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Opening in S’pore construction sector for Lankans

Apr 6 (DN) Fonda Global Engineering, a leading engineering and construction company from Singapore will open a training and testing center at Katunayake today that will help create competent and highly skilled construction personnel in Sri Lanka, whose skills will be on par with the best in the world. Those who undergo training and qualify through written exams and practical tests will be eligible for the internationally accredited SEC(K) certificate, awarded by the Building and more..

WDJ responds to oppn allegations on leadership training

Apr 6 (DN) Public Administration and Home Affairs Minister W D J Seneviratne denied allegations by political opponents that the leadership training programme for newly recruited graduates to the government service was a military training. Addressing a press briefing at the Information Department on Wednesday, he said the government took the decision to provide leadership training to the newly recruited graduates to make the public service more effective and efficient. more..

BJP threat to establish Eelam in SL: Govt. should reassess foreign policy – UNP

Apr 6 (Island) The failure of the govt to provide meaningful devolution to the North and East of the country, had resulted in India’s govt in waiting, Bharatha Janatha Party (BJP), threatening to carve out Eelam for Sri Lankan Tamils, the UNP said. UNP MP Lakshman Kiriella said that the BJP leader Yaswant Singh had said, in New Delhi on Thursday, that if the Rajapaksa regime continued to play games more..

Salusala Board of Directors sentenced for six months over EPF non-payment

Apr 6 (FT) Board of Directors of Salusala was handed a six-month jail sentence by the Colombo Additional Magistrate Tikiri K Jayathilake for not paying EPF dues for its employees despite agreeing to comply with a ruling previously given by Court. The ruling was on the basis that the Board and Salusala were in a position to make outstanding EPF contributions on a staggered basis yet had not made such arrangements. The Additional Magistrate directed the Labour Commissioner to more..

Future of SLPL in jeopardy!

Apr 6 (Island) Following a case filed by former Sri Lanka ‘A’ cricket coach Stan Nell, against Somerset Entertainment Ventures (Singapore) Pte Ltd., requesting the latter to pay him a sum of US$800,000, the High Court of Colombo has ordered that the commercial rights of teams taking part in the Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPA), owned by Somerset Entertainment Ventures, to be frozen. This jeopardizes the staging of the tournament. Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), was informed last more..

Indian parliamentary team to visit Sri Lanka

Apr 6 (Hindu) A delegation of six Indian MPs will visit Sri Lanka between April 8 and April 12. They will also visit Colombo and Jaffna during the trip, which is being organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). In addition to meetings with MPs here, the members are likely to meet senior Ministers and political leaders. “The MPs will also visit Jaffna to look at work on projects more..

Editorial: India’s Supreme Court puts Patients before Patents

Apr 6 (DM) In a historic judgment that could have positive effects for patients worldwide, India’s Supreme Court has ruled that the lives of patients are more important than the patent rights of trans-national drug companies. The landmark ruling that gave relief to cancer patients will help them to continue to buy life-saving drugs under their generic names. The Supreme Court ruled that the modification of a well-known cancer-fighting drug was not a patentable new invention. more..

The answer lies in Dialogue

Apr 6 (DM) The year 2001 was declared as the “International Year of Dialogue among Civilizations” which was a logical sequel to the celebration, in 2000, of the “International Year for the Culture of Peace.” The aim was to provide impetus to plan and implement appropriate cultural, educational and social programmes to promote the concept of dialogue among civilizations, including organizing conferences and seminars and disseminating information and scholarly material on the more..

Beyond the fields of Kilinochchi

Apr 6 (SL) Kilinochchi, a town that was most affected by the 30 year conflict in Sri Lanka is located in the heart of the Northern Province with a floating population of 135,605, many of whom were displaced in the conflict. These displaced families underwent severe trauma having lost many of their family members during the conflict. Even though the conflict ended, their current status has been a severe impediment to normalize their lives. more..

High prices drive Avurudu shoppers away

Apr 6 (ST) It’s going to be an expensive National New Year this time. This was the general sentiment among shoppers in Pettah, the place where many head to, to get a good bargain during any festive season. P.H Wijedasa, a public sector employee from Elpitiya was among those who the Sunday Times spoke to to gauge the mood among shoppers. “With the fuel and gas price increases the prices of food items have gone up and more..

