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'This is a death alarm to Tamils freedom for expression'

Apr 4 (OU) The continuous attack carried out against “Udayan” press is a death alarm to the Sri Lankan Tamils freedom of expression was said by TNA Secretary Mawai Senathiraja. He said "Udayan" which is one of the media establish the national emotions of Sri Lanka Tamil people, has once again come under violence attack. The "Udayan" regional office located at Jaffna Kandy main road, Kilinochchi, was attacked by a gang of thugs with batons at around 5 am and more..

SAITM to open new teaching hospital on Saturday

Apr 4 (CT) The South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) will be opening its proposed teaching hospital on Saturday, SAITM Director, Dr. Sameera Senaratne said. A large number of teacher and student unions are against SAITM, alleging the private college is below standards and not suitable to teach medicine as it lacked basic facilities such as a teaching hospital. However, Dr. Senaratne refuted the claims saying SAITM is well-equipped, with the latest up-to-date facilities. more..

KDU to get new multimillion dollar Teaching Hospital

Apr 4 (MoD) A Supplementary Contract Agreement was signed to construct a teaching hospital for the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University, today at the Defence Ministry premises. The agreement was signed between the Vice Chancellor of the KDU Major General Milinda Peiris and Mr. Wang Xingye, Vice President of Poly Technologies Inc. of China in the presence of Secretary Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa. more..

Govt. imports spuds; 40,000 farmers left in the lurch

Apr 4 (Island) Around 40,000 farmers were in trouble as the govt had permitted potato imports, the UNP said. UNP MP Harin Fernando said that while allowing a free flow of potatoes into the country, the authorities had also directed the farmers not to sell their produce below Rs.75 a kilo, but people were not buying potatoes at such prices. When the farmers’ assistants were included, over 75,000 persons in Bandaragama, Uva Parnagama, Welimada, Bandarawela and Nuwara Eliya more..

SL's murky power utility costs under fire

Apr 4 (LBO) Costs claimed by Sri Lanka's power monopoly CEB are murky, the efficiency of expensive plants and other costs are not independently audited, respondents at a public hearing on a proposed tariff hike said. Tilak Siyambalapitiya, a top energy sector expert said the basis on which power plants were to be used in 2013 (dispatch schedule) was unknown. The dispatch schedule was not according to the tariff methodology required by the regulator but more..

'No boycott of Indians goods at Colombo port'

Apr 4 (DM) None of the Port workers will refuse to unload Indian goods that arrive in Colombo as mentioned in some media reports, Deputy Minister Rohitha Abeygunawardana said. “There were reports regarding a protest by a port employees’ organisation, which said that their members will refrain from handling or processing Indian supplies due to the situation in Tamil Nadu. I am confident that such a situation more..

UNP accuses govt. of creating a ‘Casinodeepayak’

Apr 4 (Island) UNP Kalutara MP Ajith P. Perera accused the govt of attempting to transform the country into a ‘Casinodeepayak’ (Casino land), instead of a ‘Dharmapdeepayak’ (Land of Dhamma). Perera vehemently condemned the govt for trying to use the casino business to boost the economy and called upon the Maha Nayake Theras to protest against its harebrained project and even revoke the honorary title, Shri Rohana Janaranjana, the Maha Sangha conferred on the incumbent more..

Luxury vehicle tax asked to be paid directly to Motor Traffic Dept

Apr 4 (DM) Owners of luxury, semi-luxury and semi-luxury dual purpose vehicles will now have to pay all taxes payable to the Department of Motor Traffic (DMT) before the expiry of 60 days from the anniversary date of the vehicle registration or end of the tax year or whichever comes first. This is opposed to the current practice of paying taxes at the time of renewing the motor insurance policy. These payments are collected by the respective insurance companies on behalf of the Motor more..

India-funded vocational training centre inaugurated in Nuwara Eliya

Apr 4 (HCI) The High Commissioner of India Ashok K. Kantha visited Helboda, Nuwara Eliya district, Central Province on 2 April. During the visit, the High Commissioner, along with Minister Dullas Alahapperuma inaugurated the Vocational Training Centre (VTC) at Helboda. At the event, the High Commissioner handed over advanced technology equipment, vehicles and books worth SLR 65 million, in the presence of Minister more..

Treasure hunters arrested with human sacrifice

Apr 4 (DN) Eppawala Police arrested 12 suspects planning to hunt for artefacts in an archaeologically significant location in Pothanegama and rescued a four-year-old girl on Tuesday. The suspects had brought the girl as human sacrifice with the intention of obtaining a treasure, the Police said. The Police also took into custody an oxygen cylinder, two oxygen guns, 14 polysacks and other implements. The girl was handed over to the Jayanthi Children’s home. The suspects produced before more..

