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Jaffna University to resume on Jan. 16

Jan 4 (DM) Academic activities of the Jaffna University will begin on January 16 after a two-month disruption following the arrest and detention of four students by the military. The four students who are detained at a rehabilitation camp in Welikanda had reportedly requested their colleagues to attend lectures stating that the authorities had promised them they would be released soon. They had conveyed this message to the Deans and Lecturers who had spoken to the students more..

More needs to be done for IDPs return - UN

Jan 4 (DM) UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said more needs to be done by the Sri Lankan govt of the country of origin, to create conditions for people to feel comfortable about considering the possibility of returning from India. Mr. Guterres, who was the former Prime Minister of Portugal said, “It has to do with the living conditions, work, education, health, property and security; these are all key more..

Sri Lanka targets $1.5bn FDI this year after missing 2012 goal

Jan 4 (Reuters) Sri Lanka hopes to attract $1.5 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2013 after missing the target of $2 billion last year, the country's Treasury Secretary said on Friday. The $59 billion economy had aimed for a record $2 billion FDI in 2012, a two-fold increase from the previous year. "We would have got a foreign direct investment of around $1 billion, similar to the previous year," Treasury Secretary P.M. Jayasundera told reporters in Colombo. more..

How did 14 sudden deaths occur at Jaffna Teaching hospital?

Jan 4 (OU) When deaths increase, it should be investigated and notified to Health Ministry, and ample medical assistance should be obtained. Concerning the death, hospital Director and Regional Health Service Directors should conduct adequate investigations. 14 petitions had been filed in Jaffna courts concerning the 14 deaths occurred last year in the Jaffna district during pregnancy and deaths owning to diseases. Concerning 14 deaths, Coroner M.Udayasiri has filed petitions at more..

'Comply with SC ruling and enact new law'

Jan 4 (DM) The UNP today urged the govt to introduce laws in line with the Commonwealth ‘Latimer House Principals’ on the removal of judges before going ahead with the impeachment motion. UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake said this was the best option for the govt in the wake of the Supreme Court determination which declared that Parliament Standing Orders were not laws. Mr. Attanayake said a more..

Ford defends Sri Lanka's use of DRS

Jan 4 (CI) Sri Lanka coach Graham Ford has defended his side's poor use of the DRS on day two in Sydney, after they burnt a review in Rangana Herath's first over, but did not refer an lbw shout that would have been turned in their favour a few overs later. Sri Lanka could have had Michael Clarke out first ball when Herath struck him on the pad with one that pitched outside off stump and straightened, but were unsure if Clarke had inside edged a ball onto his pad. The unsuccessful review more..

Sri Lanka criticised over 'war tourism'

Jan 4 (Telegraph) The lagoon of Nanthi Kadal, on the island’s north coast, was, in 2009, the scene of atrocities in the Sri Lankan army’s final push against the Tamil Tigers. Now the location, where the UN estimates tens of thousands of civilians were killed, is the setting for army-run holiday homes. One teak villa was opened by the president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, and his brother, the defence secretary. “Enjoy a soothing holiday and the cool breeze of Nanthi Kadal lagoon,” is how the three more..

Sri Lanka's utilisation of Herath baffling

Jan 4 (CI) In Samuel Beckett's tragicomedy 'Waiting for Godot', the play's two protagonists await the arrival of a man named Godot, whom they feel they know and must arrive soon. In reality, neither has ever actually had much to do with Godot, and ultimately, he never comes. For large periods of day two in Sydney, Sri Lanka lingered for magic to materialise, but their passivity did not yield the results they required to become more..

Lankan investment profession stands at cross roads

Jan 5 (Island) State-managed funds should have a proper good governance regime in place adhering to internationally-accepted best practices, says Heraymila Securities Ltd CEO Ravi Abeysuriya, "It is imperative that state-owned institutional funds such as EPF, ETF, NSB, SLIC and others that manage public funds have proper governance structures by adapting globally accepted standards of best practice," emphasizes Abeysuriya. "The investment profession stands at cross roads. more..

Lanka’s own Dani Girl tugs at heartstrings with ‘Danny Boy’

Jan 5 (ST) Driving, or rather superhighway racing, to Galle was our first thought after attending the Sri Lanka-Asia debut concert of opera star Danielle de Niese on Nov 14, at the Cinnamon Grand. Galle was where she would give her second concert, one week later. We had to enjoy a repeat of the riches we had just heard in a performance that was “great”, “grand”, “glorious” – to quote music-lovers present that Nov 14 evening. The internationally acclaimed lyric soprano, with family roots in Sri Lanka more..

