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Animal Sacrifice During Hajj in Sri Lanka

Oct 25 (TP) It’s Hajj season again. From all over Sri Lanka, a few thousand fortunate Muslims have already left to perform the pilgrimage, a once-in-a-lifetime obligation for those who can afford it, joining hundreds of thousands more in Mecca. The Hajj is considered the pilgrimage of Abraham and has been practised ever since the time of that prophet, peace be upon him. But the time of Hajj is also significant to those who remain in their homes. According to Muslim belief, good deeds carried out in the first ten days more..

NZ v SL: Ajantha Mendis out of limited-overs squad

Oct 25 (CI) Spinner Ajantha Mendis has been left out of the Sri Lanka squad for the Twenty20 and the first three ODIs against New Zealand due to a side strain he sustained early in the World Twenty20. Mahela Jayawardene, who led Sri Lanka to the World Twenty20 final earlier this month, and Lasith Malinga, who has been the team's spearhead in limited overs, have also been rested for the more..

Seychelles set to benefit from Sri Lanka’s fisheries experts

Oct 25 (NO) Sri Lanka’s Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Minister Rajitha Senaratne is in Seychelles on an official one-week visit to discuss furthering cooperation in areas relating to his ministry. He arrived in the country yesterday accompanied by a delegation of top govt officials. The team was met at the Seychelles International Airport by the Minister for Natural Resources and Industry Peter Sinon and the ministry’s more..

Murali's agent denies Kiwi rumours

Oct 25 (C365) Sri Lankan fans can breathe a sigh of relief because spin legend Muttiah Muralitharan will not, in fact, be helping New Zealand's batsmen and bowlers when they visit his home country in November. Reports on Wednesday suggested that Mike Hesson had asked Murali for help on their tour to the country, but the 40-year-old's agent has denied this. Kushil Gunasekara said: "There's no truth in it. His name was just dragged into it." While Hesson only hinted at enlisting Murali's more..

CPC shuts refinery for two weeks

Oct 25 (Reuters) Ceylon Petroleum Corp (Ceypetco) will shut Sri Lanka’s sole 50,000 barrels-per-day oil (bpd) refinery for two weeks on Friday after exhausting its supply of mainly Iranian crude oil, a company official said. The company has enough crude to last until Friday and will receive its next crude oil shipment from Dubai on Nov. 8 or Nov. 9 when the refinery will restart, Ceypetco general manager Susantha Silva said. more..

Judgment in cobra case fixed for Nov. 15

Oct 25 (DM) The Colombo Fort Magistrate today reserved the judgment over a request made for the release of a cobra to the woman who had allegedly kept it in a room at a night club in Kollupitiya, for November 15. When the case came up before Magistrate Kanishka Wijeratne, President’s Counsel Rienzie Arsakularatne appearing for the suspect Nirosha Wimalaratne alias Dilani moved Court that the cobra be released to his client under any condition. Mr. Arsakularatne argued more..

New UK visa application procedure

Oct 25 (DM) All visa applications submitted in Colombo will be processed by the UK Border Agency at the British Deputy High Commission in Chennai from 1 November 2012, The UK Border Agency announced today. The statement as follows: Today, the UK Border Agency announced the details of arrangements for the processing of UK visa applications from Thursday, 1 Nov 2012. From this date, all visa applications submitted in Colombo will be processed by the UK Border Agency at more..

COPE spotlights six bad transactions

Oct 25 (DM) The investment of Rs.1,137 million by the People’s Bank in the purchase of shares of Sri Lankan Airlines had impaired by Rs. 848.8 million in 2010, according to the interim report of the parliamentary Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) presented in the House today. In its interim report presented ahead of the annual budget, the COPE has identified six such transactions of poor accountability at various more..

The Constitution of Sri Lanka Part 9

Oct 26 (NS) He then proceeds to offer a solution. A National convention “to come to terms” with the problems India is facing is what he offers. We might quote him here on this matter: “What India needs now is a year of introspection and soul-searching. We should take pride in our accomplishments, but there is no time for self-adulation. The need of the hour is to come to terms with myriad of problems, lapses, failures, crises and to recognize them and to confront them head on. more..

The Pretender

Oct 26 (NS) For some time now, Fonseka has been attempting to forge an alliance of opposition forces. Former Minister Hemakumara Nanayakkara is also engaged in a similar project. Ideally, such an alliance would include the UNP rebels, the TNA, the JVP, the FSP, Mano Ganesan’s outfit, the Nava Samasamaja Party, the United Socialist Party of Sirithunga, and the anti-govt NGO community. The common cause that would unite this motley crew would be their hatred towards the more..

