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Liyanage removed from BBC Sinhala Sandeshaya

Dec 27 (CT) Head of the BBC Sinhala Service, Priyath Liyanage has been removed form the Sinahala Service. Dejan Radojevic from the South Asia Hub will be leading the Sinhala Service, a BBC spokesperson, Paul Rasmussen told Colombo Telegraph. The BBC probe into all aspects of its Sinhala Service’s activities is still proceeding, Colombo Telegraph learns. The BBC Sinhala Service journalists are being asked by the BBC to participate in the ongoing investigation more..

Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.4%

Dec 27 (LBO) Stocks end 0.48% higher Friday with a tea export firm dominating trade. All Share Price Index closed 28.17 points higher at 5,876.66, up 0.48%. The S&P SL20 closed 17.51 points higher at 3,240.63, up 0.54%. Turnover was 1.33 billion rupees, up from 114.93 million rupees a day earlier, with stocks of 51 firms closing in the red against 121 gainers. Ceylon Tea Services, a company connected to Sri Lanka's Dilmah tea brand, closed 9.60 rupees higher at 680.00 rupees with more..

Demands to free Indian scribe grow

Dec 27 (PTI) Political parties in Tamil Nadu and journalist associations on Friday sought Centre’s intervention for release of an Indian national arrested in Sri Lanka. MDMK leader Vaiko appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to ensure the safe return of the man hailing from Tamil Nadu, arrested on Thursday. In a letter to Dr. Singh, Mr. Vaiko identified the arrested person as Tamil Prabhakaran and said he had gone there more..

Kazakhstan provides humanitarian aid to SL

Dec 27 (TN) Kazakhstan has provided humanitarian aid to Sri Lanka. Kazakhstan Prime Minister Serik Akhemtov instructed the Ministry of Finance to allocate $200 thousand to help Sri Lanka, Tengrinews reports citing Adilet website. Under the Prime Minister’s order signed on December 20, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has to transfer the financial aid to the designated bank account and the Ministry of Finance has to control the use of the aid. Kazakhstan is considered one of the more..

Crimes OIC arrested over sexual bribe

Dec 27 (Island) Bribery sleuths arrested the officer in charge of the Maho police crimes division for soliciting a sexual bribe yesterday morning. The 37-year-old Inspector was arrested in a room of a hotel in Kurunegala when he went with the complainant there, police media unit told The Island. He is alleged to have sought the sexual favour to help her in an inquiry that was being conducted. The 29-year-old complainant was married a third time and was living with her third husband. more..

Tamil Nadu fishermen to meet Manmohan Singh

Dec 27 (IANS) A delegation of TN fishermen is expected to meet PM Manmohan Singh Friday to demand an end to the attacks on them by the Sri Lanka Navy, a DMK MP said. "They will urge the prime minister to take necessary action so that the 227 Tamil Nadu fishermen jailed in Sri Lanka and the 77 boats seized there are released," T.R. Baalu told IANS. "These people have been jailed for nearly three months in Sri Lanka," more..

CMC to raise US $50 mn through municipal bonds

Dec 27 (Island) A budgetary allocation of Rs. 1,530.4 million has been made by the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) for next year for the purposes of solid waste collection, transportation and for the maintenance of the dumping sites of solid waste. Colombo Mayor A.J.M. Muzammil said that the solid waste generated in Colombo alone was 700 metric tonnes per day and a programme would be activated to solve the problems of the 122 families whose houses had been badly more..

Commemoration ceremony at Pereliya Tsunami Memorial

Dec 27 (GDI) A special tsunami commemoration ceremony at the tsunami memorial in Pereliya was held under the patronage of the Maha Sangha led by Southern Province Chief Sangha Nayake Pallaththara Sumanajothi thera. The ceremony commenced with floral tributes being placed at the Tsunami Memorial by all present, on Thursday (26). Chief incumbent of Telwatta Raja Maha Viharaya Ven. Pituwala Sumana thera administered Pansil. Catholic religious rites were performed by more..

Japan PM's visit to war shine condemned in Sri Lanka

Dec 27 (Xinhua) Japanese PM Shinzo Abe's controversial visit to the Yasukuni Shrine and the adverse impact this visit will have on China-Japan relations was described as "deplorable" by officials in Sri Lanka on Friday. Secretary General of Sri Lanka-China Friendship Association Sumathi Dharmawardana said that Abe's visit on Dec. 26 deserved the severest condemnation. "The Japanese Army's conduct during the more..

