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No smoking, drinking scenes – NATA’s call to film, drama producers

Sept 2 (SO) The National Alcohol and Tobacco Authority (NATA) yesterday warned film and drama producers to refrain from showing scenes of smoking and alcohol consumption. NATA Chairman Prof. Carlo Fonseka said that most film and drama producers in the country do not pay attention this request and are still in the habit of showing smoking and drinking scenes in their productions. According to the National Tobacco Control Authority Act No. 27 of 2006, advertising, promotion and more..

Indian TV actor Gagan Malik to star in Sri Lankan film on Buddha

Sept 2 (PTI) Delhi boy Gagan Malik, who is essaying the character of Lord Ram in Zee TV's epic retelling of 'Ramayan', has bagged his debut international project "Siddharth - The Buddha". The actor plays the titular character in the Sri Lankan film which will focus on the journey of Gautam Buddha's life. The film will release in Sri Lanka on January 17. "I am excited for my first international project. I worked really hard to be a part of it. 300 men had auditioned for the role. more..

Confusion and anger at arbitrary power cuts

Sept 2 (SL) People are reacting with anger over the arbitrary power cuts being carried out by the Ceylon Electricity Board. The original power cuts of two hours and twenty minutes were extended by another hour after the country’s only coal power plant failed once again. The CEB announced a schedule of areas and times of power cuts but actual power cuts appear to be done in an arbitrary fashion. “I think this is very unreasonable. We do not know the day, more..

Hotel ground water to be tested

Sept 2 (NS) As groundwater in the Colombo area is confirmed contaminated with sewerage contents, all hotels in Colombo which use groundwater would have their water tested, CMC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Pradeep Kariyawasam said. He said, unless water samples were forwarded for tests, hotel licenses would not be renewed. Dr. Kariyawasam said the CMC would do a spot check on the water samples forwarded for tests to ascertain whether the correct samples were sent for testing. more..

MILCO goes down the drain

Sept 2 (NS) A bitter batter has erupted within the MILCO with a section accusing the management of spilling extra milk. MILCO Chairman Sunil Wickramasingha rejected such allegations while milk producers claim that the story of spilling extra milk emanated from within the MILCO. He said there was absolutely no truth in such speculations. “We have enough storage to store collected milk and our production has also increased over 40 percent during the past couple of months” more..

'We had plans for Tharjani'

Sept 2 (NS) Sri Lanka netball team who were dominating the 8th Asian Netball Championship until the final match, failed to cross the final frontier of defending their title as they lost 47-48 in an absolutely thrilling final against Singapore on Friday at Sugathadasa stadium. After regaining the title, Head coach of Singapore, Kate Carpenter said that her team had plans for Tharjani Sivalingam who Sri Lanka heavily depended on. more..

UNP lacking campaign topics – Govt

Sept 2 (CT) The main opposition, UNP is using the sacred Kapilavastu relics as a propaganda topic for the upcoming elections, the government charged. The SLFP Treasurer, Dullas Alahapperuma, refuting the claims of UNP General Secretary, Tissa Attanayake, that the government is flaunting the relics as they have nothing else to show, pointed out that the relics are being taken to nine different places in the country, including areas where elections are not taking place. more..

US, India help sought to tackle marine pollution

Sept 2 (CT) The govt will seek US and Indian expertise to tackle marine pollution, as 350 ships cruise through the Lankan waters daily compelling the country to take precautionary measures to protect its seas. Pollution concerns have become heightened with the emergence of new harbours in Hambantota and Kankesanthurai. Secretary to the Ministry of Environment, D.M.U.T. Basnayake, commenting on marine pollution in the backdrop of the recent mishap of a Greek oil ship more..

Leading hospitals to close RDs due to shortage of staff

Sept 2 (NS) An acute shortage of radiographers has forced the closure of the radiographers departments in leading hospitals island wide. The closure was despite the availability of qualified graduates to fill the vacuum, Radiological Technologists Association charged. The Association is threatening to stop giving practical training to diploma holders at the National Hospital’s School of Radiographers, insisting that graduates from more..

Hog deer faces threat of extinction

Sept 2 (LB) The hog deer (Aics porcunis) has been classified as a deer species that is facing the threat of extinction in Sri Lanka, since the year 2007. According to environmentalists, of the four varieties of the deer family that are found in Sri Lanka, the rarest is the hog deer. The other three types of the species have been identified as the Ceylon hog deer, the paddy field deer and the swamp deer. They have been included into a red list as well, and are said to spread on a limited basis, more..

