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'Sri Lankan Americans be Ambassadors of goodwill for your motherland'

Aug 8 (USE) The Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC brought Sri Lanka’s public diplomacy to new heights in its latest community outreach program incorporating new technology. Ambassador Jaliya Wickramasuriya connected with Sri Lankan American community leaders across the United States in the Embassy’s first ever live Web Conference on July 29, from the Sri Lanka Residence Washington DC. more..

Tata Motors launches new ACE EX2 in Sri Lanka

Aug 8 (PTI) Homegrown auto major Tata Motors today said it has launched a new variant of its mini truck Ace in Sri Lanka to strengthen its presence in the island nation. The company said it will also introduce other applications on the Ace platform, including tankers, dumper placers, cargo vans, mobile retail vans, high-lift cherry pickers, mobile hoardings, high security cash vans and taxi and school applications in the Sri Lankan market. Tata Motors is present in Sri Lanka through its more..

Bandula hands over phone numbers to CID, asks for probe

Aug 8 (Island) Minister Bandula Gunwardena said that some persons had called the Department of Examinations, claiming that there were errors in the questions papers of the on-going GCE A/L exam and he had handed the telephone numbers to the CID to trace the callers. He said that two operational room numbers and one hotline number had been publicised for the public to make any complaint if they found any errors in the question papers, but some elements had abused that facility. more..

TESO raises pitch on Tamils, fishermen issues

Aug 8 (PTI) Raising the pitch on the Lankan Tamils issue and attacks on Tamil Nadu fishermen, the DMK chief M. Karunanidhi-led Tamil Eelam Supporters Organisation on Thursday staged protests across Tamil Nadu demanding that the Centre boycott the Commonwealth meeting slated to be held in Colombo this November. Criticising the Centre for being ‘silent’, the DMK chief, whose party pulled out of the UPA in March last on more..

Nigerian arrested for fraud

Aug 8 (CG) A Nigerian man has been arrested for fraud committed in Sri Lanka, the police media unit said today. The police said that the Nigerian and his accomplices had sent out emails and SMS messages to people saying they had won money through the UN and duped them to send money to bank accounts as customs fees. The Nigerian was produced before the Wattala Magistrate and remanded till August 19 while further investigations continue. The police media unit said that more..

S’gamuwa uni undergrads condemn assault

Aug 8 (Island) Undergraduates of the Sabaragamuwa Uni staged a protest yesterday against an attack on former President of the Agriculture Faculty Students’ Union at a hostel. Spokesman of the Sabaragamuwa University Students’ Collective Tharindu Amarasinghe said that their colleague, Nissanka J. Mapa had been assaulted by an unidentified gang. The student was being treated at the Balangoda Base Hospital for head and shoulder injuries, more..

Govt says KP is free

Aug 8 (CG) The govt says former LTTE arms procurer Kumaran Pathmanathan (KP) is a free man and can move around freely. Minister Dinesh Gunawardena told parliament today that KP is not living in a state house but is moving around freely in places like Killinochchi and Medawachiya in the north. He said this in response to a question raised by UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake who accused the govt of treating KP like a king more..

Govt. could sell rice at Rs. 20, but...

Aug 8 (Island) The govt could sell a kilo of rice at 20 rupees but did not do so as it was duty bound to protect the local paddy farmers, Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena told Parliament on Tuesday. The minister, while participating in the debate on two Orders under the Special Commodity Act (Nos 1 and 2), said that the govt had to look after the interests of both producers and consumers. He said there had been a threefold increase in the country’s potato consumption during recent times and more..

ITI rejects Fonterra charges

Aug 8 (DM) Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) today categorically rejected the statement made by Fonterra Brands Lanka (Pvt) Ltd that it (ITI) has no facility to test DCD (Dicyandamide) or Melamine in milk food. Issuing a statement the ITI said, “ If ITI can be supported with so called advance techniques used in the laboratories in Thailand it will only ease the ITI’s rate of testing and the ability to test extremely low levels of DCD in milk.” The statement: Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) has more..

Sri Lanka gets first ever WIST team

Aug 8 (OW) The International Consortium on Combating Wildlife Crime (ICCWC), has deployed the first ever Wildlife Incident Support Team (WIST) in Sri Lanka to help the country fight rising incidents of poaching. The aim of the deployment is to assemble and provide the world’s best resources to a country that faces a growing tide of wildlife related crimes. Led by an Interpol unit, the WIST team will provide forensic support to more..

