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Law Professors on impeachment: Process is constitutional

Nov 21 (DN) The procedure followed in the current impeachment of the Chief Justice is fully in accord with the present constitution although various distortions and misrepresentations are made by certain elements to mislead the country, Colombo University Prof Prathibha Mahanama Hewa said. He said the procedure for impeachment is clearly laid down in the Constitution and no international organisation or the UN can accuse the more..

Environmentalists seek meeting with wildlife chief

Nov 21 (Island) Environmental organisations have sought a discussion with the newly appointed Wildlife Chief regarding the decisions taken by the acting wildlife director during the last few months. Director Operations of the Department, H. D. Ratnayake was appointed Director General of the Wildlife Department recently. Environmental lawyer Jagath Gunawardane alleged that the acting wildlife Director General had violated many more..

Multipurpose Gamma Irradiation Facility (MGIF) to start in June

Nov 21 (DN) The Multipurpose Gamma Irradiation Facility (MGIF) of the Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Authority will be in operation in June 2013, said Multipurpose Gamma Irradiation Facility Center Senior Deputy Director Samantha Kulatunga. He said this facility will generate new industries and job opportunities, reduce import cost, ensure food security, reduce post harvest losses and increase foreign exchange earnings, etc. more..

Leadership training programme for new batch begins on Dec 27

Nov 21 (DN) The leadership training programme for the next batch of university entrants will commence on December 27, Higher Education Ministry Secretary Dr Sunil Jayantha Navaratne said. Arrangements are in place to hold these training sessions in 25 centres throughout the country with the participation of 26,721 students who qualified to enter university, he said. This year's leadership training programme will be held in more..

50% of school principals not qualified: CTSU

Nov 21 (CT) The Ceylon Teachers’ Union (CTSU) said that the process of appointing administrative posts within educational institutions in Sri Lanka had become grossly influenced by political agendas. “Approximately 50% of principals in schools are not qualified to hold such positions, and have been given such titles due to political influence,” General Secretary to the CTSU Mahinda Jayasinghe said. He said that there were more..

100 asylum seekers returned to Sri Lanka

Nov 21 (AFP) Australia has sent 100 Sri Lankan men deemed not to be refugees back to their homeland, bringing to 426 the number involuntarily returned to Colombo in the past three months. The latest planeload is the ninth and largest this month as Canberra deals with an influx of more than 15,500 asylum-seekers who have arrived on boats since the beginning of this year. "Our humanitarian programme is for people who more..

Unilever global head Paul Polman in town

Nov 21 (FT) Unilever Chief Executive Officer Paul Polman will be visiting Sri Lanka today. Accompanying Polman will be Chief Operating Officer Harish Manwani, and Executive Vice President of South Asia Nitin Paranjpe. During this visit Polman will inaugurate Unilever Sri Lanka’s new manufacturing facility in Horana. In order to meet the growing needs of the Sri Lankan consumer, Unilever Sri Lanka invested S $50 million in a new manufacturing facility in Horana. more..

Sports minister backs Haroon Lorgat's report on reforms

Nov 21 (PTI) Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage is in agreement with the former ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat's report, which has advocated sweeping changes to the way Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) is administered and the game is managed in the island. "We have recognised the need for reforms in the light of Sri Lanka finishing as runners up four times in a row since we won the World Cup. more..

Sri Lanka stocks extend losses

Nov 21 (LBO) Stocks extended losses, sliding 1.3% Wednesday on top a 1.2% fall a day earlier with losses across the board with some margin calls also contributing, brokers said. The benchmark Colombo All Share Price Index fell 73 points to close at 5,360.60 after recovering some intra-day losses. The S&P SL20 Index fell 1.36% to close at 2,951.26. Index heavy large caps including John Keells Holdings (down 3.90 rupees to 210.10), Aitken Spence (down 7.0 to 118 rupees), more..

Cable car service to Sri Pada

Nov 21 (GDI) A Cable Car service is to be introduced to travel to Sri Pada from next year. This has been stated by the Minister W.D. John Seneviratne. He has said that a cable car service will be established to connect Erathna town in Kuruwita to the top of the Samanala mountain range. Hundreds of thousands of Buddhist devotees and devotees belong to other faiths trek to the summit of the sacred mountain each year during the season which is normally starts from the more..