What GL told diplomats

Jan 5 (CT) Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs met with the diplomatic corps in Colombo last month and briefed them on the political process and talks with the TNA, and the impeachment of the CJ. Following are the salient points of the briefing. Talks with the TNA: The period spent talking to the TNA in a bilateral process was not time wasted. The suggestion in certain quarters that nothing constructive had emerged from the more..

Assets and liabilities: To political parties

Jan 5 (CT) This is a follow up on my previous letter to the Speaker of Parliament on Assets and Liabilities. While the Speaker is held responsible for declaration of Assets and Liabilities of MPs, political parties can not evade responsibility in ensuring their party MPs adhering to the law of the land that goes beyond the law. I honestly believe you are aware by now of the letter I have already addressed to the Hon. Speaker of parliament on the above subject on 25 Dec 2012, requesting his assistance more..

A stooge Chief Justice in the horizon

Jan 5 (CT) The controversy regarding the impeachment of the CJ is strongly debated in many corners and general public is holding the view that the govt has messed up everything with this unnecessary manure. The debate is also taking place in the international arena. The Canadian Bar Association has requested the Canadian govt to re consider the participation of the Canadian Prime Minister at the upcoming Commonwealth Heads of State Meeting in Sri Lanka. more..

Batik with a touch of oomph!

Jan 5 (ST) Darshi Keerthisena is that rare hybrid – an astute businesswoman and the head of her own company on one hand and on the other a master designer with an enviable body of work to her credit. Where you might see an item of clothing, Darshi sees a canvas and way to reinvent an old and beloved art form. Nobody does batik quite like her. Darshi wears a batik t-shirt paired with a denim skirt to her interview with the more..

Paper leak, tuition, and legislation

Jan 5 (Island) The Island editorial of 27th Dec, on "Of that question paper leak," addresses another important issue that is seriously affecting our education system, in particular, and the governance in general. As I wrote in one of my previous articles, the school education in Sri Lanka is a topic that needs to be thoroughly discussed as the system certainly needs a complete overhauling. In this article, I will concentrate on the specific issue of "tuition regulation by legislation" that is more..

Sri Lanka needs a service that is public

Jan 5 (Island) The Sri Lankan public service was established in the 19th century for the collection of tax revenue and maintenance of law and order for the benefit of colonial masters. It served the "Master" well and it is still serving the "Master" well. Independence is not a pre-requisite to serve the "Master". Then why bother about it? Work connected with elections has, very often, been cited as the best example of an independent public service. It is true that the public service is more..

Operators rocking the boat?

Jan 5 (NS) The boat tragedy at Tissa Wewa in Tissamaharama on Dec 22 has once again pointed the spotlight at the appallingly lax safety standards of local tour boat operators.In the latest tragedy that took place in Tissa Wewa, it was revealed that 22 persons were onboard a vessel meant to carry just 8. Seven lives were lost when that boat capsized. The boat operator, reports claim, was under the influence of liquor more..

Editorial: Cohabit and get buried?

Jan 5 (Island) People have been complaining of high cost of living (CoL). Trade unions have been fighting quite a battle to win pay hikes but in vain. Now , they have something else to worry about—the CoD (Cost of Dying) and CoM (Cost of Marrying). The government has increased the marriage registration fee and crematorium charges substantially. It was due to the Portuguese influence that social concepts such as monogamy and the sanctity of marriage were absorbed into Sri Lankan culture and more..

Forex, primary dealers welcome Central Bank’s 2013 Road Map

Jan 5 (FT) The foreign exchange and debt market yesterday welcomed the Central Bank’s ‘Road Map for 2013 and Beyond,’ unveiled on Wednesday. The Central Bank announced a slew of new measures to be implemented with immediate effect and during 2013 and beyond, aimed at improving the foreign exchange and debt market. The Sri Lanka Forex Association (SLFA) said that it welcomed the recent exchange control relaxations announced in the latest Road Map. The SLFA has held more..

No future without forgiveness and reconciliation

Jan 5 (Island) From the latter part of the nineteen sixties to the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, there had been increasing violence and acts of terrorism by the para-militaries on both sides of the sectarian divide in Northern Ireland. The British security forces were being accused of providing assistance in a variety of ways to the loyalist para-militaries. In 1989, a Catholic lawyer Pat Finucane was assassinated by more..