'SL moves forward with rapid development'

Oct 26 (SO) The UN Day was established to highlight the aims and achievements of the United Nations. The day marks the anniversary of the entry of the UN Charter in 1945. The annual day has been observed since 1948. United Nations Day has traditionally been marked throughout the world with meetings, discussions and exhibits about the achievements and goals of the organisation. On Dec 14, 1955, Sri Lanka signed the UN Charter, more..

Repealing 13 A violates Mahinda Chinthanya

Oct 26 (DBS) The Mahinda Chinthanya Way Forward, the 2010 election manifesto and indeed political vision and action plan of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has an importance and seriousness which exceeds the average election manifesto in a democratic society. Now, an election manifesto itself is an important document, because from it flows, the concept of a mandate to rule, the consent of the governed that forms the core value of a democratic system of govt amongst a sovereign people. more..

The ‘KP-Strangeness’

Oct 26 (CT) Kumaran Pathmanathan, KP that is, is a strange character and one that has become a ‘concept’ that is even amenable to inclusion in ideological lexicons, as in ‘KPism’. For a long time, he was a key member of the LTTE. Indeed, some would argue, that he was as or more important than Prabhakaran or Anton Balasingham to that much-feared and ruthless terrorist outfit. He was the LTTE’s main point-man internationally for all kinds of money-making rackets and arms more..

A one-man show with a one-man agenda

Oct 26 (CT) When launching an initiative in Sri Lanka, it is well known that one should be careful to call it the opposite of what it really is. Worried about infighting? Then be sure to include the word ‘united’ in the title. Concerned that the dubious public image of the leaders may dissuade people from joining up? Then it is inspirational concepts like ‘freedom’ that one needs to reference. And so it is with the National Movement for Social more..

The 13th Amendment: UPFA govt is heading for its first defeat in the parlaiment

Oct 26 (CT) The virtual repeal of the 17th Amendment as a necessary corollary of the enactment of the 18th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka, the chauvinist forces in the South began to raise the possibility of further amendment to the constitution by using the two-third majority that the UPFA have in the Parliament. Their clear target has been the 13th Amendment that introduced in 1987 for the first time in independent Sri Lanka a devolved system of govt to make more..

The 13th Amendment: Gota should remain loudly silent on political matters

Oct 26 (CT) The 13th Amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution came by largely as a result of the Indo Lanka Agreement (1987) after substantial and careful study by legal and other experts of both countries. The Agreement came at a time when the JR Jayawardene Govt was under extreme pressure simultaneously from the JVP in the South and the LTTE in the North – both having launched island-wide attacks on State utilities as well as the Police and the armed forces. more..

Ray Award

Oct 26 (DM) Henry Ford once said “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” People do not know what they really want till it is presented to them and it is for the visionary to come up with inventions capable of moving civilisation ahead. The Ray Wijewardene Charitable Trust was established in January 2011 to promote the vision and ideas of the late Dr. Ray Wijewardene, an illustrious more..

Political freedom and Judicial Independence

Oct 26 (AT) It is almost two weeks since the Secretary of the Judicial Services Commission (JSC) Manjula Tilakeratne was attacked in broad daylight, on a busy suburban road, by four armed men. The police have so far failed to make any headway in the investigation into this outrage. And the perpetrators of this most outrageous crime continue to remain safe, beyond the reach of law. That curious – but not unexpected - failure speaks far more resoundingly than any ‘discoveries’ more..

Editorial: Maalu, maalu …

Oct 26 (Island) These days, fishers in some areas don't have to go out to sea. The fish (maalu) are coming to them or, rather, rushing ashore. Scientists have attributed this phenomenon to climatic change. All these fish are small and the big ones are still in the refuge of the deep sea. On land, too, it is the small fish that get easily caught. The last few months have seen some sprats being netted by the anti-bribery sleuths while killer sharks and whales that sail into public funds are gamboling. The prosecution of two CPC officials for importing more..

Catch the bigger fish, Harsha tells Bribery Commission

Oct 26 (FT) UNP MP Dr. Harsha de Silva yesterday, whilst welcoming the action against the former NSB Chairman, urged the Bribery Commission to catch the bigger fish who are equally responsible for the alleged white collar crime. Here is the statement issued by the UNP MP: Finally the Bribery Commission has found the courage to go after the big fish. However, why is only Mr. Kariyawasam being charged? If there is evidence more..