WikiLeaks: SLFP still a Bandaranaike party and will disintegrate in 10 years – Ranil

Nov 21 (CT) “The new Opposition Leader said the JVP wants to be ‘the second party in Sri Lanka.’ If President Kumaratunga's SLFP continues to be ‘run by Bandaranaikes,’ there is a good chance that in ten years it will disintegrate with many members coming over to the UNP. Wickremesinghe admitted that his party is taking stock of what went wrong (indeed a meeting of party luminaries was breaking up as the Ambassador arrived) more..

Mangala defends CJ while UK mulls a CHOGAM boycott

Nov 21 (CT) The speed of the Rajapakse regime’s impeachment against the Chief Justice was so swift, at the political speed of a duty free Lamborghini, that the defense against this unrestrained assault on democratic fundamentals in Sri Lanka was slow in coming. However, starting things off where it should were the lawyers for the Chief Justice who produced a comprehensive and stinging refutation of the main charges against her, that of large sums of money in her account. The explanation which more..

Rajapaksa and Mujica: Poorest President of the world!

Nov 21 (CT) I am not first talking about Mahinda Rajapaksa of Sri Lanka, but Jose Mujica of Uruguay. I am not talking about poverty in terms of vision, but modesty in terms of wealth or possession. I am also not saying that Mahinda or other Rajapaksa’s don’t have a ‘vision’ at all, but it has become completely crooked especially after defeating the LTTE. What an opportunity that they have missed to be magnanimous, be reasonable or simply ‘Just’ on the question of the Tamils and other minorities more..

'Popular School concept should be eliminated'

Nov 21 (GDI) The time is ripe to introduce educational reforms to suit modern Sri Lanka. The President has given a significant attention to improve the quality of the eduction system. He has always been keen on developing rural schools. There is a teacher shortage in these schools. This was stated by MP Namal Rajapaksa participating in the debate on the Education Ministry votes in the Parliament yesterday. more..

Sri Lankan Airlines increases flights to Trivandrum

Nov 21 (GDI) SriLankan Airlines is adding three more flights between Colombo and Trivandrum in India bringing the total to 10 flights a week. Trivandrum being the commercial hub of Kerala, and with the increase of people travelling between Sri Lanka and India the airline has decided to increase the frequency of flights to Trivandrum. Accordingly twice daily flights to Trivandrum will commence from tomorrow. This increase in Sri Lankan flight frequency to Trivandrum is more..

Speaker to look into Ranil’s complaint against chair

Nov 21 (Island) Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa yesterday said he would look into whether any member nominated to chair the committee stage of budget 2013 had abused his powers and become a hindrance to proceedings. He added that he would issue guidelines to them on how they should function when carrying out their duty during the third reading stage of budget debate. This followed Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe bringing to the notice of the Speaker that he had not more..

Sri Lanka: Here lies the rule of law

Nov 21 (G&M) There was no doubt among those watching on the ground as the Sri Lankan army carried out its blitzkrieg across the northeast of the island in early 2009. The loss of civilian life would be mammoth, and those killed would, as often as not, be in “safe zones.” In my last meeting with the chief political spokesman for the LTTE in 2005, there had been an eerie exchange of messages and warnings. Thamilselvan told more..

Karunaratne makes his debut count

Nov 21 (CI) If a run-a-ball 60 not out in the second innings in Galle swelled opener Dimuth Karunaratne's confidence, an affirmation of his talent by the Sri Lanka selectors a day later will have him feeling bulletproof. One Test into his career, Karunaratne has earned a trip to Australia on Sri Lanka's most high-profile Test tour in years, and can now dream of taking the field amid the MCG's Boxing Day hubbub. He will likely have to displace his Sinhala Sports Club opening partner more..

Govt. is slave of USA, India- Wickramabahu

Nov 21 (CT) The NSSP Leader Wickramabahu Karunaratne claimed that the United Nations (UN) is silent about the human right violation and war crimes in Sri Lanka as powerful countries like the USA and India are silently backing President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Addressing a media briefing in Colombo yesterday he said the Sri Lankan government has become a slave of the USA and India. He said the government has engaged in security and economic agreements with such countries. more..

Allergy epidemic ahead?

Nov 21 (CT) The allergy syndrome, affecting mostly school children in several parts of the country, is not life –threatening, but it has the potential to reach epidemic proportions and spread across the country in different forms, a Health Ministry official warned. Already 90 students from a number of schools in Colombo, Gampola and Balangoda were admitted to hospital yesteday with symptom similar to what was experienced by more..