Gota furious at Vasu’s recommendations

Dec 27 (LT) Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara has forwarded recommendations to stop harassment of tenants when authority is given to the Ministry of Urban Development to take over their lands. The recommendations point out the officers in Army uniforms should not be deployed by the secretary of the Ministry of Urban Development Gotabhaya Rajapaksa to give oral directions to tenants when their lands are to be taken over or the affairs should not be conducted like a more..

More X’mas casualties this year

Dec 27 (Island) The National Hospital (NHSL) revealed that there was a marginal increase in the number of casualties recorded on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Director of the NHSL, Dr. Anil Jasinghe said that 546 cases that included road accidents, home accidents, falls, acts of violence and fire cracker injuries. The number last year had been 512. There had been 114 road accidents, 110 home accidents, 64 violent incidents, and two fire cracker incidents. more..

2013 in review: An administrative farce

Dec 27 (CI) If Sri Lanka's 2013 had remained as the Future Tours Programme had intended, fans would now be reflecting on a satisfying year of cricket, replete with full tours to the West Indies and Zimbabwe, and a home Test series against the No. 1 team. Instead it has been 12 months of bland, already forgotten ODIs and regret over missed opportunities. Fittingly, off the field, 2013 was the year in which administrators, more..

Fruits sprayed with “Ethephon” confiscated

Dec 27 (CT) Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) officials today confiscated 75000kg of fruit from vendors at the Manning Market while they were spraying the chemical “Ethephon” onto their fruits to ripen them. The fruits were valued at over Rs 100 lakhs. However, the Ethephon packet specifically states that the chemical should not be used on fruits, officials found bottles of Ethephon spray next to the fruits when they raided the stalls of the fruit vendors. If the chemical Ethephon is to be used, more..

LPBOA wants WPRPTA Chairman removed

Dec 27 (CT) Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) today threatened to strike, unless Chairman of the Western Province Road and Passenger Transport Authority (WPRPTA), Amila Ranmandala, is removed from his post. LPBOA President, Gemunu Wijeratne, strongly accused the WPRPTA Chairman of issuing illegal route permits and urged the Western Province Council (WPC) to remove Ranmandala from his post. Wijeratne said Ranmandala is issuing illegal route more..

Shiral- Maithri request nomination from UNP

Dec 27 (SM) Expelled UNP WPC member Maithri Gunaratne has requested the UNP leadership council to unconditionally reinstate the party membership of the expelled group including himself and Western provincial councilor Shiral Lakthilaka, reports say. The councilor has made the particular request based on the necessity to contest for the upcoming Western and Southern PC elections under UNP ticket. more..

'CMC files burnt to eliminate evidence of corruption and irregularities'

Dec 27 (Island) Files belonging to the Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) were secretly burnt in the Kanatte crematorium on 17 August 2013, at the instance of certain top officials in the CMC, to ensure the elimination of evidence of malpractices, corruption and irregularities, including in the recruitment of security guards to the CMC in March 2012, the Petitioner in a Writ Application filed in the Court of Appeal has alleged. Though fully qualified he was not recruited while more..

Nimal Siripala is powerless, can't even get a detained dog released says his wife

Dec 27 (LT) Despite thinking her husband could do certain things as he is a minister, he has no power even to get a dog detained by the govt released says the President of SL Animal Protection Association (SLAPA) Ms. Iranganie de Silva, wife of Minister and a senior in SLFP, Nimal Siripala de Silva. Speaking at a media conference Ms. Iranganie de Silva has said, “The dogs that were caught in Colombo before the CHOGM have been taken to Chilaw area and killed. more..

Modernized Racecourse Grandstand opens for public

Dec 27 (MoD) The renovated Colombo Racecourse grandstand was declared open by the Speaker of the Parliament Chamal Rajapaksa yesterday evening at a ceremony held at the Racecourse Ground. Secretary Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Chairperson of MOD Seva Vanitha Unit Mrs. Ioma Rajapaksa also attended the opening ceremony. Secretary Defence and the distinguished more..

Budget of Valvettithurai passed amid controversy

Dec 27 (AD) The budget of the Valvettithurai Urban Council was passed amid controversy and protests this morning (27). Four members had voted in favour of the budget while only four members were present when the vote was taken. The budget was presented to the Council this morning by its Chairman during which only four councillors were present. The five members who were not present at the vote were obstructed from entering the Council chambers by a group of protesters. more..

