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Bus owners demand diesel subsidy

Feb 26 (CT) In the wake of the recent diesel price increase, the govt should provide private bus owners with a diesel subsidy, rather than a bus fare hike, Lanka Private Bus Owners' Association (LPBOA) said yesterday. LPBOA President Gemunu Wijeratne said, "Bus fares should not be calculated according to the existing National Policy, which is irregular and dysfunctional. We request a basic subsidy for buses plying more..

Sri Lanka stocks slide 1.1%, rupee held

Feb 26 (LBO) Stocks slid 1.15% Tuesday amid a broad based sell-off ahead of an UN resolution over human rights later in the week and the rupee held steady with selling by a state bank, brokers and dealers said. Colombo's benchmark All Share Index fell 66 points to 5,669.48 points and the S&P SL20 Index fell 21 points (0.65%) to 2,320,21 points. Turnover was 713 million rupees. Brokers said there was concern over a planned UN resolution on human rights on the country as well as more..

Charge sheet for Matara hospital docs

Feb 26 (Island) The Health Ministry said it had, on Friday, taken steps to charge sheet all those responsible, at the Matara General Hospital, for the situation that led to the amputation of Colombo University final year law student Achala Priyadharshani’s left forearm. The spokesman for the Health Ministry said a special report, prepared by the Ministry’s Legal Division and charge sheets for all those responsible for the incident, had been sent to the Public Service Commission more..

President stresses need to foster religious and ethnic harmony

Feb 26 (DN) President Rajapaksa stressed the importance of people of different communities and religions forging closer bonds between them. He said all citizens should take the responsibility to promote ethnic and religious harmony. He was of the view that this type of bond would avert unnecessary problems. The President was speaking at the unveiling of a pinnacle of the newly constructed Dagaba more..

SL v WI, 3rd Women's ODI: West Indies win by 33 runs, take series 2-1

Feb 26 (CI) West Indies bowling and fielding charged them to a series win against Sri Lanka with a 33-run victory in the third ODI in Dambulla. After they managed to score only 191 for 9 in their 50 overs, West Indies defended their modest target led by Tremayne Smartt's figures of 2 for 26 from her 10 overs and four run-outs. Sri Lanka took advantage of their decision to field when they reduced West Indies to 51 for 4 within 15 overs. Eshani Kaushalya and Chamani Seneviratna struck twice each more..

Contest for Cricket Secretary post as well

Feb 26 (SM) The ‘Mirror’ understands that the President of the Colts Club Mr. Mathivanan is planning to contest for the post of Secretary in the Sri Lanka Cricket elections. Mathivanan will be contesting with the support of the Jayantha Dharmadasa group and it is reported that he will get from the sports associations in the Thilanga group as well. However it is also reported that the current Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga is making plans to apply for the post for the second time more..

'Int’l community duped by pro LTTE groups'

Feb 26 (DM) The international community seems to be unaware that it was being deceived by a well thought out strategy of LTTE rump groups, the Military said. Military spokesman Ruwan Wanigasooriya said the latest video by London based Channel-4 television station showed that the propaganda machinery of LTTE Rump groups had a dominating influence at the UNHRC. “This has been the case ever since the end of the more..

Police appoints a new Spokesman

Feb 26 (N360) Sri Lanka Police has appointed Superintendent of Police, G.M.H.B Siriwardena as its new Spokesman, announced the Island’s Police Department. Siriwardena was in-charge of the Police Examination Unit, before he was tasked with the new role. He assumed duties today. Former Police Spokesman SSP Prishantha Jayakody, who functioned as the Police Spokesman for two stints on different occasions, has been transferred to head the Police Examination Unit.

Yala Leopard fed to Crocodiles

Feb 26 (SM) A Leopard in the Yala sanctuary that was killed by an accident with a jeep that was being driven inside the sanctuary had been fed to the crocodiles. Those who traveled in the jeep have not reported to the wild life officials about this accident and however the Minister of Wild Life Conservation Mr. Vijith Vijithamuni Soysa had come to know about this accident and about the threats being faced by wild animals. Accordingly, the attention of the Ministry has been focused on a more..

Tamil activists urge India to co-sponsor anti-Lanka resolution

Feb 26 (PTI) Tamil rights activists on Tuesday urged India to co-sponsor a US resolution against Sri Lanka in the forthcoming session of UNHRC in Geneva and make it stronger. UK-based British Tamil Forum (BTF)and Tamils Against Genocide (TAG), a US-based Tamil advocacy group, today said that they hope India will not only co-sponsor the US based resolution but also bring out a stronger resolution. "We urge India to not just support more..