15-year-old Sarfaraz spins India colts to series win

Aug 8 (PTI) Fifteen year old Mumbai off-spinner Sarfaraz Khan grabbed four wickets as India U-19 comfortably beat their Sri Lankan counterparts by seven wickets to win the 'Youth ODI' series 2-0 here today. The first match of the series didn't yield any result due to inclement weather. Chasing a paltry target of 138, India colts knocked off the runs with 103 balls to spare. Almost all the batsmen made contributions with young Jammu lad Shubham Khajuria top-scoring with 34, more..

UNP questions why national anthem was not played

Aug 8 (Island) UNP MP Ajith P. Perera demanded to know from why the national anthem had not been played when the Colombo South Port was declared open. MP Perera, participating in the debate on two Orders under the Special Commodity Act, said the new terminal and breakwater had been declared open on Monday but the protocol of playing the national anthem had been overlooked. MP Perera queried whether the national anthem had not been sung owing to any Chinese influence. more..

Anchor, Maliban and Diamond milk powder off the shelves

Aug 8 (DM) The Health Ministry today notified all milk powder suppliers whose products were suspected to contain dicyandiamide (DCD) to recall these stocks of milk powder from sales outlets with immediate effect and until further notice. Following a decision taken by the Food Advisory Committee on Tuesday, Director General of Health Services Dr. Palitha Mahipala today requested Maliban, Fonterra and more..

Sri Lanka cricket coach Graham Ford tipped to take charge at Surrey

Aug 8 (Guardian) Graham Ford is favourite to be the new coach of Surrey, strengthening the county's South African links. Ford, a former South Africa national coach who is an old and close confidant of Kevin Pietersen, is currently in charge of Sri Lanka, but is thought to have emerged as first choice for the vacancy at The Oval left when Chris Adams was sacked as team director in June. South Africa's Test captain Graeme Smith is due to return to the club next year after having his first season more..

Nalin Bandara takes oaths as new UNP MP of Kurunegala

Aug 8 (LB) Nalin Priyantha Bandara took oaths before the Deputy Speaker of Parliament as MP for the Kurunegala District filling the vacated seat of Dayasiri Jayasekera. He secured the next highest preferential votes from the Kurunegala District for the UNP and was appointed to the parliamentary seat left vacant due to the resignation of former MP Dayasiri Jayasekara. Jayasekara resigned from his parliamentary seat after making a special speech in parliament stating that he will contest under more..

Dumped Queen Victoria gets new life before Sri Lanka summit

Aug 8 (AFP) A statue of Queen Victoria which was banished from Sri Lanka’s presidential palace amid fears it brought bad luck will now be spruced up for an upcoming Commonwealth summit. The 1897 statue of the former British monarch seated on a throne had been banished from the palace a few years ago and dumped in the backyard of Colombo’s museum. The museum now planned to shift the statue to a better location so that more..

Indo-Lanka Accord: SL’s ‘Finlandization’

Aug 9 (NS) July 29-30 marks the 26th year of Sri Lanka’s virtual ‘Finlandization’ by India. Lest some readers wonder what this term means it refers to Finland’s subservience to the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It is in other words a powerful country arrogating itself to the position of dictating policy to a smaller neighbor. The day after President J.R. Jayewardene under duress - and under cover of a full-day curfew - signed the Indo-Lanka Accord and Naval Rating Vijitha Rohana more..

Historic Kandy enters modern age

Aug 9 (NS) One fine day, while listening to the radio, we got to know, that the Kandy bus stop near the clock tower, has been changed owing to renovations. It was confusing at the beginning, to think of a location where would the buses stop. However, the very next day the entire clock tower was covered and construction work had begun. Development work has taken its stride in all corners of the country, now, Kandy the hill capital has also entered into the spree, and work is more..

Ramazan: The blessed month of the Quran

Aug 9 (SO) The Al-Quran- what a profound book it is. Allah has gifted this Book to humanity. See how it inspires us. "Read" is the very first word that commanded humanity. It is significant that the starting point of Islam begins with the word 'Read'! This indicates that striving for knowledge and understanding in the correct perspective has been the motivating factor of the Quran. Almighty Allah commanded in the Quran to read, Why? more..

A multiplicity of ministers

Aug 9 (CT) In getting ready material for the consultations I have been having with the young people concerned about constitutional reform, I finally counted up the number of Ministers we have. In fact the figure comes to less than 100, far fewer than the number of Ministers President Jayewardene had in his heyday, with far fewer MPs, on his side and taken as a whole. His record included District Ministers too, so that 2/3 of MPs were Ministers in the eighties, more..

A humanitarian war is not humane!

