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COPING with COPE : a message of hope

Aug 2 (DBS) Quintessential banker (former) and silent activist, I have observed from afar Eran Wickramaratne for his silent pursuit of a brand of politics that is appealing to the intellectual and petit bourgeois and inspirational to the working class. The few debates we have been privy to on mass media are succinct, to the point and devoid of clouding of issues. He appears to have a vision and a touch of professionalism rarely more..

Politicos’ aversion to STF

Aug 2 (Island) People of Deraniyagala who have, at long last, plucked up the courage to rise against the criminal gangs led by some UPFA politicians following the brutal killing of a popular estate superintendent, are demanding that the Special Task Force (STF) be deployed in their area for their protection. They say they have lost their faith in the regular police. It may be wrong to tar all police personnel with the same brush as there are honest, efficient officers and men among them, but more..

SL U-19 v India U-19: Fernando, Tyronne salvage draw for Sri Lanka

Aug 2 (CI) Binura Fernando and AK Tyronne scored a century each in the second innings to help Sri Lanka salvage a draw against India in the second youth Test at the Welagedara Stadium in Kurunegala. The pair added 188 for the eighth wicket to seize the initiative, leaving India to chase an improbable 319. Sri Lanka, electing to bat, struggled to get partnerships going in the first innings. Left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav finished with figures of 6-38 and spearheaded a fine more..

SriLankan to promote sports tourism with Carlton Super 7's 2013

Aug 2 (GDI) SriLankan Airlines is the official airline of this year’s Carlton Super 7’s 2013. When the last and the most intense episode of the game is ready to unfold in Colombo on August 2nd and 3rd after its sensational kick-off, Chairman, SriLankan Airlines, Nishantha Wickremasinghe spoke of the Airline’s aspirations to take Sri Lanka to the world through endorsing sports event with international participation. more..

Sanga critical of Test series cancellation

Aug 2 (Island) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) officials came under further criticism after Kumar Sangakkara aired his displeasure at the cancellation of the high profile Test series against South Africa that was to follow the on-going one-day format. The country’s cricket administrations, since 2009 have been often accused of nepotism, conflict of interests, inefficiency and corruption and the board, led by Upali Dharmadasa and Nishantha Ranatunga last year cancelled the Test series against more..

Heavy metals, gods, CKDu and govt. policy

Aug 2 (Island) Many articles have been written on possible causes of Chronic Kidney Disease of unknown aetiology (CKDu). Many factors have been suggested as the cause of CKDu. However, the results are based on single factors and univariate analysis. Some research articles are also not based on good scientific principles. Some appear to be guesswork. In one case arsenic has been implicated, and the origin of the suspicion attributed to a God. With respect to the role of more..

GIZ and WFP partner to assist school children in northern Sri Lanka

Aug 2 (WFP) Nearly 170 schools in Jaffna, Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu in Northern Sri Lanka have received new kitchen utensils, bowls and spoons from the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) to supplement the school meals programmes implemented by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). The grant of Rupees 2.4 million is part of GIZ’s efforts to help reintegrate internally displaced people in the Vanni Region, more..

South Africa hope change of format brings change of form

Aug 2 (CI) Before South Africa can even allow the lessons of a deflating ODI series loss to sink in, twelve of their one-day squad must now gather themselves for battle in a different format. The teams will play three matches over the next five days, beginning with a game at the R Premadasa Stadium, which has not only been the scene of two mammoth South Africa defeats in the past two weeks, but also a venue that only brought them sorrow in the World Twenty20 last year. more..

Sri Lanka drains liquidity from debt repayment

Aug 2 (LBO) Sri Lanka's central bank has bought Treasury Bills to meet govt cash flow needs but is draining the liquidity though open market operations to counter any inflationary impact, Governor Nivard Cabraal said. "We have built up the space by retiring Treasury Bills over the past several months to meet situations of this nature," he said. "It won't have inflationary implications because we are replacing one debt with another," "We will be draining the liquidity." more..

5,000 computers for 1,000 schools not delivered

Aug 2 (CT) A computer business solution system which had entered into a Rs 572 million-agreement with the Ministry of Education, to provide computer equipment to 1,000 schools, had suddenly put up shutters, leading to a loss of over Rs 500 million to the education sector, the Ceylon Teachers' Union (CTU) claimed. General Secretary of the CTU charged that officials of the Education Ministry had been extremely irresponsible more..