Salzburg Governor praises Sri Lanka

Feb 26 (GDI) Calling Sri Lanka a country "with much potential and richness of culture", the Governor of the state of Salzburg Gabi Burgstaller said "it is a beautiful place on earth that Austrians would like to visit." She made this comment at the 65th National Day which was celebrated at Hotel Radisson in Salzburg, coinciding with the opening of the Consulate of Sri Lanka on 7th Feb 2013. The Governor also reiterated her commitment to strengthen the relationship between more..

Govt should issue Halal certificates - ACJU

Feb 26 (CT) The All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama (ACJU) said today that the Govt of Sri Lanka should take full responsibility for the issuing of the Halal Certificates (HC) of the country, by creating an action plan similar to that followed in countries such as Thailand and Singapore. ACJU President M.I.M. Rizwe said, “To avoid continuous debate on this sensitive issue which could threaten the peaceful coexistence of the people of this country, we suggest that the Govt take over the process more..

DIG’s son speaks of assault

Feb 26 (DM) The condition of the son of DIG Ravi Waidyalankara, Asela Waidyalankara is currently reported to be stable and he is undergoing treatment at a leading private hospital in Colombo. Asela Waidyalankara said two Police officers in uniform who were on duty and had intervened during the assault were also allegedly assaulted by the gang which comprised the son of Minister Maithripala Sirisena. more..

Little one, sleep now; tomorrow you will rise

Feb 27 (NS) There are those who use Balachandran’s death for political purposes. We need not go into that very long list of names. Then there is another long list of those who mourn the shooting of a child, whose identity in terms of who his father was and what his father did, are largely irrelevant. It’s a longer list. That longer list is made of people who in the moment of considering the tragedy of a little boy being shot to death forget identity and politics and draw from the more..

Diplomatic dickering and damnable deceit

Feb 27 (NS) The demolition of the Tamil Tiger war machine by Sri Lanka’s security forces in May 2009 took the nation and the world by complete surprise. Our armed forces succeeded in what was thought an impossible mission by wiping out the world’s most ruthless terrorist outfit off the face of the earth. Since then there has not been a single terrorist attack in SL. The nation’s battling forces displayed in no uncertain terms that they were second to none in the sphere of armed combat. more..

The journey from the leaf to the cup

Feb 27 (SO) The road to New Peacock Estate from Gampola snakes through a panoramic view; rolling hills, lush greenery, streams, small townships, villages, schools and tea estates intermittently laid out. Some places are breathtakingly beautiful. So are many things in New Peacock Estate - the location of the tea factory, the General Manager's bungalow, the staff quarters, the Child Development Centre (the renamed more..

Sinhalabuddhism in Sri Lanka

Feb 27 (CT) If Lord Buddha were here now there is one thing he would do- ban Sinhalabuddhism in Sri Lanka! – With apologies to Mark Twain. As a Sri Lankan and a Buddhist by faith I take it upon myself, as others have not the right, to define the significant differences between the philosophy of Buddhism as per the teachings of Lord Buddha and what is practiced by the majority in this country under the umbrella of Buddhism. This I do, not to wear my religion on my sleeve but to explain to my more..

War on Halal-labelled products: The worst economic hit man now in town

Feb 27 (CT) Economic hit men are feared as well as loved. Feared because they hit you without you knowing from where you were hit; loved because they give you so much of excitement that you can talk about them for days without being bored. This was exactly what happened when John Perkins released ‘Confessions of an Economic Hit Man’ in 2004 alleging that the World Bank and US AID, two international agencies that provide development lending and aid to world’s poor countries, more..

Ex CJ under strict surveillance by 'officially' sanctioned Police acting 'unofficially'

Feb 27 (DBS) Dr.Shirani Bandaranayake who is regarded as the De-jure Chief Justice of Sri Lanka despite being “removed” from Office by President Rajapaksa after what seemed like a “witch trial” was conducted by seven Govt MPs of an eleven member PSC is being kept under Strict surveillance by “Officially” sanctioned Police acting “Unofficially”. It is learnt that Police personnel assigned for her protection stationed in the more..

Pilgrim’s regress: On the ‘usefulness’ of racism in Sri Lanka

Feb 27 (DBS) Purely for the sake of amusement, I encourage you to follow the Twitter account of the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS). Claiming to be the revival of ‘real Buddhism’, the BBS will ask you to ‘rise up’ against the issuing of Halal Certificates, and inform you that they are enlightening Buddhists of the threats from the ‘dark forces’ of the minority. And just when you think you have them pegged as insufferably extremist, they will retweet a quote from the Dalai Lama espousing the need more..

