during the past two years made justice to his efforts and commitment by winning the World Men’s Singles Championship at the 6th Carrom World Cup held in Colombo. Justifying his efforts was Langley more..

Rs. 10 million damage to prison building

Nov 11 (CT) The damage wrecked to the prison buildings by the inmates of the Welikada prison who led the revolt last Friday has been estimated at more than Rs. 10 million, the Commissioner General of Prisons, P.W. Kodippili said. He said the kitchens and the lobby area have been destroyed. Out of the ten inmates who escaped, six were arrested by the police Special Task Force. The Borella police said that they have been remanded till the 21st. The headquarters the post mortems of more..

Villagers clash with police: 9 hospitalised, 4 policemen interdicted

Nov 11 (DM) Police said at least six residents and four policemen were injured following a clash between police and people living in the Yahalkale Estate in Moragahahena, Horana last night. Earlier that evening following information received, the Moragahahena police arrested a man from the Yahalkale estate over the alleged sexual assault of a six-year-old boy. Later that evening police had entered the area again following information on receipt of information regarding more..

'Condemn idiotic decisions of the govt that plays with human lives'

Nov 11 (LT) The idiotic decision taken by the govt to deploy STF troops to inspect Welikada prison should be condemned, the govt has treated human lives with utter simplicity which is the mentality of the govt states the JVP issuing a media statement regarding the incident that occurred in Welikada prison. The complete text: The media has reported that the number of prisoners who died in the clash that occurred in Welikada more..

Russel Arnold responds to questions from fans

Nov 11 (IC) Q: With several Test matches being postponed by SLC, Sri Lanka will play very few Test matches in the near future. The careers of players who are only in the Test squad, like Prasanna Jayawardene and Chanaka Welegedera, are going to be seriously affected. What is your view on this? A: It is going to hurt them in many aspects. At the end of the day, playing cricket is their job. And when you are labelled a Test player, the opportunities with the T20 leagues don’t come your way either. more..

Sri Lankan heads new Four Seasons Hotel in Beijing

Nov 11 (Island) Sanjiv Hulugalle, a Sri Lankan, is the General Manager of the new Four Seasons Hotel opened in Beijing last week. Described as "a new temple of modernity and style," the hotel is located in the Liangmahe area of the Central Business District in Beijing close to the Third Diplomatic Precinct amid Beijing’s vibrant cultural scene. "We are so delighted to share the new Four Seasons Hotel Beijing with travelers and residents of the city," Hulugalle said when the hotel opened its doors. more..

This budget is like an empty barrel – JVP

Nov 11 (LT) This budget is like an empty barrel that gives out a big noise when tapped on it but contains nothing said the General Secretary of the JVP Tilvin Silva adding only those with black money and racketeers have been given benefits from it. He said, “Employees of the state, private and estate sectors who have been tormented by the government expected at least some relief from the budget. Also, the working masses were more..

Mystery surrounds beautician’s death

Nov 11 (NS) An attractive beautician in Bandaragama found dead inside her home hanging in her bedroom last Tuesday was identified by the Police as Nissansala Upamali. The deceased was a mother of a child and her husband had been employed in Polonnaruwa. She had been living with her child at the Bandaragama home. Nissansala had SMS her husband stating she was planning to go overseas. The next day when her sister had visited her, the house had been locked. more..

Former SL first-class batsman Bernard Perera dies

Nov 11 (CI) Bernard Perera, the former Sri Lanka first-class cricketer and national women's team coach, has died aged 56 in a hospital in Peradeniya, Kandy, on Friday, where he had been receiving treatment the past fortnight. Perera had an attack of hepatitis two years ago and following recovery he continued to be a provincial coach. A right-handed middle-order batsman and offspinner, Perera was a brilliant cover fieldsman and looked destined for higher honours following an outstanding more..

Sri Lanka cigarette labeling put off till March 2013

Nov 11 (LBO) Health ministry has put off till March 2013, graphic labeling designed to educate consumers on the cancer and heart disease causing effects of cigarette smoke. Sri Lanka's Ceylon Tobaccco Company, a unit of British American Tobacco, went to courts against the new rules which gave three months for the firm to comply. The firm said in a stock exchange filing that after initially delaying the implementation till the next more..