Failed State Index fails Sri Lanka

Aug 2 (EAR) Sri Lanka has slipped down to the 28th position in the 9th Failed States Index (FSI) after being identified as the 29th state in the 2012 Index. This year’s drop owes to Sri Lanka’s poor performance in seven of the categories: Group Grievance, rise of Poverty and Economic Decline, Delegitimization of the state, Human Rights and Rule of Law, Fractionalized Elite and External Intervention. Currently, Sri Lanka is in poor company, along with eighteen other countries more..

A Tamil path to Palestine

Aug 2 (Rabble) At the close of 2008, I joined thousands in Toronto to protest Israel's attack on Gaza, and even spoke at some of the rallies. Like people all over the world, we called for an immediate end to the war. At York University, where I was a student, we mobilized the campus to stop the bombing and to defend Palestinian rights. Only a few months after the siege, the bombs dropped again, but this time, they were falling on my own people -- in the Vanni region of northern SL. more..

Video: Weliweriya tense after man dies

Aug 2 (CG) Weliweriya was still tense late tonight with soldiers patrolling the area after violence broke out this evening leaving one person dead and at leas 23 injured. According to reports from the area, people were forced to stay indoors and there were also reports of electricity being disrupted in some parts of the village. When contacted an army official admitted the situation was “tensed” after the violence. more..

Chandraleka wants CBK questioned

Aug 2 (Island) Following the sentencing by the Panadura High Court of ten former Presidential Security Division officers of President Chandrika Kumaratrunga yesterday for harassing the popular singing couple Rukantha Perera and Chandraleka Perera, Chandraleka said she felt elated as finally justice had been done. Chandraleka told The Island that the police should question former President Kumaratunga on the matter and file her statement in court for the record. more..

Union boss urges appointment of efficient management to National Blood Centre

Aug 2 (Island) The Sri Lanka Society for Medical Laboratory Science (SLSMLS) warned that the National Blood Centre (NBC) would lose its ISO certification if the Health Ministry did not take urgent steps to appoint a management capable of developing the institution. President of the SLSMLS, Ravi Kumudesh, said that the NBC was in need of a management which was more in tune with modern skills in further developing the services of the Blood Centre. The NBC had been awarded the more..

S&P’s affirms Lanka ‘B+/B’ ratings; Outlook Stable

Aug 2 (FT) Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services said that it has affirmed its ‘B+’ long-term and ‘B’ short-term sovereign credit ratings on Sri Lanka. The outlook on the long-term rating is stable. The transfer and convertibility assessment remains ‘B+’. S&P’s also affirmed ‘B+’ issue rating on Sri Lanka’s outstanding notes. “We affirmed the ratings to reflect our view that Sri Lanka has weak external liquidity, moderately high and more..

Ambassador Raja Edirisuriya, Presents Credentials to the President of Peru

Aug 2 (AT) Raja Edirisuriya non-resident Ambassador for Sri Lanka to Peru presented his letters of credence to His Excellency Mr. Ollanta Moises Humala Tasso on 12th July 2013 together with other seven Ambassadors. After the presentation of the credentials, President Humala met with all the Ambassadors and briefed the economy and development achieved by Peru and its interest in strengthening a strong social and business relationship with other countries. more..

Anuradha Herath appointed as CHOGM Media Spokesperson

Aug 2 (GDI) Sri Lanka President's International Media Director Ms. Anuradha K. Herath has been appointed as the CHOGM 2013 Media Spokesperson. Anuradha K. Herath is currently Director (International Media) at the Sri Lanka President’s Office and was formerly the director of the Sri Lanka College of Journalism (SLCJ). She has more than 13 years of collective experience in print, broadcast and online media in Sri Lanka and the United States. more..

'Centre making no effort to get fishermen released'

Aug 2 (Hindu) Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Thursday blamed the Centre for not taking any concerted effort to secure the release of Tamil Nadu fishermen lodged in Sri Lankan jails. In a letter to PM Manmohan Singh, details of which were released to the media, she rued that despite her writing repeatedly highlighting incidents of attacks on the fishermen and their arrests “there appears to be no concerted effort by the Central govt.” more..

Indian fishermen start indefinite strike protesting attack by SL navy

Aug 2 (PTI) Over 5000 fishermen from various hamlets in the district today commenced on an indefinite strike protesting the arrest of their fellow fishermen belonging to Akkaraipettai off Kodiakarai coast by the Sri Lankan Navy. "The fishermen will not put out to sea until a concrete solution is found to the problem of indiscriminate attack and arrests by the Lankan Navy by the Central and state governments", Akkaraipettai fishermen association leader Manoharan said. more..