Dinesh's son to WPC polls

Dec 27 (SM) Yadamini Gunawardena - son of MEP leader Dinesh Gunewardena is to enter the fray from the Colombo Disctrict at the Western Provincial Council polls under the UPFA ticket, party internal sources say. He is currently the leader of the MEP Youth front. However, the naming of Yadamini has created a divergence, as party activists are requesting to name either Minister Geethanjana Gunawardena or Chairman of the Sri Lanka Ayurvedic Drugs Corporation more..

President undertakes visit to Israel, Palestine

Dec 27 (Island) President Rajapaksa accompanied by a top delegation, would shortly visit Israel and Palestine, a Presidential Secretariat official said. He said the four day tour in January would involve a number of discussions with a special focus on strengthening economic ties with the two countries. President would spend two days in Israel and the other two days in Palestine. Top agenda for President would be his more..

The scientist who won four gold medals

Dec 28 (NS) In November 2013, a collection of articles by well- known writer Mathugama Seneviruwan was published as “Vasa visata erehi paarisarika nava nipayum”. ‘The Nation’ will be carrying translations of the articles starting today. The inventors’ exhibition held in October 2012 in Colombo was a landmark event of its kind in Sri Lanka, basically due to the response by inventors including many schoolchildren. Organized by the Sri Lanka Investors Commission (SLIC), more..


Dec 28 (NS) Swarnavahini channel in its morning program, titled – Lokasithiyama (27 /10/2013) showed an unusual spectacle. It highlighted a mission of an Indian gentleman, who has devoted his life to look after the poor in his vicinity, by preparing, food by his own hands and feeding them himself. One can say there is nothing very unusual in his endeavor, other than the fact that the preparation and feeding is done solely by a single person. more..

For life and its living

Dec 28 (SL) Vivacious, vividly striking, chic and stylish are just some of the words that describe Sri Lanka’s young, top entrepreneur Otara Gunewardene Chandiram whose business ODEL is considered a forerunner in retail excellence in Sri Lanka, and indeed the region, that has grown into something of a legend with its own brand identity of “Mind, Body and Soul”. Deriving its name from the initial O and her second name more..

Petition against CJ, what will Mahinda do?

Dec 28 (CT) After President Mahinda Rajapaksa became the Chairman of the Commonwealth, at the conclusion of the CHOGM in November, the very first petition submitted to it for consideration was one against CJ Mohan Peries as revealed in the media recently. The petition was in respect of purported legal opinion sought by President Rajapaksa from the CJ about the possibility of holding the Presidential Election this year as per the relevant provisions in the Constitution. more..

Sound, fury and ‘no action’?

Dec 28 (SL) At the end of his 23rd visit recently, Japan’s Special Envoy, Yashushi Akashi, said that not only the international community but also Sri Lankans were “waiting for action, not just sound and fury”. The observations came after meetings with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and other sections of the nation’s polity and civil society, starting with the ruling TNA in the Northern Province. Akashi knows Sri Lanka better than any overseas diplomatic observer. more..

Should a Muslim eat wedding cake?

Dec 28 (GV) A few days ago, at the wedding of two Sri Lankan Muslims, both of whose families hail from Mannar, families forcibly evicted from their homes by the LTTE in 1990, a married Sri Lankan Muslim woman, a doctor by profession, cut a slice from the wedding cake after the bride and groom had formally done so. As she was about to eat the piece, her husband snatched it from her hand and threw it away. more..

Karunanidhi flays TN govt for delay in Sri Lanka talks

Dec 28 (DH) DMK president M Karunanidhi flayed the TN govt for alleged procrastination in organising talks between representatives of the state fishermen and Sri Lanka. He alleged that the state govt has not acted on the demand to announce the date for the talks for months. “I wonder when the govt will conduct the talks”, he said in a statement here. He also urged PM Manmohan Singh to take up the issue of Indian fishermen's arrests with the Sri Lankan govt and sought talks between more..

Weli Oya and the political necessity for permanent refugees

Dec 28 (CT) The Mullaitivu Citizens’ Committee visited Weli Oya (Sect.14.3) with Major Tata of the IPKF in September 1987. The officer–in-charge of the Sri Lankan Army there said that what was going on there was a high-land cultivation scheme under the Mahaveli Project. This was the first time such a claim was officially made. It was earlier said by Minister Athulathmudali to be an open prison camp. It is not clear how the Mahaveli Authority that was in charge of Mahaveli River diversion, more..

Adding value through meditation

Dec 28 (CT) A New Year meditation programme has been organized in the presence of Ajahn Sujato Thero, an Australian Buddhist monk, who is also a popular Dhamma and meditation teacher, and founder and abbot of Santi Forest monastery. Ajahn Sujato was born in Perth, Australia and raised in a liberal Catholic family. After dropping out of university, he played music, notably in the indie folk-pop band, Martha’s Vineyard. more..