President keen on re-fleeting Mihin with US-made Boeing

Feb 27 (Island) The govt has decided to do away with Airbus and re-fleet its budget carrier Mihin Lanka with Boeing in the near future. Civil Aviation Minister Priyankara Jayaratne said that President Rajapaksa has expressed his keenness on purchasing the US manufactured Boeing in preference to the existing Airbus for Mihin Lanka. The Mihin fleet consists of three A-320 aircraft taken on lease at the moment. Jayaratne said, "The three airbus in the Mihin fleet will be more..

Who would feed the extra mouths?

Feb 27 (CT) Nick Clegg, the British Deputy PM and the Liberal Party Leader once famously said if the Britons want to have more children, which is perfectly fine, but they should be able to afford them. That is plain talking. That may even be politically suicidal should it be said in this part of the world. Clegg’s remarks were made with reference to families who have three to four kids, and who live off State benefits and still want to have more more..

A quick look at Sri Lanka’s LLRC progress

Feb 27 (GV) The administration of President Rajapaksa won the ethnic war, but Sri Lanka’s protracted conflict is more alive than ever. There is a lot of talk about how the situation in the North and East has improved, but most of these assertions are misleading. The rebuilding of physical infrastructure alone is not a very helpful indicator when it comes to reconciliation. The dearth of psychosocial assistance being provided, the thousands of disappeared who remain missing and the continued erosion more..

Editorial : What that beach brawl signifies

Feb 27 (Island) Politicians and their progeny on the wrong side of the law could always depend on the police to get them off the hook whenever they get into trouble. Similarly, errant law enforcement officers in the good books of the upper echelons of govt enjoy legal immunity. This symbiotic relationship, nay unholy alliance has, inter alia, brought about the near collapse of the rule of law in this country. But, on Sunday, there occurred an untoward incident where the police more..

Bleak fiscal prospects

Feb 27 (Island) The budget deficit, targeted at 5.8% of GDP this year, the lowest since 1977, is likely to be overshot by the govt with revenue as a percentage of GDP expected to fall further this year as economic challenges mount and expenditure exceeds targets, a research report shows. A research report by CT Smith Stockbrokers has forecast the budget deficit would overshoot the govt’s 5.8% of GDP target this year, more..

Independence is Process-IV

Feb 27 (Island) Western Christian colonialism has not ended. It has changed its face but after more than five hundred years it has been able to oppress the non Christians including the Catholics through various means including giving limited political independence to the colonial countries. The Catholic Chinthanaya has been defeated politically, economically and culturally. The Theravada Chinthanaya that can offer a different way of life resists the Greek Judaic Christian more..

Halalization and end of SL food culture

Feb 27 (CT) I spent my teenage at Sadasiripura, Athurugiriya. It is a middle-class housing scheme and as a result pluralistic in character. The house facing our house was occupied by the Jayasinghe family who were Sinhala Buddhists. The house to the left was occupied by the Zinnen family, who were Malays. The house to the right was occupied by the Ali family who were Moors. The house at the rear was occupied by the Muspret family who were Burghers. We were always together and more..

Exxon, Total study Sri Lanka oil reserves ahead of biggest sale

Feb 27 (BN) Exxon Mobil Corp. and Total SA are among explorers reviewing Sri Lanka’s oil and natural gas reserves ahead of the biggest auction of blocks planned by a nation that imports all its crude. Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest oil company by value, and Total, Europe’s third-largest, bought data related to the sale of 13 offshore fields, Saliya Wickramasuriya, director general at the Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat, said more..

Divineguma infuses new pride in state officials

Feb 27 (DN) State officials are working with new pride since the launch of Divineguma because they are now invested with the feeling that they have 'something' to do on behalf of Sri Lankans, Divineguma National Programme Director Jayatilleke Herath said. "They now have honour and dignity. When they retire, they can be proud of their service because of their contribution towards creating prosperous homes and a great motherland," he said. Herath said under Divineguma, more..

Ceylinco Shriram settles 60% in cash to 75% of investors

Feb 27 (Island) Ceylinco Shriram has successfully made payments to 4,330, nearly 75%, of their investors amounting to over 60% of their deposits in cash, as at now. The balance 1,443 (25%) of the investors have received payments averaging to over 20% of their investments in cash, sources said. The payments have been made in compliance with the payment plan submitted by the Board of Directors of Ceylinco Shriram to the Courts and its investors. The payment plan was prepared, with more..

