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CMC labours to get more midwives

Nov 28 (Island) A severe dearth of midwives in the Public Health Department of the Colombo Municipal Council has hampered many community health programmes lined up for next year. Chairman of the Standing Committee on Health and Sanitation and Councillor M. Arshad said yesterday that the CMC had only been given 19 of the 39 midwives allocated to it by the Health Ministry through the Western Provincial Council. more..

Kudankulam: Nuclear disaster in the making?

Nov 28 (SL) The generation of electricity from the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant in the Thirunelveli District, build despite protests from thousands of Tamil Nadu citizens, is to begin soon and according to Minister V. Narayan Samy, the ‘final touches’ to the project are being done to begin the power generation in early December. While an Indian court has declared that steps would be taken to shut down more..

Sri Lankan garment sector may miss US$5bn target

Nov 28 (F2F) The Sri Lankan apparel sector may not be able to achieve the US$ 5 billion target fixed by the Govt for 2015, mainly due to waning exports and increasing costs of production, according to experts. In the first three quarters of the current year, clothing exports from Sri Lanka plummeted 7% over same period last year. The main fall was witnessed in exports to the EU and the US, which dipped by 10% year-on-year and more..

CID arrests SF’s media coordinator

Nov 28 (Island) Former Army Commander Gen. Sarath Fonseka’s freelance media coordinator, Sanjeeva Samarasinghe was arrested by the CID under mysterious circumstances yesterday evening at his residence in Ragama. Samarasinghe, a journalist and the former Lake House UNP trade union secretary, was being grilled by the CID, but the reason for his arrest and questioning remained a mystery at the time of more..

Parliament debates state of utilities, services

Nov 28 (FT) Inefficiency of state owned transport services reducing its stake from over 75% to 25% for both CTB and railway services against private busses catering to 44% of the transport requirements of the nation was taken into debate at Committee Stage Program of Appropriation Bill – Budget 2013. Moving the debate, M. Joseph Michael Perera (UNP) highlighted the inefficiency of state owned more..

Woman found with throat slit, husband missing

Nov 28 (Island) A beautiful woman was found with her throat slit, in her sleep, at her residence at St. Sebastian Lane, Mabola, Wattala yesterday morning. Her second husband, with whom she was living, had gone missing. The victim, Sriyani Ranaweera (44), had married her second husband about one and a half years ago after divorcing her first husband. She had 3 children from her first marriage and one of her sons had died in more..

Docs at Karapitiya drew Rs. 10.8 mn in O/T at time their unit was closed

Nov 28 (Island) Doctors attached to the Karapitiya Teaching Hospital Cardio-Thoracic Unit have claimed Rs.10.8 million as overtime pay, full holiday allowances and other allowances from Feb 2011 up to March 2012 even though, during that period, the unit remainedclosed. The Unit was closed in Feb 2011 for renovations, but the doctors attached to it had collected a large amount money on the pretext of working in the unit, there. more..

Google reaches out to Sri Lankan parents on safe use of Internet

Nov 28 (ST) Google, the globally-popular search engine, in a rare encounter with Google fans and parents in Sri Lanka, is launching a ‘Good to Know’ campaign here to discuss the safe use of the Internet. The mega US-based IT company is partnering with Sri Lanka’s Information Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) and the Ministry of Child Development and Women’s Affairs to launch the campaign on 29th Nov more..

Access to civil justice: Sri Lanka outperforms South Asian peers

Nov 28 (DM) Sri Lanka outperforms its regional peers in all but two dimensions of the rule of law, a latest report, the 'Rule of Law Index 2012' by World Justice Project revealed. “The country also outpaces most lower-middle income countries in several areas, ranking second in criminal justice, and third in the dimensions of open government, effective regulatory enforcement, and absence of corruption,” the report said. more..

Mahindrapuram and reintegrating people in northern development

Nov 28 (CT) The landscape in the more densely populated parts of the once war ravaged North is a rapidly changing one. The govt’s focus on investing in physical infrastructure such as public buildings and roads is showing visible results. Suddenly the skeletal structures of buildings get filled out and transform the appearance of an entire area. When we passed the town of Kilinochchi, the onetime administrative capital of the LTTE, it was lighted up even though the hour was late in the night. more..

Editorial: Dr. Amunugama, tell the bitter truth!