Editorial: Belling the cat

Dec 28 (Island) Two provincial council (PC) elections are only weeks away. South and the West are expected to go to the polls early next year. Elections in this country are like a third rate mega teledrama with a countless number of disjointed episodes which make no sense but entertain the public. PCs may be white elephants, but elections to them are crucial, paradoxical as it may sound—unlike the Local Govt polls which have come to be dubbed Kaanu-bokku elections. more..

Why I laugh at unctuous Buddhist monks

Dec 28 (CT) I am not writing this article out of malice; if you were to read this article, you would probably understand what I am talking about, and you would laugh with me, not at any particular person; you would see my sense of humor, without hating a particular thing or person. But for some reason, if you do not have my sense of humor, it is fine with me. Only a sage would feign stupidity to give the hoi polloi a chance to have fun by ridiculing him. more..

Irish Lives: Dil Wickremasinghe

Dec 28 (IT) Born in Italy and raised in Sri Lanka, broadcaster and social justice activist Dil Wickremasinghe feels thoroughly Irish. Her story doesn’t match with the immigrant tales we have come to expect. She began life in the “lap of luxury”, she says, in an affluent neighbourhood in Rome, with a nanny and a private education. But the breakdown of her parents’ marriage changed everything. “I was shipped to Sri Lanka to more..

When human greed usurps nature’s kingdom

Dec 28 (Island) My thoughts go back forty eight years- to a little forest clad hamlet called Aluttarama, seven miles north of Mahiyangana. The road from Mahiyangana to Aluttarama was rugged and rustic for about five miles. Beyond that, it was little more than a cart track lined on either side by forest. A green mantle of forest stretched for miles around, and the mighty Mahaweli Ganga snaked its way through the forest like some giant reptile. This was truly Nature’s kingdom. more..

Misbah gives up the reverse-sweep

Dec 28 (CI) You've been denied pace from one end on a slow pitch. You see a quicker bowler at the other, and try to take some runs off him. You hit him for four over extra cover. Next ball, you cart him high over the wide long-on boundary. If you are an opener, you think that it's enough for one over, there are plenty more to come. But Ahmed Shehzad went for glory off the third ball too, against Suranga Lakmal, and his wild mis-hit only found mid-on in the sixth over. more..

Chronicle of a tsunami foretold

Dec 28 (Hindu) Could animals have warned us of the 2004 tsunami before it occurred? That was the question many reporters asked Rom in the weeks following the disaster. On that fateful morning, when giant waves hit the east coast, about 20 km away, our dogs lay asleep under the dining table, while Rom and I bustled about the kitchen. Rom replied he had seen no evidence of animals’ ability to foretell natural disasters. more..

Award to Sri Lankan writer

Dec 28 (Hindu) The Vishnupuram Award for 2013 was recently given to Sri Lankan Tamil writer Thelivaththai Joseph by Vishnupuram Literary Forum. The award has been instituted by readers of writer B. Jeyamohan in the name of his masterpiece Vishnupuram. It aims to honour unnoticed Tamil writers. Writer Indra Parthasarathi was the chief guest and director Bala, Jeyamohan, writer Suresh Kumar Indrajit and V. Suresh of the Forum felicitated the writer. more..

Mohan Munasinghe honoured in Pakistan

Dec 28 (Island) Professor Mohan Munasinghe, who shared the 2007 Nobel Prize for Peace, was honoured by the Pakistan Society of Development Economists (PSDE) and Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) at their international conference in Islamabad 19-21 December 2013. He was invited to deliver the Allama Iqbal Distinguished Guest Oration and presented with a special award for exceptional contributions to Energy and more..

Badurueliya Hospital reopen after shutdown

Dec 28 (AHRC) In the early morning of December 27, the authorities addressed a large crowd of people protesting outside Badureliya District Hospital. They had come to support a MP who was staging a hunger strike demanding the reopening of the hospital. The authorities announced to the crowd that the hospital would be reopened the next morning. The hospital was closed down after the death of a local man. more..

Isn’t the Nationalist a Mental Patient?

Dec 28 (Island) Are you a Sinhalese? If you are a Sinhalese, how do you know that? I have asked this question from many who call themselves Sinhalese. I have so far never received a satisfactory reply from any of them. I have also asked those who say that they are Tamils, Telegus, etc., as to how they know that they are Tamils, Telegus and so on. From them too, I have never received a satisfactory reply. When this question is asked, some get annoyed. Some ask back why I should ask this question more..