Ghost wins the day: Villagers thwart exorcism

Nov 21 (Island) An exorcist, who went to chase away ghosts from a large haunted house at Eththukala, Negombo, his assistant and the owner of the house were apprehended by the villagers and handed over to the police, thinking that they were planning to sacrifice a human life to obtain a hidden treasure. The house is situated in a large coconut estate in the Eththukala tourist zone. Following the death of his wife, the wealthy house owner had been living there alone. From recently, more..

Lankan housemaid jailed for stealing sponsor’s Dh300,000 jewellery

Nov 21 (GN) A housemaid has been jailed for six months after a court convicted her of stealing jewellery worth Dh300,000 from an Emirati family she worked for. The 34-year-old Sri Lankan housemaid, L.T, wasted 12 years of good service with her Emirati sponsor when she decided to carry out the heist. The Dubai Court of First Instance convicted the defendant of stealing her sponsor’s jewellery. “She worked for us for nearly 12 years during which we never had any problem more..

Apparel exports to US swell in Jan-Sept

Nov 21 (F2F) Registering a year-on-year rise of 6%, Sri Lanka exported apparels worth US$ 537 million to the US during the first quarter of the current year, a report by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce noted. However, Sri Lanka’s overall garment export earnings for the period dipped 4.3% year-on-year, mainly on account of waning demand from the European Union, which accounts for 50% of Sri Lanka’s overall clothing exports, more..

Cops quiz Kotte Mayor

Nov 21 (CG) The police have sought details from Kotte mayor Janaka Ranawaka over a statement he had made to the media alleging that corrupt police officers were the cause for the incident at the Welikada prison. SSP Priyashantha Jayakody said that the statement made by the Kotte mayor harmed the image of the police and is a threat to the peace in the Welikada area. The police have asked the mayor to clarify his statement where he has said that some 20 police officers were involved in more..

Miliband has regrets over Sri Lanka

Nov 21 (CG) Former British Foreign Secretary David Miliband says he regrets the failure by the govt during his tenure to stop the war in Sri Lanka. During Miliband’s time as Foreign Secretary under Gordon Brown, he spent time in Sri Lanka, where he faced the issue of terrorist group Tamil Tigers and the conflict with the govt. When asked by ‘Impact Mgazine’ what he regretted during his time in office, Miliband stated that, “We failed to stop between 60-120 thousand people from being killed more..

Karu criticises govt. for promoting car races

Nov 21 (DM) UNP MP Karu Jayasuriya today slammed the govt for promoting costly Lamborghini car races in the midst of an unstable economic climate that had left a majority of people struggling to make ends meet. He said that people were severely affected by the rising cost of living and the continuing economic hardship had led to suicides, murders, rape and cases of abuse that were increasing daily. “While a section of more..

Familes flown out as message to smugglers

Nov 21 (PN) The govt flew its first asylum seeker families to Manus Island in Papua New Guinea yesterday, only to leave one group behind because of a paperwork blunder. Nineteen Sri Lankan and Iranian asylum seekers were flown on a charter jet, with another family due to fly left on Christmas Island because their names were mistakenly left off the flight manifest. The error came as the govt took the rare step of using a RAAF jet to send 100 asylum seekers home to Sri Lanka, more..

Uproar in WPC over Gammanpila's interview

Nov 21 (DN) Western Provincial Minister Udaya Gammanpila yesterday dared the Opposition to bring a no confidence motion against him, if as it claims he has violated the Council's Constitution by giving an interview to a Sinhala Daily against the Provincial Council system. He said that he is of the view that the Provincial Council system should be abolished and he is prepared to face any no confidence motion by the Opposition. There was an uproar in chamber as govt and more..

Ex-Sri Lanka president to speak on Nigeria's ethnic integration

Nov 21 (AA) Former Sri Lanka President Chandrika Kumaratunga is expected to speak on Nigeria's ethnicity and the need for integration at a national summit slated for Nov 29 in Lagos. Michael Anyiam-Osigwe, Coordinator-General of the Osigwe-Anyiam Foundation which is organizing the summit, said the choice of Kumaratunga was not based on gender sensitivity but due to her experience as a former president who was more..

Sri Lanka’s first Satellite will be launched tomorrow

Nov 21 (GDI) Sri Lanka first communication satellite, Supreme SAT I will be launched tomorrow from ‘Xi Chang’ launch centre in China. The satellite built by French manufacturer, Thales will be positioned over Sri Lanka. With tomorrow’s launch Sri Lanka becomes the third country in the SAARC region to possess satellite technology and own a satellite. It will be a joint launch by the Supreme Group of Sri Lanka and China Satellite Communications, a state-owned venture of China. more..