Hulugalle writes on houses for Borella-Wanathamulla residents

Sept 2 (ST) Lakshman Hulugalle, Director General, Media Centre for National Security, Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, has written to us relating to a story that appeared in the Sunday Times of April 17, last year under the heading “Demolition for Development,” stating as follows; “The article published in your newspaper on 17-04-2011 states that the people who have been removed from the houses in Borella and Wanathamulla more..

North Central Province doctors’ token strike withheld

Sept 2 (AD) The Government Medical Officers’ Association has temporarily called off the token strike scheduled for tomorrow in all hospitals in the North Central Province, over the assault on a doctor in Anuradhapura. The Executive Committee of the association is to visit the Anuradhapura Hospital tomorrow to assess the situation, and therefore a decision will be taken afterwards, GMOA spokesman Dr. Naveen more..

Police raise alarm as child drowns

Sept 2 (CG) The police have raised concerns over school children going for a bath in rivers or at sea while on a school outing, after a child from a school in Maharagama drowned this afternoon. The 12 year old child had been with her friends from the Maharagama school who were taking part in a cricket tournament this afternoon. Following the tournament she and her friends had gone for a swim in a river in the Sewanagala police area. Three students had then been washed away while bathing but two of them were subsequently rescued, more..

Norochcholai to be recommissioned tomorrow?

Sept 2 (AD) The CEB today said that the process of repairing the Lakvijaya coal power plant in Norochcholai has neared completion and that they intend to recommission the plant tomorrow. Repairs at the power plant have currently been completed successfully, therefore we intend to recommission it tomorrow evening, the CEB Vice President Anura Vijepala said. The breakdown at the Chinese-built power station was initially caused due to a malfunction of a turbine, and following more..

Sri Lankan minister rushes to UK over travel advisory

Sept 2 (Xinhua) Sri Lanka External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris left for London over the weekend in an attempt to meet British officials and urge them to withdraw a travel advisory on Sri Lanka, a govt official said on Sunday. External Affairs Ministry Secretary Karunatilleke Amunugama said that Peiris was hopeful of meeting his counterpart though it was still not confirmed. The advisory states there is an upsurge in nationalism and more..

Kuliyapitiya PS chairman arrested

Sept 2 (CG) The chairman of the Kuliyapitiya Pradeshiya Sabha (PS), Sampath Susantha, was arrested today over an incident which occurred on Friday. According to the police media unit, the PS chairman was the main suspect over an attack on two houses in Kuliyapitiya on Friday night. Following investigations the police had found that the Kuliyapitiya Pradeshiya Sabha chairman Sampath Susantha had been involved. The police arrested him as well as six others today after more..

Two drown following boat crash

Sept 2 (DM) Two persons were drowned this evening after the boat they were travelling in crashed into an old concrete pillar on the Dandugan Oya area in Ja-ela. Police Headquarters said that the boat had been racing against other boats and traveling at speed on the Dandugan Oya. At time of the accident there had been five people aboard the boat. Three had managed to escape and been rescued by the people of the area. The other two were found to be dead when they were more..

Jayalalithaa orders sending back Lankan football team

Sept 2 (MO) In line with her strident stance against Sri Lanka, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa Sunday ordered sending back a Lankan football team home and suspension of a state official for allowing them to play a friendly match here. Jayalalithaa's action came two days after the team from Royal College, Colombo, played a match against Customs Department. She said she has directed Chief Secretary Debendranath more..

28 detained TN fishermen reach Nagapattinam

Sept 2 (PTI) Twenty-eight Tamil Nadu fishermen, who were let-off with a warning after being detained by Sri Lankan Naval personnel on charge of entering the island waters in the Palk Strait, reached here on Sunday. The fishermen had gone for deep sea fishing on August 29 and drifted towards Lankan waters on September 1 due to strong winds. Sri Lankan Navy reportedly intercepted them near Kankesanthurai port and detained them. Though the fishermen said they were fishing in more..