Tug of war between docs and PHIs continues in Polonnaruwa

Apr 4 (Island) Public Health Inspectors in the Polonnaruwa District threatened to strike today if the Secretary of their union was not released from the Hingurakgoda MoH office to engage in trade union activities. Doctors attached to hospitals coming under the North Central Provincial Council in the Polonnaruwa district struck work on Tuesday demanding an investigation against the PHI union’s secretary and his immediate transfer. They suspended the strike on an assurance more..

Divi Naguma to open 407 Avurudu fairs island-wide

Apr 4 (MED) The Economic Development Ministry has made arrangements to have Avurudu fairs under the Divi Neguma national program in the 407 main towns of Division secretariat for the Sinhala-Hindu New Year season. The fairs will be open to the public from April 5 to April 12 (9am to 8pm). The objective of organizing these fairs is to provide items essential for the festive season such as clothes, textiles, more..

Karu says democratic dissent in north under attack

Apr 4 (FT) UNP MP Karu Jayasuriya warned that dissent in the Northern Province is under attack judging by the assault on the Uthayan newspaper office in Kilinochchi. Following is the full statement issued by MP Jayasuriya. “Once again the right of the people in the North to hold dissenting opinion has been threatened. The latest example is the attack on the office of the Uthayan newspaper by goons. According to the govt, democratic rights have been established not only in the North but more..

Some nurses threaten tougher action unless ...

Apr 4 (Island) The Govt Nursing Officers’ Association (GNOA) has said that the protest staged yesterday is only a warning and if the govt fails to heed their demands, including the implementation of delayed promotions for 4,000 nurses, they will resort to stronger trade union action shortly. GNOA President Saman Ratnapriya said that senior nurses waiting for promotions had passed all required examinations but the Public Service Commission was yet to make its recommendations. more..

Army told to safeguard image

Apr 4 (CG) Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya told the army in Jaffna today to safeguard the good image of the organization at all times. He said this after greeting troops at the 55 Division Headquarters in Vettalakerni, the army media unit said. The army media unit said that the Commander called upon all the troops to commit firmly to the development of the country while safeguarding the good image more..

We condemn attack on 'Udayan' – JVP

Apr 4 (LT) The JVP has condemned the attack on 'Udayan' newspaper office in Killinochchi and states the attack is not only a mere attack on a media office and an attempt to sabotage the distribution of its newspaper but it is a deplorable attempt to grab the right of the masses for information. The JVP press release: The media reported that the Killinochchi office of 'Udayan' newspaper published in Jaffna was attacked today (3) morning by a group of unidentified persons, four people were more..

Sri Lanka for time bound implementation of LLRC

Apr 4 (PTI) The Sri Lankan govt is bracing for time-bound implementation of the recommendation of its reconciliation commission set up to promote national unity. Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said that the Cabinet had decided to implement the recommendations of the LLRC in a specific time frame. "The Secretary to the President at today's Cabinet meeting presented to the ministers a report on the progress of the action plan on all LLRC recommendations," Yapa said. more..

Court prevents Nishantha Ranatunga from being re-appointed as SLC Secretary

Apr 4 (NF) The Mount Lavinia District Court issued an enjoining order preventing Nishantha Ranatunga from being re-appointed to the Post of Secretary of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC). This order will be effective until April 18. The enjoining order also states that until April 18, the 22 individuals in the Executive Committee of SLC including its President cannot appoint convene or engage in any activities relating to SLC. more..

Why is Pakistan ignoring the lankan Muslim issue?

Apr 5 (CT) When the resolution against Sri Lanka was being tabled in Geneva, it was the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Hina Rabbani Khar, who appeared to be the busiest person, perhaps, even more so than our own Minister of External Affairs. She took special pains to instruct to the Pakistan High Commissioner in Geneva, Zamir Akram, to rope in the Muslim countries to defeat the resolution against Sri Lanka. Akram had separate discussions with the countries of the Organization for more..

In reverence of goddess Amman: Katpulaththu Manonmany Ambaal Temple

Apr 5 (DBS) Temple worship is an integral part of Hinduism. Illustrative of this “Kopuram” or the tower over the main entrance of the temple is splendidly covered with sculpted images of Hindu Gods and Goddesses, and celestial beings. The tower is meant to be visible from afar, so that devotees can even say their prayers from a distance. A popular Tamil saying goes “Kopura Tharisanam Kodi Punniyam” worshiping the tower of the temple is goodness in a million fold. more..