Aug 9 (CT) Fresh sounds rings in our ears! The sounds from Nandikidal and Mulliawaikkal. Screams of unimaginable terror and suffering. Hands held up in surrender then, on the edge of Mullaitivu. The hands held up today in Weliweriya, close to Colombo! Were the basic tenets of international humanitarian law upheld in either case? A resounding NO! a leadership that calls a war humanitarian, a govt that sends in the Army and STF to quell a legitimate protest in a cruel more..

Death of Military legends at Araly Point blast

Aug 9 (CT) Today, 8 August, we mark the 21st death anniversary of the legendary soldier, Gen. Denzil Kobbekaduwa. That day in 1992, can be marked as one of the saddest days in our country's history, purely because we lost some of our most committed, dedicated, brilliant military officers – Gen. Kobbekaduwa, Maj. Gen. Wijaya Wimalaratne, Admiral Mohan Jayamaha, Col. Palipana, Steven, among others at Araly Point, Kayts, more..

A fresh bill of rights: Forever a farce?

Aug 9 (GV) In 2009 , the then Ministry of Disaster Management and Human Rights (hence disbanded) ‘sought to remedy’ the many deficiencies that exist in the current fundamental rights chapter of the 1978 constitution. The Ministry appointed a committee chaired by Presidents Counsel Dr. Jayampathy Wickramaratne, tasked with the preparation of a fresh Bill of Rights to replace the present chapter on fundamental rights. The proposed draft, which mooted a significant expansion in the current more..

Need an enemy? Target Muslims

Aug 9 (Island) For months Srilanka has witnessed orchestrated anti-Muslim campaigns. Some Buddhist-clergy, self proclaimed saviours of true Buddhism, branding as Bodu Bala Sena, Sinhala Ravaya and Ravana Balakaya are instigating Buddhists, particularly the youth, into a state of frenzy that manifests in hate rhetoric against the Muslims, desecrating their belief systems and places for congregational worship. Stereotyping and targeting with the intent of causing more..

225+ වරප්රසාදනඩත්තුව

Banning contaminated milk: More remains to be done

Aug 9 (Island) Milk products found to be contaminated with dicyandiamide (DCD) are being removed from the market and milk food advertising has been suspended. The Court of Appeal has restrained Fonterra from advertising its products as one hundred per cent safe. The Health Ministry has asked the media not to carry material that promotes contaminated products. These measures are to be highly commended. Interestingly, until a few days ago, the Health Ministry spokesman more..

Some thoughts on the COPE report

Aug 9 (FT) The irony of a foresworn enemy of the capitalist State, in the unlikely form of our genteel Minister D.E.W. Gunasekera, highlighting appalling defects of State-run institutions in his COPE report would be lost on the present day generations who have little time or inclination for ideologies and the various isms of yesteryear. Going by his sedate appearance, it is hard to imagine that as a young man D.E.W. committed himself wholeheartedly to the Communist Party, thus to the more..

A day in the life of Ranaviru Real Star

Aug 9 (CT) It is the age of reality TV. Having a mass following in Sri Lanka, it was three years ago that the first programme for the military, ‘Ranaviru Real Star’ was launched. The current season, Season Three, was concluded last night at the Sugathadasa Stadium. The top five forces personnel the competition was whittled down to in the public’s SMS voting took part in its grand finale. Having first auditioned for Season Three more..

Dharmasena’s slip leads to a repeat of a joke that is wearing thin

Aug 9 (Island) Kumar Dharmasena is sitting at home watching the Zapruder video of Kennedy’s assassination. "Interesting," he thinks, and rewinds. After a few more plays he rings the Pentagon. "That bullet," he says, "I think it missed." A man is in court for stealing a watch. The prosecution offers no CCTV evidence or witnesses and the watch is never found. Judge Dharmasena deliberates and comes to a guilty verdict. "I just thought he nicked it," he explains. more..

Weliweriya: Attempting a ‘Sri Lankan Spring’ through a civil coup d’etat

Aug 9 (EAR) The tragedy that befell Weliweriya has been an early Christmas for those who have been splitting hairs wondering how to serve their sponsors to showcase a state of chaos in Sri Lanka. The usual coterie of anti-Sri Lankan destabilizing operators some of whom are columnists were quick to action writing aggrieved accounts about the incident claiming they could not sleep thinking about the 3 deaths. We wonder how they slept through 3 decades of terror with people blown to pieces more..