Doordarshan faces ire of Sri Lanka protestors

Apr 6 (ENS) Twelve activists of the Puducherry Students Federation (PSF) were arrested when they pelted stones on the office of Doordarshan Kendra here, protesting against the channel’s “inadequate” coverage of the anti-Lanka agitation. Earlier, the activists attempted to picket the office. PSF leader Saminathan said that the agitation was to condemn DD’s non-telecast of the Channel Four documentaries on the atrocities on Tamils more..

PHIs to continue raids on food outlets countrywide

Apr 6 (Island) The Public Health Inspectors’ Union of Sri Lanka (PHIUSL) warned they would continue countrywide raids during the current festive season. Secretary of the PHIUSL, Senarath Bandara said that they had raided over 40 eateries in the Medirigiriy and Dayasiripura areas yesterday morning. Bandara said they had taken legal action against 15 places for retailing food items that had passed their shelf life, unhygienic more..

Ethanol ban lifted

Apr 6 (CT) The got yesterday lifted the ban on ethanol imports, which it imposed only one month ago. According to gazette notification, the import of ethanol has been liberalized with no upper limit to its strength. Earlier, the strength of spirit imported into the country stood at 80% and below. Commissioner General of Excise, Wasantha Happuarachchi, said since the upper limit of the strength of spirits that can be imported into more..

Search on for next envoy to Sri Lanka

Apr 6 (ENS) The Ministry of External Affairs is still searching for a suitable candidate for the next Indian envoy to Sri Lanka, following the present incumbent, Ashok Kantha set to be the new Secretary (East) and take up his post from next month. Kantha, whose name has been sent to the Appointment Committee of Cabinet for approval, will be succeeding Sanjay Singh, who will retire at the end of April. In the corridors of South Block, more..

CPC pays Rs 200 M as O/T

Apr 6 (CT) The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) spends a whopping sum of Rs 200 million as overtime payment to its employees every month, a CPC trade unionist claimed. The trade unionist said CPC Managing Director (MD), Susantha Silva, is paid a monthly salary of US$ 4,000 (Rs 520,000), in addition to a company maintained vehicle worth Rs 17 million. He is also given a mobile phone worth Rs 40,000 more..

Sri Lanka navy arrests 26 Indian fishermen

Apr 6 (Xinhua) The Sri Lankan navy on Saturday arrested 26 Indian fishermen who were poaching in Sri Lankan waters off the northern seas. The navy said that the Indians were on five trawlers when they were detected and arrested for entering Sri Lankans waters illegally. Navy spokesman said that the Indian fishermen were to be brought to Kayts islands in the north to be handed over to local fisheries department officials. more..

UAE: Don’t deport Tamil refugees to Sri Lanka

Apr 6 (HRW) United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities should not deport 19 Tamil refugees to Sri Lanka because they would be at serious risk of torture and persecution upon return. The UNHCR has recognized all 19 as refugees, but the UAE authorities have told the group they must leave the country by April 11, 2013. “For the UAE to return recognized Tamil refugees to a grave risk of torture in Sri Lanka would signal a total disregard for more..

Scrapping of presidency a broken promise of all leaders – Prelate

Apr 6 (Island) All party leader pledged, during elections, to scrap the executive presidency but none of them had kept their pledge when they came to power, observed the prelate of Malwatte Chapter receiving a copy of an amendment to the Constitution from Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhitha Thera, president of the National Movement for a Just Society (NMJS) on Thursday. The proposed amendment stated more..

April 1971 JVP uprising: Not to make the same mistakes

Apr 6 (CT) It was still Ceylon. The JVP cadres were supposed to attack all possible police stations simultaneously on 5 April night in a bid to trigger a ‘revolution’ but the impatient members in Wellawaya made the attack a day before unintentionally alerting the police and the government. Perhaps they received the wrong instructions about the date. Those days unlike today, the armed forces were so small and the police was the main bastion of the State. Capturing power in that fashion by more..

Editorial: The dirtiest game of all

Apr 6 (CT) Is Sri Lanka now about to see the final score of what must have been the longest match behind closed doors? The heady issue pertains to the coveted chairmanship of the Sri Lanka Cricket Board. This time it must be for real. A shoot-out to the death for one party and all this in the name of justice, fair-play and democracy, which had taken a beating over the past 10 years or more, as Sports Minister after Sports Minister sat on the throne, turned a deaf ear to the rampant more..