Nov 28 (CT) Rarely do politicians tell the truth. However, in this instance, the Deputy Minister of Finance, Dr. Sarath Amunugama, has chosen to do so. And in doing so, he has allowed us to have a peek into the sorry state of affairs the country's economy is in, especially when it comes to the growing gap between income and expenditure. It is telling that of all the places and occasions, the minister chose the opening ceremony of a People's Bank Service Centre in the Kandy more..

Real reasons behind removing restriction on transfer of vehicle permits

Nov 28 (CT) “I write further to the instruction of the informant who claimed to have provided the credible information of a revenue fraud in which two companies namely LOLC and LB Finance are directly involved. This particular information has been given to the Deputy Director Mr. G.H.G.A. Lankadeva (Central Valuation), concerning importation of a large number of ‘permit cars’ by fraudulent means where the permits more..

Sanga to have Bollywood actress as neighbour

Nov 28 (DM) Kumar Sangakkara may soon have Bollywood actress Jacqueline Fernandes as his neighbor in Sri Lanka. “We have learnt that Jacqueline Fernandes, who seems to be doing rather well for herself, has bought an island off the South Coast of the idyllic country. This is close to where Sangakkara has bought a little island as well. This is part of a massive realty project that is now a playground of the rich and the famous, and the Sri Lankan beauty is obviously one of them,” more..

An unspotted run-out, and Patel's walk

Nov 28 (CI) Martin Guptill took a stellar diving catch at second slip to dismiss Angelo Mathews on the third day, but Kane Williamson's take at gully the next day was better. Trent Boult was moving the ball away from Rangana Herath, and when the batsman pushed at one and got an edge, the ball seemed to be flying high over Williamson. In a flash Williamson was in the air, legs akimbo and left arm outstretched, and he clung on to the ball like he would a handrail on a maglev train. more..

Seamers give New Zealand shot at victory

Nov 28 (CI) In an intriguing day's Test cricket, in which 17 wickets fell, New Zealand left the hosts tottering with the top four back in the pavilion chasing a challenging 363 on the last day at the P Sara Oval. Fortunes ebbed and flowed but it was New Zealand who started the ended the day on a high. After wrapping up the Sri Lanka innings early, their top order was jolted and their plans of piling on a big lead before declaring took a hit. more..

Bangladeshi trio rape Sri Lankan maid

Nov 28 (ATO) Police are looking for three Bangladeshis for kidnapping and raping a Sri Lankan housemaid, reports Annahar daily. According to security sources the maid in her complaint to the police said she was walking along a street in Firdous and the three men forced her into their car and drove her to a desert in Sabah Al-Ahmad and raped her successively several times. The maid added the men then started drinking alcohol and she managed to escape.

Six killed in Train – 3 wheel accident

Nov 28 (CG) Six people were killed when a train collided with a three-wheeler in Ambanpola this morning, the police media unit said. Police media spokesman SSP Priyashantha Jayakody said that the accident took place at the Kirimetiyawa railway crossing. He said that the Yaldevi train which was heading to Vavuniya from olombo, collided with the three wheeler killing six people who were in the vehicle. Among the victims were women and a child and two men, the police spokesman said. more..

Henchman of powerful govt. politician takes sex for transfers

Nov 28 (Island) A Colombo National Hospital (NHSL) trade union leader, connected to a powerful govt politician and an employee of the Medical Supplies Division (MSD) are alleged to have committed a sex offence and sexually harassed two female employees of the MSD and one female minor staffer of the NHSL. The trade union leader had taken the NHSL female employee, who had sought a transfer, more..

Seylan Bank loan to public private partnership goes bad

Nov 28 (LBO) Seylan Bank, which came under state stewardship following a run is trying to recover 418 million rupees loaned to a public private partnership involving an Australia based party, a public notice shows. Seylan Bank said it was auctioning equipment from Auslanka Paper Company, to recover a defaulted loan and interest at 31%. Auslanka Paper Company, is an entity incorporated with Perth Engineering and Maintenance, an Australia based firm, to revive a defunct more..

Whale and Dolphin conservation by SriLankan Airlines

Nov 28 (GDI) SriLankan Airlines has announced the launch of Project BLUEprint in partnership with Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), UK. The airline and wildlife charity will work together to jointly develop a community-based responsible whale and dolphin watching industry off the coast of Sri Lanka and encourage responsible behaviour amongst local boat tour operators. As well as raising awareness at a community level, SriLankan Airlines will be showing a film by Philip Hoare and more..