A friend turned foe

Apr 5 (CT) Tamil Nadu's film industry – or Kollywood, as it is known today – seems to be implacably hostile to Sri Lanka these days. In the latest event, its top stars sat on a day's fast at the Nadir Sangham (Actors' Guild) in Chennai on Tuesday, protesting against the alleged 'genocide' of the Tamils of Sri Lanka. Earlier, the Directors' Association had organized a day-long fast over the same issue. However, the current hostile more..

Gentlemen are recognized

Apr 5 (CT) “Gentlemen are recognized…” goes the introduction to a much repeated radio advertisement promoting a brand of men’s clothing , they ; “ … choose shirts with firm collars , neat cuts, send flowers to their mothers, walk old ladies across the road, are interesting and are not ‘ smelly’… ”. Apparently, apart from admiration of the opposite sex there are many bonuses awaiting the (Sri Lankan variety of )gentleman, including automatic up-grades at check-in counters, more..

‘Where every prospect pleases, man alone is vile’

Apr 5 (GV) The title of this article is a line from a beautifully haunting hymn written by Bishop Heber of Calcutta who, clearly, had an imperialistic mindset. He visited our island in 1825, and the hymn must have been written around that time. The next line reads, ‘The Heathen in his blindness bows down to wood and stone’. Because of the racism implicit in it, this hymn is no longer sung in most churches. But in the light of the extended anti-Muslim hysteria sweeping the country, we may need to pose more..

Boston Lanka: April 5, 2013

Immortality of frogs, scientists and politicians

Apr 5 (SL) A team of dedicated herpetologists (Herpetology: Study of reptiles) has discovered eight new species of frogs after a long period of search and study in the humid, rain-drenched, mosquito and leech infested jungles around Sri Pada. The discovery of eight unknown species, we are told by authoritative biologists, is quite an achievement. The modest scientists could have sought immortality by naming the newly discovered species after themselves, but in true scientific spirit more..

The Tiger, Sri Lanka’s Asiatic Lion and the China’s Dragon

Apr 5 (CT) Nigeria’s Central Bank Governor recently commented that “Africa must shake off its romantic view of China and accept Beijing as a competitor as much as a partner capable of the same exploitative practices as the old European colonial powers.” Governor Lamido Sanusi reflects the growing number of senior African bureaucrats who fear that Africa’s emerging industries are being drowned in a sea of cheap industrial products from China. He further said: “Africa is opening itself up to a more..

The three stumps of cricket’s ‘Dynasty’

Apr 5 (ST) I feel like writing the lyrics for a song for the famous American rock singer Axl Rose and ask him to render it to Sri Lanka cricket. Right now the Lankan cricket is between guns and roses. Just to elaborate a little, the financial roses have begun to bloom for the beleaguered cricket administration after reeling in a crisis for the past 15 months or so. Thus let the roses be on hold. It’s the guns which are firing have become more..

Garments: What happened and didn’t happen

Apr 5 (ST) There have been recent media reports on numerous difficulties and challenges faced by Sri Lankan garment industry. These difficulties were attributed to different reasons. Some hold the industry responsible for its failure to put the house in order and to improve the competitiveness. Others point fingers at the Government for its failure to retain the GSP plus facility. I wish to share some of my recollections and thoughts on this. My thoughts are erratic and my exposition is incomplete. more..

Former CEO of Deyata Kirula seeks anticipatory bail

Apr 5 (FT) The CEO of Deyata Kirula National Exhibition 2013 yesterday filed an anticipatory bail application in Court to pre-empt the possibility of her arrest over charges levelled by CID. In her petition, Kanthi Gunawardana, the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Telecommunication and Information Technology, cited the OIC of CID as respondent. Filing a B report in Court on 27 March, the CID informed Court that they had begun an investigation against the Deyata Kirula National Exhibition more..

Sri Lanka and Burkina Faso to strengthen south-south cooperation

Apr 5 (PRIU) The Senior Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation of Burkina Faso Mr. Yipene Djibrill Bassole called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa this morning at the Presidential Secretariat. While thanking the govt of Burkina Faso for its continued support to Sri Lanka in international fora, President Rajapaksa said Sri Lanka’s current foreign policy has prioritized expanding and strengthening bilateral more..