Resignation not valid: SF

Nov 11 (DM) DNA Leader Sarath Fonseka had officially informed DNA MPs Arjuna Ranatunga and Tiran Alles that their resignation from the Democratic Party was not valid as such a party had not been registered yet. In his letters to the two MPs, the former Army Commander said he was shocked to see the resignation letters of the two MPs. Mr. Fonskea had said the latter was appointed as a national list MP through the mandate given to DNA. “They are watchful of the next more..

UNP-JVP working together: Ranil

Nov 11 (DM) The UNP was gradually building rapport with the JVP and would work together whenever a need arises, UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said today. Mr. Wickremsinghe who responded to a question raised by the journalists as to whether the joint opposition group ‘Vipakshaye Virodaya’ intended to invite other opposition political parties to the fold, said it was only the JVP which had not joined the opposition group. He said the UNP was working closely more..

Police defend STF raid

Nov 11 (NS) Dismissing allegations that Special Task Force (STF) personnel stormed the prisons at Welikada in an arbitrary manner last Friday, Police Spokesperson, SSP, Prishantha Jayakody claimed the STF had been invited by prison authorities to conduct a surprise raid.Contrary to this claim, there were arguments in many quarters that the STF should have obtained a court order prior to conducting such a raid. “In my view, more..

Carol wins award for Health Journalism

Nov 11 (NS) The Nation journalist, Senior Feature Writer, Carol Aloysius specialized on health related subjects for more than three decades won two awards for Excellence in Health Journalism from the Sri Lanka Medical Association on Friday. The ceremony presided over by SLMA President, Dr Vajira Dissanayake coincided with the inauguration of the foundation sessions of the Sri Lanka Medical Association - the oldest medical association in the country. It was held at more..

Providing jobs in the State sector

Nov 11 (CT) The number of employees in the public sector has increased from 800,000 to 1.4 million, while 40,000 graduates have been absorbed into the sector since President Mahinda Rajapaksa came into power in 2005, Minister Wimal Weerawansa said. He was addressing an event at the Kaduwela Divisional Secretariat, recently, where appointment letters were handed over to graduates. He said 16,000 graduates could be absorbed into the public sector with the implementation of more..

Young couple hacked in Kahawatte

Nov 11 (DM) A husband and wife in their twenties were seriously injured after they were hacked by unidentified men last night in Dimbulwala, Kahawatte. The couple was sleeping at the time of the incident with their five-year-old son. The wife had seen a shadow and when she screamed her husband had attempted to catch the suspect. The suspect had then slashed the 28-year-old Amarasiri and his 27-year-old wife Dilhani more..

No World Cup place, No reason to cry

Nov 12 (SL) A sense of regret ensuing the national rugby team’s failure to book a place in next year’s Sevens World Cup is inescapable. To clinch one of three slots set aside for Asia in the world competition, in Moscow next June, was, of course, a distant prospect, butas things turned out, qualification eluded us by a whisker. Hong Kong and Japan were as good as inked beforehand as two qualifiers in Asia’s list of three. So, the essence of the two-day Asian qualifier, more..

On constitutional Rights

Nov 12 (SL) Minister of Justice: What is possible within the powers of Parliament has been carried out. You cannot deny Parliament’s right to bring such a motion. It is in accordance with the determination of the Supreme Court that the Bill could be enacted according to what the govt’s intention is. It might also be a referendum as they already said; not included is the clause that entails the need for a referendum to get the Bill passed with a two-thirds majority. more..

'Sri Lanka has countered HR allegations'

Nov 12 (SO) JHU frontliner Prabath Udaya Gammanpila who is a Minister in the Western Provincial Council expressed his views as party legal advisor on a number of current issues, and the parliamentary motion to impeach Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake. He also spoke about his visit to take part in the 16th Session of the UN as member of the Govt delegation led by Minister Prof.G.L.Pieris where they were more..

Carrying the ‘cross’ on her shoulder

Nov 12 (DBS) In the domain of liberal democracy a motion to impeach a judge of the Supreme Court is a serious matter. That is permissible only if either there is suspicion of insanity or some problem akin to it. Analysis of any impeachments of any judge in the post modern world show that whole intelligentsia in that country and in related countries were participant in one way or the other in the judgment. It was a public, transparent affair where intimidation, political pressure and discrimination more..

Export strategies, constraints and successes

Nov 12 (ST) The previous two columns discussed the preconditions and economic policy imperatives required to generate robust export development. Good governance, rule of law, law and order and guarantee of property rights were among the preconditions required to encourage exports. The economic imperatives vital for sustained export growth were sound macroeconomic policies such as a low fiscal deficit, keeping down inflation, adopting a flexible and realistic exchange rate policy, more..