Fortune 500 carmaker enters Sri Lanka

Oct 26 (Island) Geely, the Fortune 500 Chinese automotive multinational that now owns 100% of Sweden’s Volvo and part produces the famed London’s black taxi cabs, is entering Sri Lanka in collaboration with Micro Cars Ltd. A special investment team of Shanghai’s Geely International Corporation led by Martin Xiang, Director of Geely, Dr. Lawrence Perera (Chairman – Micro Cars Ltd) took part in discussions with top officials of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, more..

Further reforms underway, says CB

Oct 26 (FT) Encouraged by major strides, the Central Bank said yesterday further reforms are currently being undertaken to improve the country’s business environment and the Doing Business Ranking, which would enhance the efficiency and productivity of businesses in Sri Lanka. The bank said according to the Doing Business Ranking computed by the World Bank Group, Sri Lanka is ranked 81 out of 185 countries in 2013. This is a tangible improvement compared to the more..

COPE: Greek bonds purchase must be probed further

Oct 26 (Island) The Parliamentary Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) has recommended that the Central Bank’s investment in Greek bonds, which has resulted in the loss of around US $ 15. 6 million to the country, be further investigated. Minister D.E.W. Gunasekera who heads the Committee presented an interim report to Parliament based on investigations it had carried out into the workings of 32 state owned institutions more..

Fisheries industry provides jobs for over 600,000 - Rajitha

Oct 26 (DN) The fisheries industry provides direct and indirect employment to over 600,000 persons, Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne said. "Sri Lanka's fisheries sector constitutes a very important sector in the country's socio - economic milieu. Fish has always been the main source of animal protein for Sri Lankans and the local fish production provides the bulk of the consumer demand," he said. Minister Senaratne was addressing World Food Day celebrations at the United Nations more..

Teas from Lanka fetch higher price

Oct 26 (BL) Sri Lanka teas continued to fetch the world’s highest price average, reveals an the latest data available with the different auction centres around the globe. In the first seven months, the Island’s teas fetched an average price of $3.01 a kg at Colombo auctions, 9.34% lower compared with $3.32 got in the same period of 2011. Kenya’s teas fetched the second highest $2.77 at Mombasa auctions, marginally higher than $2.75 got last year. Bangladesh’s teas came third at $2.19 more..

SriLankan now in Wennappuwa

Oct 26 (FT) SriLankan Airlines added Wennappuwa, the Puttalam District town fondly called, ‘Little Italy,’ to its growing network of sales offices across the island on 25th October, with the opening of a new branch. Wennappuwa is called ‘Little Italy’ for good reason. Sustained by a large community of migrant workers employed in Italy, the funds funnelled home have not only enriched their families, but transformed the town to a thriving, more..

ADB $300 million to fund overhaul water, sewer systems in Colombo

Oct 26 (DN) The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is providing $300 million in loans to overhaul the quality, coverage, and management of water and wastewater services in Colombo. "Parts of Colombo's water supply distribution network are over 100 years old and some areas only get water for less than half the day, while the sewer network suffers from frequent collapses and blockages," said Mingyuan Fan, Urban Development Specialist in ADB's South Asia Department. more..

Pharmaceutical chamber to support Nat. Drug Policy

Oct 26 (Island) The Sri Lanka Chamber of the Pharmaceutical Industry (SLCPI) said it would extend its support to the much talked about National Medicinal Drug Policy. SLCPI President Vish Govindasamy said the Chamber had appealed to the Health Minister to give the SLCPI also an opportunity to analyse the draft document so as to ensure that the drug companies would not be at a disadvantage. He said that Minister had agreed to the request when it had been made more..

'Market economy should benefit all'

Oct 26 (DM) Following is the speech by Leader of the Opposition Ranil Wickremesinghe, at the Business Today TOP TWENTY FIVE awards ceremony. I think you politicians have got fixed by Parthipan. Generally, it’s 25 of us speaking and about two of you; and the rest of you listen. But this time you got to listen to 25 businessmen and just two politicians speaking. Is it that you want to make us feel what it is like when you sit at all the functions and more..

Sri Lanka must remain committed to devolution and the 13th Amendment

Oct 26 (TOI) In a troubling development that can sour ties between New Delhi and Colombo, calls for repealing the 13th Amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution have been growing louder. Disturbingly, the move against the 13th Amendment - a product of the 1987 Rajiv Gandhi-Jayewardene Accord that provides for devolution of powers to provincial councils - is being championed from within the ruling dispensation in Colombo. While defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa has openly called for more..