Behave or get out, President tells UPFA local authorities

Aug 2 (Island) President Rajapaksa on Wednesday urged heads of UPFA-run local govt authorities to behave or face the consequences. Those found guilty of offences would be expelled from the party and action taken to fill vacancies with suitable party members, the President said. An irate President Rajapaksa said that he knew what was going on in the provinces. The President was addressing the members at the Presidential Secretariat in the wake of several SLFP members being hauled up more..

Newly appointed Deraniyagala OIC transferred

Aug 2 (DM) Prabath Deshabandu, the newly appointed OIC of Deraniyagala has received sudden transfer orders instructing him to vacate his post with immediate effect. He has been transferred to the Padiyathalawa Police Station. The former STF officer assumed duties nineteen days ago. He had conducted raids against the alleged criminals during this period and attempted to bring the perpetrators to the book, villagers said. more..

Investment zone in Suriyawewa

Aug 2 (DN) Suriyawewa Investment promotion zone, Hambantota will attract over US$ 400 million worth of investment projects in the years ahead, BOI of Sri Lanka Executive Director Sunil Silva said. The investment zone will be built to supplement with the Hambantota Port and Mahinda Rajapaksa International Airport development projects. The project which comes under 430 hectares of land will consist of tourist hotels,sports complex, information technology park, apartments, more..

Ministry Secy directed to probe

Aug 2 (Island) Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena has instructed Ministry Secretary Gotabhaya Jayaratne to start a disciplinary inquiry against the female teacher who climbed on to the roof of the Royal College to protest against her transfer on Tuesday. Gunawardena said that the ministry’s investigation division would handle the inquiry according to the Establishment Code. By protesting against a legal transfer, the teacher had violated the norms of the public service, more..

Ban imported milk powder, GMOA tells govt

Aug 2 (Island) GMOA Assistant Secretary Dr. Nalin Ariyarathne said that the Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) of Sri Lanka, which tested samples of imported milk powder, had detected Dicyanamide (DCD) in all of them, but the Health authorities had not taken any action to ban those products. GMOA Media Secretary Dr. Navin de Soysa said that his organisation would ask Health Minister Sirisena to ban imported milk powder more..

Moves to remove Garrison Cemetery

Aug 2 (CT) The Ministry of Culture and the Arts is in discussion with concerned parties to remove the Garrison Cemetery, which belongs to the Dalada Maligawa, in which 154 British nationals have been buried. The British nationals had died of smallpox in 1815. The cemetery is located at a level higher than that of the Dalada Maligawa in which the sacred tooth relic is kept, and as such, it is considered an insult to the sacred relic, the Minister of Culture and the Arts, T.B. Ekanayake, said. more..

Vasu peeved his nominee rejected by UPFA

Aug 2 (CT) A representative from the DLF, led by Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara, was removed from the list of candidates of the UPFA, for the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) election. Internal sources said Minister was agitated about the decision to remove the names of DLF members from the list of candidates. Reportedy, Nanayakkara has requested the UPFA to give an opportunity to DLF members to contest at the upcoming PC elections under the UPFA banner. more..

Govt. acquires Kadir’s Jaffna lands

Aug 2 (FT) The controversial northern land rights issue took a high profile turn yesterday after it was revealed in court that the ancestral property belonging to former Foreign Minister and vehement LTTE critic Lakshman Kadirgamar in the Jaffna peninsula had been acquired by the Govt. The land situated in a picturesque spot in Keerimalai contains an elevated cliff with an ocean frontage and was exclusively allotted to Kadirgamar, more..

The shame, the sham and the scandal of Deraniyagala

Aug 2 (DM) The vision of professional, independent journalism is to be the voice of the voiceless, weak and defenceless people. The Daily Mirror is happy that it has been able to fully play this role during the past two weeks regarding the horror and the terror that the people of Deraniyagala have been under going for the past 15 years. According to editorials, news items and full - page feature articles published in the Daily Mirror, the reign of terror reached its worst proportions when Anil Champika more..