Ex-Sri Lankan Tigers swap bombs for bras

Nov 12 (DBS) Hundreds of former Tamil Tigers, the defeated Sri Lankan rebel army, are moving into a peaceful trade, swapping a history of bombs and guns for bras and football shirts. In a sign of long-awaited economic reconstruction following the brutal conclusion in 2009 of the nation’s 23-year civil war, one of the biggest suppliers to Victoria’s Secret is training the former Tigers to work in the first big garment more..

Yearning for my old, fear-free, democratic Sri Lanka

Nov 12 (LG) Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, our Chief Justice, is being threatened with impeachment. I got to know her personally when I was organizing an Ethics Seminar for SLAAS in 2003. I was looking for someone who could speak with authority on Human Rights in Education. Several people encouraged her name and told me that I would be lucky if she agreed. To my pleasant surprise, she readily agreed and called me to her chambers at the Supreme Court. more..

Choksy, I was shocked and amused on your 'Caesar’s wife'

Nov 12 (CT) Mr. K.N. Choksy, I was shocked and amused on your views titled ‘Mechanism and Process for the Impeachment of the Chief Justice’ / ‘Making the Judiciary Accountable’, in the media – and the duplicity of your comment – ‘There is an accountability process in every sphere of public service in its broad sense’, and that Judges must be like “Caesar’s wife” i.e. beyond any suspicion whatsoever’. It would appear that you have suddenly woken, oblivious of your own deeds: more..

'Hope this crisis will bring about changes for the better'

Nov 12 (SL) TNA MP M.A. Sumanthiran says the impeachment motion against Chief Justice Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake according to a governing party MP’s statement indicates that if the Govt of the day does not like a particular judgment delivered by a judge, they can impeach that judge. Referring to the balance of power in the current system, he said, “Here the legislature is totally controlled by the Executive, which now more..

Budget draws no cheers, no jeers; SC rulings check Govt.

Nov 12 (ST) The past week was hectic for Parliament by all accounts. In addition to the presentation of the annual Budget by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Thursday, the Govt took the first step towards removing Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake from office by placing on the Order Paper of Parliament the charges levelled against her. As the legislative process to remove the Chief Justice began, three Supreme Court determinations sent to Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa on more..

‘Trial of the Chief Justice’ – By Kangaroo court?

Nov 12 (CT) A senior govt source is reported to have stated on 08.11.2012 that “The PSC will work out the modalities for the sittings. It will only allow a single counsel to accompany the Chief Justice and would allow witnesses or documents to be called only with the consent of a majority of members,” and also that “the govt had no intention of allowing representatives of the International Bar Association, International Judges’ Association and Commonwealth Bar Association and more..

Lack of proactive approach to BOP issue takes toll on fiscal performance

Nov 12 (Island) Failing to proactively counter a balance of payments problem last year has taken its toll on the govt’s fiscal performance, leading to pressures on macroeconomic stability and more burdens on the people. As the govt unveiled ambitious revenue targets for 2013 resulting in a lower budget deficit in terms of GDP, its fiscal performance for the first eight months of this year is not convincing with the budget deficit more..

Editorial: Guard the guards!

Nov 12 (Island) What we witnessed in Colombo on Friday had all the trappings of the final battle of Eelam War IV at Nandikadal on May 18, 2009. Thousands of armed, hardcore criminals took over the Welikada maximum security prison. They seized one of the armouries and started shooting indiscriminately, forcing the crack commandos to swing into action. The battle proper lasted less than one hour and the situation was brought under control before the armed criminals knew what more..

Friend turns killer to rob gold

Nov 12 (SO) The abduction and disappearance of a gold broker from Sea Street of Colombo 14 last Saturday sent shock waves among the wealthy merchants in the area. Most of them were under the impression that a group of people who had arrived in a van whisked him away to a secret location where he is being kept in solitary confinement to extort ransom money from his family. The abduction generated so much of fear and panic among the gold merchants of Sea Street that they more..

President declared open the 3rd Abimansala

Nov 12 (DN) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said his govt will do its utmost to ensure the well-being of War Heroes and their families. “Our War Heroes fought fearlessly to secure the Motherland and leave a country for all to live in peace and without fear,” he said at the opening of the third Abimansala in Kamburupitiya on Saturday. “We have routed the enemy and the war against terror is over. But, we have not completed more..