Editorial: A necessary catharsis

Nov 21 (CT) When one is in a hole, he must stop digging. But unfortunately for the Leader of the Opposition, Ranil Wickremesinghe, this truism has not dawned on him, at least not yet. When he made use of his parliamentary privilege and attacked a fellow opposition member, Ranil Wickremesinghe did not realize that he was digging, while being in a deep hole. The revelations made by the DNA Parliamentarian, Tiran Alles, must have made Wickremesinghe quite furious, but more..

Petitions filed against Wimal and Rajitha

Nov 21 (AD) Petitions have been filed with the Court of Appeals seeking to the prevent Ministers Wimal Weerawansa and Rajitha Senaratne from participating in the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC), appointed to probe allegations against the Chief Justice. The two writ petitions were filed by attorneys Nimal Weerakkody and Chandrapala Kumarage, and taken up today before a three-member judge bench more..

Economic policies of king Parakramabahu

Nov 22 (CT) The reign of King Parakramabahu I, also known as Parakramabahu the Great, is considered the golden era of Lanka, as the country was called at that time, in view of the unparalleled prosperity that he brought to the country during his rule. King Parakramabahu ascended the throne in 1153 ACE after bringing the divided country under a single rule and reigned the whole island from Polonnaruwa as the seat of administration for 33 long years till his death in 1186 more..

Self-interest first in Indian Trade

Nov 22 (NS) The term Big Brother was first used by George Orwell in his book 1984. It alluded to the then Soviet govt which constantly watched and monitored everything what the citizenry of Oceania did, thought and said. That is how the line Big Brother is watching you came into being. Sri Lankans might see a different connotation in this term. For them the term Big Brother stands for a big country which has a long standing cultural and geo-political relationship with Sri Lanka. more..

Moragahakanda project will be completed ahead of schedule

Nov 22 (SO) Sri Lanka’s last major hydro power generating venture, Moragahakanda Project, is now progressing ahead of schedule and is to be completed in July 2016. The project which would not only add 25MW of electricity to the national grid, would also, most importantly, provide a domestic and industrial water supply to Anuradhapura, Trincomalee, Polonnaruwa and Matale districts for the development of more..

How the discourse on Human Rights is perverted

Nov 22 (DBS) I was called up by the BBC when they received a leaked copy of the Report to the Secretary General on the work of UN Agencies in Sri Lanka during the conflict period. They wanted me to comment and, though they would not share with me what they had, I agreed since I did not want the debate to go by default. They promised to send me the text of what their correspondent Lyse Doucette was posting on their website at 2 pm GMT. They would not send this to me more..

Editorial: Of that red kohila curry

Nov 22 (Island) Chameleon-like colour changes are not unusual in our Parliament. They are, in fact, taken for granted. ‘Green’ turns ‘Blue’ and vice versa depending on the buying power of governments desperate for increasing their numbers in the House. But there has been a real hullabaloo there over a vegetable dish that turned red in the parliament canteen. Everybody panicked when food inspectors found a kohila curry unusually red in colour on Tuesday. Samples of the dish were sent for more..

Coming home

Nov 22 (ST) Descending the steps leading to the Cinnamon Grand garden terrace is someone who is clearly a visitor. Accompanied by two Sri Lankans who are showing her the way, the person (personage, rather), dressed in a close-fitting knee-length skirt, leather top, high heels and large sunglasses, shows curiosity about her surroundings. She spots a koka hopping across the tiled terrace and follows its dainty movements as it picks more..

Public perceptions of budget and fiscal policy

Nov 22 (NS) Public perceptions and the economics of fiscal policy diverge diametrically. The public views the budget as a dole out of benefits and concessions as if the govt has an unlimited amount of resources. Therefore, every budget is looked upon by the public as a means of getting some concessions, reliefs, salary increases, reduction in costs and other benefits. In fact, governments pander to these expectations. The presentation of the budget was mostly a recitation of more..

Will the predictions about the judiciary come true?

Nov 22 (CT) In an article entitled ‘Once judiciary is broken the Rajapaksas will use the court to destroy every remaining right or freedom’, Tisaranee Gunasekara makes the following prediction: If the impeachment succeeds without wounding the Rajapaksas, that will become the judicial norm in Sri Lanka. Once the judiciary is turned invertebrate, it too will begin to act like the current Attorney General’s Department (which was taken over by the President in 2010), all the time. more..