Kumarathunga Munidasa

Aug 2 (DM) During a time when rice, clothes, vehicles were all being imported to Sri Lanka, Kumarathunga Munidasa, a Sri Lankan writer fought endlessly to free the people of this nation from the western influences. He wrote in the editorial of the Lakmini Pahana newspaper: "Dangerous are the times for Sri Lanka. If the importing of rice stopped, we would have nothing to eat. If importing of materials stopped, we would have nothing to wear. If it was not for the vehicles imported more..

Noori under ‘reign of terror’ A deaf and blind Police force

Aug 2 (DM) The Daily Mirror reveals that the IGP, the Presidential Secretariat, the PM’s office and the Ministry of Defence, Public Security, law and order were informed of the alleged crimes committed by the gang led by Champika as far back as June 2008. Villagers state that if relevant authorities had taken action after the information was provided in this instance, Champika would not have been able to commit the crimes more..

The pioneering expats who put Ceylon tea on the map

Aug 2 (Telegraph) At a time when the coffee industry appeared to be making its mark in British colonial Ceylon – today’s Sri Lanka – James Taylor, a 17-year-old Scotsman, arrived in the country to work for a prominent coffee grower. It was 1852, and conditions were harsh. Aside from variable weather conditions, tough manual labour was required and soon Taylor found himself in charge of the Loolecondera Estate more..

The time for change is approaching

Aug 2 (SL) The hope of change in the type of politics that might be practiced in the country was short lived. The TNA’s nomination of former Supreme Court Justice C. V. Wigneswaran to be its chief ministerial candidate for the Northern Provincial Council upgraded the quality of those contesting the provincial elections. As a person who had earned his reputation as a professional and a judge, his nomination was also seen as more..

Pakistan to host Sri Lanka in UAE

Aug 2 (CI) Pakistan will host Sri Lanka in the UAE between Dec 2013 and Jan 2014 for a bilateral series that includes three Tests, five ODIs and two Twenty20s. The series, the second bilateral contest between Pakistan and Sri Lanka in the UAE, will be played in Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. The T20s and ODIs have been scheduled before the Tests. The T20s will be played on Dec 11 and 13 in Dubai, while Sharjah will host the first ODI more..

Magistrate orders tests to determine cause of pollution

Aug 2 (Island) Gampaha Additional Magistrate Heshantha de Mel yesterday ordered the police to obtain urgent separate test reports from the Govt Analyst, the Central Environmental Authority, Gampaha Medical Officer of Health, and Water Resources Board to ascertain the reason for the pollution of ground water in the Rathupaswela area of Weliveriya. The Additional Magistrate made the order when he took up a case filed by more..

COPE, PAC reveal a wretched state of affairs and total decline

Aug 2 (ST) The salary bill of some Rs. six billion for Mihin Board of Directors rose to Rs. 11 million, the COPE revealed this week in its report. The two Parliamentary oversight committees, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) and COPE presented their reports to Parliament this week. COPE examined the accounts of 244 State-run institutions, while the PAC examined the accounts of 69 Govt institutions. more..

SC instructs State agents to comply with Accessibility Order

Aug 2 (CT) The Supreme Court last Monday instructed 'agencies of the State' to comply with the Court order issued earlier and implement comprehensive directions to ensure those with 'restricted ability' are given every opportunity to integrate freely with the community. The Supreme Court Registrar has been directed to communicate this order. The Court has further requested the AG to ensure this task comes into full effect more..

Sri Lankan apparel exporters now join ASYCUDA network

Aug 2 (F2F) Sri Lanka’s non-BoI (Board of Investment) apparel exporters have now been integrated to the global network called ‘The Automated System for Customs Data Worldwide’ (ASYCUDA) World of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The country’s apparel sector has now entered a new phase and joined 84 other countries on the UNCTAD’s global electronic network. more..

Gota says villagers provoked

Aug 2 (CG) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has said that the Weliweriya drinking water dispute was settled satisfactorily. However he said that in the meantime certain vested elements provoked the villagers into needless confrontations. Rajapaksa said that the protesting public were satisfied with the solution offered to close a factory, which allegedly caused the contamination of water in the area, but more..

President invites the Pope

Aug 2 (CG) President Rajapaksa has written to His Holiness Pope Francis I extending an invitation to visit Sri Lanka. “On behalf of the Govt and the people of Sri Lanka, I consider it a great privilege and an honour to extend to Your Holiness an invitation to undertake a visit to this beautiful country, which only recently emerged from three decades of conflict,” President wrote. “A visit by Your Holiness to Sri Lanka would be a more..