Power users urge CEB to automate dispatch

Apr 6 (LBO) Sri Lanka's power users are urging state-run CEB to automate decision on connecting generators to match demand to cut costs and dispel suspicions of not having used the lowest cost plant. Generators are now connected and disconnected or 'dispatched' manually by the CEB, based on a 'merit order' which lists plants from the cheapest to the most expensive. The cost may depend on the duration a plant is more..

The silent majority: Sharing some thoughts

Apr 6 (CT) “The majority of Sri Lankans are fair-minded, decent and generous. This majority shouldn’t be silent but, for the sake of the Island, unite and speak out against the extremists.” Such and other similar sentiment are not uncommon, and quite understandable. “The silent majority” is a phrase, a claim and an appeal that one encounters not uncommonly in different countries and contexts, and with different implications. Often, it seems to me, it’s a small group that uses the more..

Solar Power electricity for Mannar mooted

Apr 6 (DN) Plans are afoot to promote solar power based electricity, specially in the fields of agricultural and irrigation development in the Mannar district. This plan is also expected to provide solar power electricity to remote villages such as, Vidathaltivu etc. Thantirimale and the surroundings areas extending to about 3,000 acres will be provided water from the Malwathuoya reservoir project using large scale solar power electricity under a lift irrigation scheme. more..

Special unit to act on complaints against private hospitals

Apr 6 (DM) A special unit is being set up to handle public complaints against private healthcare institutions and take punitive action where necessary. It is based on a directive by Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena to Director General Health Services (DGHS) to set up a special unit under the Private Health Services Regulatory Council Act (PHSRA) of 2008 after receiving shocking information about ‘black marketing’ more..

Alert neighbours save family of three from tragedy

Apr 6 (Island) Concerned neighbours in Dumkolawatta, Matale on Wednesday morning, saved a family of three — 25-year-old husband, 21-year-old wife and their three-year-old daughter from certain death. According to the police the couple had attempted to kill their daughter by poisoning her and then took poison themselves over a trivial family dispute. The incident occurred on Wednesday morning and the police had been informed of the incident by the hospital authorities. more..

‘Every time I write, I think of my land’

Apr 6 (Hindu) Theepachelvan, christened Balenndram Pratheepan, is the author of 11 books, including five collections of poems, three of articles, one compendium of short stories of people from the war-scarred land, and one anthology of poems by Eelam poets. His most recent book, Pray for My Land, is a collection of poems translated into English. Born in 1983, his writings bear the imprint of the war on the life of a young boy who cowered as IPKF tanks moved past, of a child who more..

SLC expects financial assistance from govt

Apr 6 (CI) Sri Lanka Cricket expects govt assistance to pay for the two new stadia that were the prime contributors to the board's financial disarray, even though it has wiped over $8 million from its debt since January 2012, SLC treasurer Nuski Mohamed has said. SLC owed almost $70 million after building international venues in Hambantota and Pallekele, as well as renovating Colombo's Premadasa Stadium. more..

UPFA former PC members to cross over

Apr 6 (CT) Several former provincial councillors of the UPFA in Galewela and Dambulla areas, are considering to contest the forthcoming Central Provincial Council Elections, on the UNP ticket. Some of them are powerful politicians in the area, and among them is a former deputy chairman of a Pradeshiya Sabha. The number of councillors who expect to cross over are three but it may increase to 11 in the future. A UPFA politician said he took the decision to cross over because more..

Drive to popularize traditional rice varieties

Apr 6 (DN) The Agriculture Ministry has embarked on a programme to popularize traditional rice varieties. Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena said since the country is self-sufficient in rice, the ministry's aim is to expand the cultivation of local varieties of rice. Local paddy production is 4,200,000 metric tons which is 13 percent more than the local requirement. Paddy varieties such as Kalu Heenati, Kurulu Thuda, Pachcha Perumal, Suwandel, Mawee, Hetada wee, Pokkaliyan more..

Kidney patients die while nurses take over rooms meant for post-op care doctors

Apr 6 (Island) Many patients awaiting kidney transplant have died and those seeking medical and surgical attention are in despair as the Maligawatte Kidney Transplant Centre had been defunct for the last three years, due to a tug o’war between the doctors and nurses attached to the hospital, the Govt Medical Officers Forum revealed. GMOF member Dr. N.A.H. Senaratne accused Health Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka and more..