GMOA strike a success; patients suffer

Oct 26 (Island) The 24-hour countrywide strike launched by the GMOA is scheduled to end at 8.00 am today. Patients who sought treatment at govt hospitals were severely affected. The Island spoke to a cross-section of hospital directors. National Hospital Director Dr. Anil Jasinghe said that patients seeking treatment at the OPD and the clinics had been affected due to the strike. But, all emergency cases had been attended to. Although the routine surgeries had been cancelled, all the more..

Children used as pawns in porn websites

Oct 26 (DM) The special police unit of the National Child Protection Authority has uncovered details of 50 locally designed porn websites some of which portraying under-aged girls in school uniforms. A senior officer of the authority said these websites were freely accessible to anyone by the internet with the use of mobile phones. Police are now are trying to establish the identity of those who had posed in these websites. When a more..

Korean test results out; 4391 selected

Oct 26 (Island) The Korean language proficiency test results were released yesterday (25) and are available on official website of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment and The candidates will be able to check the results by entering their index number. Details of the selected candidates will also be available on the Korean human resources website, it said. SLBFE, chairman, Amal Senalankadikara said that 4391 had been selected out of the 31,271 who sat more..

More hydro power with reservoir levels rising

Oct 26 (Island) The water levels of reservoirs were rapidly increasing due to the current inter-monsoon rains over the past five days. Ministry spokesman Danushka Ramanayake told The Island that hydro power generation from reservoirs was currently at around 29%. "The hydro power generating capacity was 14 per cent two months ago," he said, adding that the situation was improving with the inter-monsoon rains. Ramanayake said, however, that the full capacity was 40-45%. more..

Amaraneeya Nayakayek: Gamini Dissanayake– Reminiscences

Oct 26 (IL) The first copy of the book titled Amaraneeya Nayakayek-Gamini Dissanayake Puranavalokanaya (Leader Par Excellence, Gamini Dissanayake – Reminiscences) published to mark the 18th death anniversary of Gamini Dissanayake being presented to President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees by Srima Dissanayake and her son Minister Navin Dissanayake yesterday (25). more..

On Sri Lanka, Heyns on 40,000 dead and video half-shown in UN, UPR

Oct 26 (ICP) The UN system's Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary and Arbitrary Executions has inevitably dealt with Sri Lanka for some years, given the mandate. ICP on October 25 asked Christof Heyns what he has done, to follow up on his predecessor Philip Alston's work on video footage of executions, and otherwise. Alston deemed the executions video authentic, in a session in the UN's Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium. Heyns on Thursday told ICP that he followed up on more..

Shavendra goes to Uganda

Oct 26 (Island) Ambassador Major General Shavendra Silva, Deputy Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, recently visited Uganda, where he had an opportunity to meet Ugandan Prime Minister, Foreign Minister, Deputy Foreign Minister, deputy Speaker, Interior Minister, Chief of Defence Staff, Secretary of Defence, the Joint Chief of Staff and the IGP. During the Oct 14-19 visit, Maj. Gen. Silva attended the AGM of the East African police chiefs. more..

Govt. in touch with Diaspora

Oct 26 (Island) Communication links with important members of the pro-LTTE Tamil Diaspora had been established in an attempt to win their hearts and minds and convince them of the futility of continuing with the state of mistrust and tension, the govt said. Minister Rambukwella said that exchanges were continuing and the focus was on convincing Tamils of the advantages that would accrue to all Sri Lankans, more..

Army Chief to sue two Tamil newspapers

Oct 26 (CT) Army Commander Lt. Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya is to file a defamation case against two Jaffna-based newspapers today. According to highly placed army sources, the petition, to be filed in the Jaffna High Court, refers to a news article published by the two Tamil newspapers, with the alleged intension of tarnishing the image of the Army Commander. The sources alleged the two newspapers had published news articles stating that the Army Commander had indicated that more..

Sigiri graffiti ‘will be erased forever’

Oct 26 (CT) Academics have raised concern about the white spots that have appeared on the famed Ketapath Pawra (mirror wall) at the Sigiriya Rock citadel, stating that unless immediate action is taken, the ancient writings on the wall will be erased forever. Prof. B.D. Nandadeva, Professor of Fine Arts at the Kelaniya University, who heads the team that arrived at Sigiriya to study the phenomenon, said measures will be taken to use chemicals as counters to the spots. It is believed the marks more..