Editorial: A nation on the edge

Apr 5 (Island) Rape appears to be the favourite pastime of some UPFA politicians sozzled to the gills with power. Hardly a day passes without a sexual offence they commit being reported in the media. Some of them get into hot water for abusing women and children, but they do not have to worry; a lifeline is immediately thrown. It looks as if they hadn’t spared even Justitia, the Goddess of Justice. Perverting the course of justice or what remains thereof is their long suit. more..

School canteens to be inspected

Apr 5 (DN) Around 10 to 15% of Sri Lankan schoolchildren have diabetes and another 20% are obese. Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena will take action to formulate a mechanism to inspect school canteens through Public Health Inspectors, a Health Ministry spokesman said. The spokesman said this will carried out on a request by Minister Bandula Gunawardena to Minister Sirisena. He said a circular has been issued in connection with selling healthy food at school canteens but there is no more..

HSBC dials largest private sector ECA deal worth $ 100 m in Sri Lanka for Etisalat

Apr 5 (FT) HSBC yesterday announced the successful signing of a US$ 100 million facility supported by ONDD to Etisalat Lanka (ELPL), one of the largest mobile telecommunications companies in Sri Lanka. ONDD is the Belgium Export Credit Agency (ECA). This transaction becomes the largest ECA transaction in the Sri Lankan private sector to date and the first ECA financing to ELPL, the HSBC said. more..

CA Sri Lanka, Kelaniya University sign MoU to develop accounting education

Apr 5 (Island) The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA) and the University of Kelaniya (UoK) recently entered into a MoU which aims at developing and promoting the accounting education and the profession in the country. The MoU was signed by CA Sri Lanka President Sujeewa Rajapakse and Vice Chancellor of the Kelaniya University Prof. Sarath Amunugama. The primary objective of the agreement is to help promote and nurture the accounting more..

'Total destruction of the Tamil Tigers: The rare victory of Sri Lanka’s long war'

Apr 5 (TS) A strain of hawkish thought maintains that if armies were unencumbered by weak-willed politicians, pinkish concerns with human rights and above all the intrusions of the media they could rapidly snuff out the kind of insurrections that, in reality, needled them for years. In the American experience this line of thinking is wheeled out most often in relation to Vietnam — where television pictures did mould domestic public opinion. In the British case, Northern Ireland, with more..

Bodhu Bala Sena will form own Muslim unit to disprove charges of anti-Muslim racism

Apr 5 (DBS) In a bizarre move tinged with “black humour” the anti-Muslim, Bodhu Bala Sena (BBS) is planning to form its own Muslim unit within its organizational structure in the near future. According to informed sources close to the BBS, the organization will be revamping and expanding its organizational structure by establishing units at grass root level to promote social development. more..

AG has the right to withdraw a case – Yapa

Apr 5 (CT) The Attorney General (AG) has the right to withdraw any court case he deems as lacking evidence, Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, said yesterday. He was referring to AG Palitha Fernando’s decision to release the third and fourth suspects of the Kotakethana murder case, Godakawela Pradeshiya Sabha member L.H. Dharmasiri and Sanath ‘Chutimalli’ Nandana, along with Malaka Silva, Rehan Wijeratne and four other suspects allegedly involved in the assault more..

Video: “Don’t wake the lion” - Mervyn

Apr 5 (DM) Minister Mervyn Silva said that South India should not ‘awaken the lion and injure itself,’ referring to the recent events in Tamil Nadu. “We have a good relationship with Tamil Nadu and our president in all his wisdom will solve this issue. But I’m telling South India that it should not awaken the sleeping lion and injure itself,” he said. Referring to the current fast by South Indian actors and film directors against Sri Lanka, Mr. Silva said that if they were true heroes they would fast unto death. more..

Proposed electricity tariff unfair & unrealistic

Apr 5 (Island) The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) will take two weeks to study the recommendations of various stakeholders’ oral presentations at yesterday’s public consultation on the proposed electricity tariff for 2013, which concluded yesterday in Colombo, with many taking part saying the proposed tariff was unjust and unrealistic, although conceding some revision had to be made. more..

The 32nd attack on Uthayan office

Apr 5 (CT) Tamil newspaper Uthayan's Kilinochchi office was attacked earlier this week for the 32nd time, but the authorities have failed to apprehend a single perpetrator to date, for any of the attacks committed so far, FSP Propaganda Secretary, Pubudu Jagoda said. Jagoda claimed reports of media harassment are increasing at alarming frequency, especially as the Tamil newspaper Uthayan's Kilinochchi office was attacked earlier this week, making it the 32nd time that particular more..