Engaged in a 'Jackfruit Mission' among the youth in Sri Lanka

Aug 9 (ENS) There’s an old saying in Sri Lanka - that Sri Lankans will never starve. What encourages the average islander to brag thus is a fruit both Lankans and Indians love; the ubiquitous jackfruit. But in a changing world, the popularity of ‘Kose’ - as the fruit is called in Sinhalese - is taking a beating in the small island nation. That’s where Mahinda Karunaratne comes in. For the past one year, the 80-year-old has been on a mission more..

Informatics Group celebrates 30 years with Wincor Nixdorf

Aug 9 (Island) Informatics (Private) Limited, the sole representative in Sri Lanka for Wincor Nixdorf of Germany, which is a leader in retail and retail banking technology marked another milestone this year by celebrating 30 years of partnership. The event titled the "Trends and Innovations in the Banking Industry" was held at the Eight Degrees North, Cinnamon Lakeside with representatives of some of Sri Lanka’s top banks and financial institutions being present. more..

Other two-state solution: After 56 years, SL

Aug 9 (HP) On Sept 21, the people of Sri Lanka's Northern Province will be allowed to vote in their first democratic election in 36 years. This follows an end to the country's 26-year long civil war, which saw the deaths of between 70,000 and 100,000 people. The last election held in the Northern Province was in 1977. Almost five years to the date afterwards, Sri Lanka's Civil War began. It pitted the Tamils, an ethnic group who lived mostly in the Northern and Eastern Provinces of the island, more..

Ananda Sarath Kumara granted bail

Aug 9 (CT) The former WPC member, Ananda Sarath Kumara, who was indicted on charges of forcing a Nawagaththegama teacher to kneel before him, and berating her, was granted bail by the Anamaduwa Magistrate yesterday. The accused was released on a personal bail of Rs 500,000 by the Anamaduwa Magistrate, Ranga Dissanayake. He was ordered to appear at the Puttalam High Court on 28 Aug, and more..

Indian Saree Festival 2013 to be held in October

Aug 9 (FT) Introduction Trade Shows and Colombo Media Group, the organisers of the Indian Saree Festival 2013, held the first press conference in Colombo. Jivesh Sachdev, Managing Director of Introduction Trade Shows, firstly summarised the opening day of the Indian Saree Festival 2013. This event will be held at BMICH for four days from 3 to 6 Oct 2013. The Indian Saree Festival 2013 is the largest and most exclusive exhibition showcasing Indian sarees from all over India. more..

Reasons for more deserters from armed forces listed in Parliament

Aug 9 (FT) The Ministry of Defence admitted in Parliament that a dislike for engaging in activities outside the parameters of their service and financial and other difficulties were resulting in servicemen deserting their posts in the Air Force and Navy. The admission was made in response to a question for oral answers raised by Opposition legislator Ravi Karunanayake. “It is observed that servicemen of the Air Force absconded or went abroad due to financial difficulties, illness, more..

Court won't be swayed by police reports

Aug 9 (CT) Gampaha Chief Magistrate, Tikiri Jayatileke, said the Court will not be swayed in any way by the reports forwarded by the police with regard to the Weliweriya clash and added anybody can come forward to give evidence in Court during the Magisterial proceedings. He said the Court has the power to summon witnesses according to the needs of the Courts, and not according to police requirements. more..

Bail approved for Digambaram

Aug 9 (CT) Mt. Lavinia Magistrate, Ranga Wimalasena, released three persons, including Nuwara Eliya District UPFA MP, Palani Digambaram, on personal bail of Rs 100,000 each. The three were charged with attempting to acquire a property by force from a lawful owner. The other two suspects were Sunderam Vasudevan of School Lane, Colombo 14 and Mailvaganam Udayakumar of Bambalapitiya. The accused had been notified to appear in Court on the charge of forceful more..

Two killed on Expressway

Aug 9 (Island) Two members of a family were killed and three others injured when their car carshed into the protective railing on the Southern Expressway, at 51.3 km mile post, yesterday afternoon. Police spokesman SP Buddhika Siriwardana told The Island that Dulip Chandana Samarasinghe Gunasekara (36) and his sister Nadeeka (32) were pronounced dead on admission to the Nagoda hospital. The others, who sustained injuries, were being treated in the ICU of that hospital. more..

Diaspora Tamils to tap goodwill of India

Aug 9 (TOI) Breaking free from the thinking of pro-Eelam outfits in Tamil Nadu, leaders of the Tamil diaspora have taken an independent line to build bridges with the Indian govt rather than confronting the Manmohan Singh regime over its stand on issues concerning Sri Lankan Tamils. A few Lankan Tamil organisations in the US and the UK have been lobbying for a better relationship with the Indian govt. "India's intervention is more..