Plea for setting up Indo-Lanka Marines Disputes Authority

Apr 6 (PTI) National Fish Workers Forum General Secretary M.Ilango today sought formation of an Indo-Sri Lanka Marine Disputes Authority to find a permanent solution to end the "sufferings" of Indian fishermen,allegedly at the hands of Sri Lankan Navy while fishing. Ilango said in a statement around 25 fishermen from Karaikal were taken into custody by the Lankan navy yesterday. He said a fisherman of Karaikal region was injured last month when Lankan navy allegedly fired at a group of fishermen. more..

A Gota loyalist to be appointed as the VC of University of Colombo

Apr 6 (CT) SLFP University teachers’ Union is said to have lobbied the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Gotabaya Rajapaksa to get a candidate of their choice appointed to the post of Vice Chancellor, University of Colombo and got an assurance that their wish will be granted. Hence, it is expected that any time soon the President will sign the letter of appointment for this candidate. It is said that if the President accedes to the demand of Gotabaya Rajapaksa the person thus more..

Unbeaten Lanka on track for Asian Rugby World Cup Qualifier spot

Apr 6 (E24|7) With the stakes sky-high, Kazakhstan coach and former captain Timur Mashurov is mulling coming out of retirement and donning his boots for Saturday’s HSBC Asian Five Nations Top 5-or-bust encounter against unbeaten Sri Lanka. Mashurov, who last captained Kazakhstan in 2011, has been forced into the decision after lock-forward Anton Makarenko was suspended for three weeks for a dangerous more..

Udul stages ‘satyagraha’ against Meethotamulla garbage dump

Apr 6 (AD) A group of activists are staging an indefinite “satyagraha” until authorities provide them with a written assurance that disposal of waste at Meethotamulla in Kolonnawa will be halted. Residents in the area this morning had held a protest in front of the land used for the dumping of waste collected from the city of Colombo, demanding authorities to provide a solution. Later the ‘People’s Movement Against the Meethotamulla Garbage Dump’ launched a more..

DMK, TESO to strive to shift CHOGM out of Sri Lanka

Apr 6 (IANS) DMK president M. Karunanidhi said Saturday his party MPs and Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation (TESO) meeting would meet the envoys of various countries in London to press for shifting the CHOGM out of Sri Lanka. In a statement issued here, Karunanidhi, reiterating his demand that CHOGM slated to be held later this year should be shifted out of Colombo, said on behalf of TESO it has been requested that the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) should more..

There is little to suggest Sri Lanka’s Muslim population harbors extremists – US

Apr 6 (CT) “In Sri Lanka there is no intelligence to indicate that the LTTE are interested in conducting attacks against western targets inside or outside of Sri Lanka and there is little to suggest that Sri Lanka’s Muslim population harbors extremist elements. However, the LTTE’s regional illicit weapons transportation network and terrorism financing efforts remain a significant concern.” the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington. more..

Geetha hit me with a mug of coffee: PS Vice Chairman

Apr 6 (DM) Bentara-Elpitiya Pradeshiya Sabha Vice Chairman Ranjith Wickramasinghe charged that Bentara Elpitiya SLFP organiser Geetha Kumarasinghe had hit him with a mug of coffee during a party meeting held recently. He said Ms. Kumarasinghe scolded him bitterly and hit him with the mug when he pointed out that the Bentara-Elpitiya area had been looked down upon due to her bad conduct. ‘An opposition member had raised a question that sending letters to Grama more..

'The feeling that leadership is service has deteriorated'

Apr 6 (NF) Representatives of the National Movement for Social Justice met with the Archbishop of Colombo His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith on Friday. The representatives of the National Movement for Social Justice handed over their suggestions for immediate constitutional reform to His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith at this occasion. Archbishop of Colombo, Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith expressed this view 'The Sinis event was held in October 2010. more..

It's upto individual players to play in IPL or not: de Silva

Apr 6 (PTI) Former captain Aravinda de Silva chose to react diplomatically over Sri Lankan cricketers' exclusion from the IPL matches in Chennai by stating that the players were grown up enough to take their own decisions in life. "They're all grown up enough to decide what they want to do in life. They understand the situation well and I think those guys decided to go," de Silva said on Saturday. The IPL's governing council has decided more..

Police to arrest snake girl

Apr 6 (CG) The police say they will arrest Nirosha Wimalaratne, also known as the cobra girl or snake girl, once to arrives in the country from overseas. According to the police, the arrest will be made based on the court order issued this week. The Court ordered her arrest as she had failed to appear in court over a case. The 21-year-old ‘Cobra Girl’ from Colombo had been arrested last year after being charged for keeping a snake in her possession under the Animals Ordinance more..