President requests all political groups not to manipulate use students for political mileage

Sept 2 (SLBC) President Mahinda Rajapaksa requests all political groups not to use students as cat’s paw to gain political mileage. Some political parties are attempting to manipulate students in school and higher education institutes to achieve their political targets. President points out that ruining the future of students by destroying their confidence on the present education system is a heinous crime. The President made these remarks addressing the 61st anniversary more..

Sri Lanka the Colour of a Culture

Tennis nationals: Young guns knock on champs’ doors

Sept 3 (SL) AS awards ceremonies go, the one staged at the conclusion of the 97th. National Tennis Championships, Sunday, lacked none of the customary frills. The stage was pitched on the sun-lit court facing the clubhouse, to where dancing damsels and drummers led chief guest, Aslam Omar, Brandix director, and sponsor Airtel’s Theodore Gunasekera, head of supply chain management of the mobile phone giant. more..

Of this, that and the other

Sept 3 (SL) As the title suggests, this week’s column will be a potpourri of topics set down randomly, with no attempt at prioritization of any kind. The Federation of University Teachers’ Association held what was, by all accounts, a very successful rally which not only attracted a very large crowd but also brought about a demonstrated commitment to joint protest and action from a broad spectrum of organized labour which was without recent precedent. more..

'SLMC with govt, no alliance with TNA'

Sept 3 (SO) The SLMC General Secretary M.T. Hassen Ali said that they are with the govt although they are contesting the Eastern PC polls on their own tree symbol. The recent resignation of their party Chairman Basheer Segu Dawood from his position as Deputy Minister was his own decision and it was not a collective decision of the party, he said. The speculation that they may form an alliance with the TNA if an adequate more..

FUTA can and must rise above unionism

Sept 3 (CT) The trade union action launched by the Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (FUTA) has entered its third month. The universities are closed. Negotiations between FUTA and relevant authorities do not indicate any signs of quick resolution. FUTA is now threatening to boycott A/L paper marking and has won the support of various teacher unions to keep away as well. It is heartening that academics have thought fit to embrace the larger issue of more..

Lies, lies and more lies as President triumphs over lies

Sept 3 (CT) Being suspicious of the outcome of the Provincial council elections the President insisted to appear in a live program “Janapathi Janahamuwa” which was broadcasted by the national and private television stations for three long hours. He gave a very convincing speech as well as hopes to the people who are facing the upcoming election. He called upon all government officials to execute all projects and attend to repairs immediately more..

Sangakkara rarin’ to go after injury

Sept 3 (NS) Kumar Sangakkara, currently the no. 1 ranked ICC Test batsman and leading contender for four ICC awards including the Cricketer of the Year is raring to pick up his bat and get started in doing the job he is best at, that is accumulating runs for his country and bringing them as many victories as possible in all three formats of the game. Sangakkara was forced to have a break from cricket after he fractured his finger more..

Lanka scores with peace talk at NAM, strenghtens ties with China, India

Sept 3 (NS) The week continued to be dominated by the twin crises that have plagued the country in the month of August, education and power. These hogged the headlines, sidelining the provincial council elections. President Mahinda Rajapaksa, meanwhile attended the 16th Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Tehran in Iran on Thursday and Friday. In his address during the opening session, the President asserted that Sri Lanka continues to support multilateral efforts to more..

All eyes on PC Elections

Sept 3 (NS) Three provinces will go to the polls on Saturday in what is likely to be another cycle of elections that will eventually span the country. This contest will be crucial because they would be construed as a mid-term measure of the govt’s popularity. The country has had a surfeit of elections in the last few years and the majority has been won by the ruling UPFA but these victories have been influenced by the conclusion of the Eelam war. That the govt exploited its role in the defeat of the LTTE is no secret. more..

Slept with bodies after killing parents and sister

Sept 3 (NS) The most gruesome murders in the annals of Sri Lankan criminal history was recorded, when a 28 year-old son killed his father, mother and sister and slept that night with the three cadavers on the same bed. Outsmarting the chapters of the late Justice A.C. Alles’ book ‘Murders of Sri Lanka’ where the famous Dough House murder, Sathasivam murder, Padmini Kularatne murder, Prof Chandrasekara Dias more..