Sri Lanka clash over Tamil rebel remembrance

Nov 28 (AFP) Students in Sri Lanka’s former war zone clashed with troops and police on Wednesday over celebrations to commemorate defeated Tamil Tiger guerrillas, residents said. At least 20 undergraduates were injured when troops and police beat up stone-pelting students outside Jaffna university, a witness said. It was the first major clash since security forces crushed Tamil rebels in May 2009. Police and more..

Possessed parents kill child

Nov 28 (CT) A 14-year old girl was killed during a ritual, by a couple who were said to be possessed in the Kadirapura area, in Dehiattakandiya in the early hours of today. Two other girls, aged 19 and seven years, were beaten up and burnt during the same ritual. The possessed woman is said to have inserted a knife into the girl’s throat which killed her. The couple has been arrested, while the injured girls have been admitted to the Polonnaruwa hospital. The couple had lit a fire and the two girls more..

Coconuts dashed in front of Supreme courts

Nov 28 (SM) There was a vociferous protest in front of the Supreme Courts in Colombo today along with the dashing of coconuts to which the Golden key customers too joined in. The customers of Ceylinco Sriram Capital Management, Golden Key credit Card Company, and Finance and Gurantee Company joined in the protest on the grounds that the hearing of their fundamental rights cases were being delayed and they had not hitherto received any relief. Depositors had come from more..

Central Bank defends NY property purchase

Nov 28 (NS) The Central Bank today confirmed that the Bank has reported the acquisition of a property in New York, USA in accordance with the prevailing International and Sri Lanka Accounting Standards, and also that the property has been acquired in accordance with the established legal framework and procurement procedures. "Further, in keeping with the advice of the Attorney General, the Cabinet of Ministers too, has more..

Nurses threaten strike on Dec.7

Nov 28 (DM) The Govt Nursing Officers Association (GNOA) warned of another strike on Dec 7. GNOA President Saman Rathnapriya said today that all GNOA members will keep away from work for an hour in an effort to win six of its demands including the rectification of salary anomalies, recruitments and promotions. He said if the govt failed to provide a solution to these demands within a week they will go ahead with a strike and would resort to severe trade union action without prior notice if more..

SC puts off nine references

Nov 28 (ST) The nine references in the Supreme Court relating to the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake were put off for Friday (30). When these cases were called before the Supreme Court Bench comprising Justice Nimal Gamini Amaratunga, Justice K. Sripavan and Justice Priyasath Dep, the court noted that the court did not have any evidence to show that the Court of Appeal where these cases were filed originally, has taken steps to notify the respondent 11 members of more..

SLTB may lose Rs. 6 Bn this year: Official

Nov 28 (DM) The Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) said its estimated loss at the end of this year would be a colossal six billion rupees. Transport officials said improper bus timetables was one of the reasons for such massive losses while another was the buses being operated on less frequented routes. A fleet of 4,000 SLTB buses could not compete with 21,000 private buses, which monopolised the country’s transport sector. more..

Mahanayakas call for withdrawal of impeachment motion on CJ

Nov 28 (ST) The Mahanayaka theras have called President Mahinda Rajapska to withdraw the Impeachment Motion agaisnt Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake. The four Mahanayakas in a letter to the President have set out the reasons for calling to withdraw the motion. The text of the letter follows: Your Excellency, Sri Lanka is an island which won the eulogy "Daham Divayina" from time immemorial and was praised here and abroad. But society at present is full of grave crimes more..

8th International Tipitaka chanting ceremony to be held in Bodhgaya from Dec 2

Nov 28 (TOI) The International Tipitaka Chanting Council has announced that the Eighth International Tipitaka Chanting Ceremony will be held in Bodhgaya, from Dec 2 -12 2012. Senior monks and their followers from ten countries will come together to chant from the Pali Tipitaka at the ancient Mahabodhi Mahavihara Temple, with a colourful opening ceremony and procession on Dec 2 following the opening function on the Kalachakra ground. Organized by the Sangha of more..

National Youth Policy ready by March

Nov 28 (DN) The Govt is to formulate a National Youth Policy with technical expertise from the Open University of Sri Lanka, in a bid to empower youths and address their problems effectively. A special steering committee comprising all stakeholders of society including govt officials, civil society representatives and youth members at grass root level has commenced gathering opinions from a cross section of people more..