US hopes Lanka will accept the new resolution

Feb 27 (CG) The US hops the Sri Lankan govt will show cooperation on the new resolution which will be submitted to the UNHRC next month. Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Esther Brimmer told the 22nd session of the UNHRC today that the new resolution will be to make sure the international community monitors progress and to again offer assistance on outstanding reconciliation and accountability more..

Dutch help for six main sectors

Feb 27 (DN) The Dutch govt will provide assistance to develop six main sectors of Sri Lanka including fisheries, agriculture, information technology and water management, Sri Lanka’s ambassador to Netherlands Buddhi Athauda said. He said Netherlands is well - known for ship building, fisheries, water management and agriculture. “Two thirds of the Netherlands is below sea level. But its not a challenge for the Dutch since they are experts in flood control, land and water management. more..

Rajapaksa burnt in effigy

Feb 27 (Hindu) Cadre of Pattali Makkal Katchi staged a demonstration in front of the Anna Statue near New Bus Stand in Krishnagiri on Tuesday, condemning “human rights violations” during the last leg of the war with the LTTE in Sri Lanka. They burnt President Mahinda Rajapaksa in effigy, in protest against “human rights violations’. Immediately after reports of violations by the Sri Lanka army against Tamils in Lanka and “killing” of twelve-year-old Balachandran, son of late LTTE chief more..

Shavendra’s lecture irks US Embassy

Feb 27 (Island) The US Embassy in Colombo has expressed concern over US Marines Corps inviting Sri Lanka Deputy Permanent Representative in New York Maj. Gen. Shavendra Silva to deliver a lecture at the prestigious Marine Corps University in South St. Quantico, New York recently. Well informed sources told The Island that the US Embassy had raised the issue with the State Department while asserting that the more..

Bloody secrets

Feb 27 (Economist) Nearly four years after its civil war ended, Sri Lanka is far from at peace over its recent history. Despite denials by the country’s leaders, notably its powerful defence secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, that Sri Lanka’s army committed war crimes in the final weeks of fighting, in 2009, troubling new evidence keeps on appearing. In March the UNHRC is expected to renew an American-led resolution calling on Sri Lanka’s govt to report on its efforts to more..

Church regrets latest mishap faced by Lankan pilgrims in TN

Feb 27 (Island) Bishop Emmanuel Fernando yesterday expressed deep regret over a group of Lankan Catholic pilgrims being prevented from visiting the Velankanni Church, in Tamil Nadu on Sunday night. The pilgrims had gone to Tamil Nadu to fulfill their religious wish and not to hurt or confront anyone, therefore it was a foolish act to prevent them from worshipping at a venerated shrine, the Bishop said. He also said that they would look into the matter further, but urged the more..

New detention laws only for Govt.’s political opponents: UNP

Feb 27 (FT) The UNP denounced the attack on Asela Waidyalankara by the son of a Senior Cabinet Minister, claiming that the immediate release of the suspects proved that the recently-enacted amendments to the detention laws in the country were only meant for use against political opponents. Asela Waidyalankara, who is the son of Batticaloa DIG Ravi Waidyalankara, is currently receiving treatment at a private hospital more..

Vietnam assures maximum support to Lanka

Feb 27 (DN) Vietnam will extend maximum support to Sri Lanka which is on its way to rapid development during the post war period, assured Vietnam’s visiting Deputy Speaker Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan when she called on Deputy Speaker Chandima Weerakkody with members of her delegation at the Parliamentary complex yesterday. The visiting Vietnamese Deputy Speaker noted that Sri Lanka had surpassed other countries in Asia in post war development and Vietnam more..

Athletics body’s plea to TN Govt.

Feb 27 (Hindu) The Secretary of the Asian Athletics Association, Maurice R. Nicholas has appealed to the Tamil Nadu State Govt to reconsider its decision to withdraw from conducting the Asian championship which was scheduled in the city from July 3 to 7. The Singapore-based official said that time was too short, just four months for any new host to plan and prepare for the major event considering that this was a competition involving athletes from 45 countries in the Asian continent. more..

'Sri Lanka doesn’t need Indian labour'

Feb 27 (Island) Sri Lanka did not have any plans to hire Indian migrant farm workers to meet the shortage of labour during harvests, Agriculture Minister Mahinda Yapa Apeywardena said. He was responding to a media report that he had said that he was discussing with the Ministries of Agriculture and Defence and also the Department of Immigration and Emigration on the prospects of getting down Indian farm workers on three more..