Facing an Uncertain Future: A ‘non-suba anagathayak’

Sept 3 (GV) While the so-called ‘rulers’ prance about in their hubris, ignoring the global events that will also affect us, there is very serious concern that ‘We Are ‘Entering A Long-Term And Politically Dangerous Food Crisis’. The author of the study suggests that, ‘we are five years into a severe global food crisis that is very unlikely to go away. It will threaten poor countries with increased malnutrition and starvation and even collapse. Resource squabbles and waves of food-induced more..

Travelling in a capitalist vehicle through socialist crowds in an earlier era

Sept 3 (DBS) I was saddened to hear about the thugs in Anuradhapura assaulting a doctor because he wanted to move unhindered on a road. If the story reported is accurate, this is a terrible thing. It reminds me of something that happened just before the 1970 elections. At that time, my grandfather William Gopallawa had a personal car that was Mercedes 220S which was not very common in Sri Lanka. A lot of people used to mistake it for a “Loththarai kaar ekak” or a “lottery car” more..

'Let’s put market back on track'

Sept 3 (FT) The newly-appointed Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Dr. Nalaka Godahewa’s key message to the Secretariat staff last week after assuming duties was: Get the stock market back on track and he along with the rest of the Commissioners will stick to the Act and give necessary leadership to both pragmatic regulation and capital market development. Upon assuming duties, Dr. Godahewa met with the Directors more..

Money lender, four-year-old daughter gunned down in cold blood

Sept 3 (SO) Police suspect the gunman and his companion who were riding a motorcycle in a rubber estate last week to be professional killers who had a mission to accomplish. They had arrived at Polhena in Millewa when darkness enveloped the area. The gunman and his accomplice wore helmets to hide their identity. They were found hanging around in a lonely place in a suspicious manner. The time was around 7.p.m. when they parked their motorcycle at an intersection almost more..

People left behind: How inclusive is inclusive growth?

Sept 3 (ST) Poverty amidst growth is a much debated issue these days. The poverty paradigm has shifted from poverty reduction to inclusive growth as the process of rapid economic growth has left out large numbers of people from meaningful participation in their societies. Inclusive growth is concerned not merely with income inequality, but all dimensions of poverty and embraces both income and non-income dimensions of well-being. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) contends more..

Animal sacrifice at kovil: No permanent solution arrived at as yet

Sept 3 (ST) A 500-year-old ancient kovil ritual of animal sacrifice in Chilaw was put on hold after President Mahinda Rajapaksa intervened and requested that the practice be suspended till the sacred Kapilavastu relics brought from India leave the country, while a senior official of the Buddha Sasana and Religious Affairs Ministry said there are no discussions taking place right now on a possible solution. more..

CRTA wary on prices as major rubber producers curb exports

Sept 3 (FT) Attempts by the three major rubber producing countries – Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia – to stabilise the market price of rubber by restricting exports and raising prices will propel local the rubber industry to follow suit with similar rises. Colombo Rubber Traders Association Chairman M.S. Rahim said that if the countries cut exports by a total of 300,000 tons to shore up prices, Sri Lanka will have to follow suit, increasing the prices of local rubber. more..

Mudalige out; Kalinga in

Sept 3 (FT) The SEC is likely to get a new Commissioner following the Government's decision to make a change as opposed to the previous move. A Finance Ministry official confirmed there has been a change but didn’t give details. Previously Pricewaterhouse-Coopers Partner and former Ex-Officio Commissioner Sujeewa Mudalige was named among new appointees but has since been dropped. He is expected to be replaced by lawyer Kalinga Indatissa. more..

The ship that sank

Sept 3 (SL) The Sunday Leader was the first to reveal that the ship anchored off Moratuwa, which has now sunk, was on the verge of sinking. Even though the govt and naval authorities have been saying that the ship was anchored off the seas of Panadura, The Sunday Leader can state with authority that the actual location of the ship is off the shores of Angulana, Moratuwa. S.A.L. Munasinghe, an engineer who was working more..

HSBC Borneo Rugby 7s: Sri Lanka soars high to claim Bowl title

Sept 3 (Island) Sri Lankan national sevens ruggerites put behind the day one heartbreak to win the Bowl title of the HSBC Asian sevens series-Borneo sevens by beating hosts Malaysia 19-12 in the final at Likas stadium, Sabah, Malaysia yesterday. The Sri Lankans after lagging behind 7-12 at half-time came back roaring with the two tries coming from Navy’s Dinusha Chathuranga and Upcountry Lions’s Vishvamithra Jayasinghe. more..