Access eyes int’l vehicle brands for Sathosa

Nov 28 (ST) The Access Group is planning to bring international vehicle brands under the umbrella of its latest acquisition, Sathosa Motors, officials said. “We’re looking at other international brands to bring under the Sathosa umbrella. Within this month we’re hoping to sign a deal with a premier international vehicle brand,” Sumal Perera, Chairman Access said. He said this brand will coplement Sathosa Motors’ current brand, Isuzu. He said that Access already signed a deal with Sunny more..

Treasury to stop pumping money into ailing state- backed agriculture insurance scheme

Nov 28 (ST) Sri Lanka’s Treasury will halt the practice of pumping money to keep afloat the ailing state- backed insurance scheme for agriculture sector making use of a new levy imposed on the profits of banking, finance and insurance institutions. Several commercial banks and finance companies have expressed concern on the new 1per cent levy as they believe this is due to the inability of the National Insurance Trust Fund (NITF) to properly implement previous crop insurance schemes. more..

Shavendra’s appointment to South Africa in the pipeline

Nov 28 (CG) The govt’s is considering appointing Shavendra Silva as the deputy high commissioner to South Africa, the South African media reported. Sri Lankan high commissioner to South Africa Winithkumar Shehan Rantavale confirmed speculation in the Sri Lankan media that General Shavendra Silva’s appointment to Pretoria was “in the pipeline”. Silva commanded the Sri Lankan army’s 58th division, which more..

Pristine and Pure

Nov 29 (NS) Surrounded by lush green mountain ranges, water springs surfacing during rains, Kandy, rich in beauty, also boasts of cool breeze, morning mist and bird song. People from all parts of the country visit this scared land not only to pay homage to the Temple of Tooth Relic, but also to experience the splendor of the bliss of the hill country, a beauty that has been preserved for centuries, except for the new constructions on hilly areas reducing the greenery that surrounds the city. more..

Kilinochchi girls don uniforms

Nov 29 (NS) Yesterday, 100 girls were recruited to the Army at a ceremony held in Kilinochchi. This is considered a significant point in post war times, when such opportunities are provided to women to stand on their own feet. Women, in this once war-torn region had suffered, and difficulties that followed. Survival was a huge challenge, especially for those who had to run families. The girls will be enlisted in the Volunteer Force of the Sri Lanka Army and be assigned to serve more..

Mysterious ‘Red rain’ Scientists wonder whether it’s extraterrestrial

Nov 29 (NS) Michael Crichton in his 1969 novel The Andromeda Strain deals with a deadly extraterrestrial microorganism that rapidly and fatally clots human blood. A military satellite designed to capture upper-atmosphere microorganisms upon reentering the Earth wreaks havoc in Piedmont, Arizona, where the satellite lands. This may not seem like the stuff sci-fi anymore, now with some leading scientists more..

Charmaine Vanderkoen Mendis a multi-faceted Diamond

Nov 29 (DBS) The paintings and drawings exhibited by Charmaine in her latest exhibition are, in her own words, “an expression of myself, my feelings, my experiences, my escape; they are my meditations, my relaxation, and the meanderings of my mind, whilst my body is firmly rooted in the mundane present”. According to Charmaine, her only employment of technique is in the tree drawings. “They are the result of my mentor, Karunasiri Wijesinghe’s inspiration, encouragement and more..

Editorial: CMC's midwifery problem

Nov 29 (Island) The city beautification programme has already yielded impressive results. Colombo is beginning to have the look of a modern city. But, physical development alone will not help improve the people's lot, especially in the poor quarters of Colombo. There are several aspects of public life that the government needs to address with a view to helping the marginalised people. Among them is the health care provision at the grassroots level. The city is experiencing a severe dearth of midwives, more..

NLDB steps up milk production

Nov 29 (SO) The Menikpalama Dairy Farm will be made into a state-of the-art farm. Our aim is to achieve self-sufficiency in dairy products. The Govt has taken steps to achieve this goal, National Livestock Development Board (NLDB) Chairman, Lieutenant Colonel Ranjith Ellegala said. He said plans are afoot to increase milk production in the region by distributing calves to dairy farmers and estate workers. The Chairman said already more..

Removal of judges; A comparative review of the procedures

Nov 29 (CT) The Parliament Select Committee (PSC) appointed to probe the allegations leveled against the present Chief Justice commenced its proceedings on the 23rd of Nov. Meanwhile numbers of prominent professionals have invoked the jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal seeking orders in the nature of writ of prohibition against the PSC challenging the constitutionality of the PSC and its procedures. These petitions are now before the SC to determine the constitutionality more..