Hail to the land of Big Miracles

Jan 5 (Island) Having passed the much awaited "End of the World" with only major flooding in many parts of the island and considerable rumblings about fair play and due process down Hulftsdorp way, there is all the reason to believe that we do live in an age of miracles. It seems likely that as many believed the so-called end of the Mayan calendar was not the End of the World, but the end of an era, and the start of a new one. All signs, at least from what we can see in Sri Lanka are that, more..

Separatism begins in school - Dullas

Jan 5 (Island) Sri Lanka cannot point finger at only the LTTE leader for the separatist chaos in the country as it is seen within the education system. Therefore, its foundation was in the school system itself, Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said. He pointed out that the division of schools as Buddhist, Muslim, Tamil, Hindu, Catholic, and Sinhala, as well as Girls’ and Boys’ have created a type of separatism. The Minister made these remarks at the opening ceremony of the more..

Soth Korean govt. provides US$ 290 mn soft loan till 2015

Jan 5 (Island) A Framework Arrangement which will enable the Sri Lankan Govt to obtain a soft loan from the South Korean Govt up to US$290 million till 2015 was signed on Dec 31, 2012. This Framework Arrangement is based on the MoU which was signed between the two countries at the summit meeting during the state visit of President Rajapaksa to Korea last April. Under the arrangement, the two Govts are expected to more..

GIC (1919) receives nearly 1.5 million calls in 2012

Jan 5 (DN) The Govt Information Centre (1919) received nearly 1.5 million calls last year. Most calls were from the Western Province, ICT Agency of Sri Lanka said in a release yesterday. The Railway Department, Registration of Person Department, Motor Traffic Department and the Sri Lanka Police Department topped the list. About 350,000 persons accessed the official Government Information Centre website and out of these, over 1,000 persons lodged complaints, the release said. more..

'Conserve Kalpitiya ecosystem'

Jan 5 (DN) Kalpitiya has a sensitive aquatic ecosystem, rich in biodiversity and those who make use of this ecosystem should be extremely careful in obtaining its resources, said Soba Sumithuro - Friends of Nature community based environmental conservation organization chief consultant Ravi de Silva. He said so on the occasion of the formation of a branch of Soba Sumithuro organization at the Kudawa village, Kandakuliya in the Kalpitiya area of Puttlam District recently. more..

Sri Lankan dishes answer call for inspiration

Jan 5 (NYT) The other day, as I was thumbing through cookbooks looking for inspiration, I came upon a recipe for chicken with cashews, and not the bland Chinese-American version that was so popular for a while. Madhur Jaffrey, the prolific authority on Indian cooking, had a Sri Lankan version in her fascinating book, “From Curries to Kebabs,” published in 2003. In it, she describes the path beginning in India that took curries to more..

ILO helps Sri Lanka war victims pick up the pieces

Jan 5 (ILO) As the morning sun glints off the pristine waters of Poonakary Lagoon, fishermen haul in their latest catch of crab in a serene scene that contrasts with the grim years of Sri Lanka’s bitter civil war. Most of the villagers in the northern district of Kilinochchi were displaced during the 26-year conflict that exacted a massive toll and shattered many businesses, including fisheries. When they returned to their homes in 2009, they had to start from scratch. Their boats and fishing gear more..

Moratuwa University: Re-opening closed sections decision on Monday

Jan 5 (Island) The date for re-opening the temporarily closed sections of the Moratuwa University will be decided after a meeting between two the student factions and officials on Monday. Vice Chancellor Prof. Ananda Jayawardane said that the university’s Engineering Faculty and Institute of Technology had been closed indefinitely following a clash between students of the two institutions on Tuesday night. The university premises and hostels had also more..

'Categorisation of schools out soon'

Jan 5 (DN) The categorisation of schools on communal, religious and gender basis will be done away with in the future, Minister Bandula Gunawardena said. He was addressing a meeting at Nugawela MMV which was transformed into a secondary school by amalgamating it with Nugawela Balika Vidyalaya and Nugawela (Boys) Maha Vidyalaya recently. He said up to now, 3% of all schools in the country have been more..

Upul Jayasuriya to vie for BASL presidency

Jan 5 (Island) Attorney-at-Law and present Secretary of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka Upul Jayasuriya has decided to contest for the presidency of the association. "I have been encouraged by many a senior and junior members of the Bar, from Colombo and outstations, to offer myself for the office of president of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka," he said. The full text of the release: "I have been informed that the present President of the BASL Wijedasa Rajapaksha has decided more..

Beware of pyramid scams via internet - SLCERT

Jan 5 (Island) The Sri Lanka Computer Emergency Response Team (SLCERT) warned the public to avoid clicking internet advertisements promising big financial earnings as there was an increasing trend in the promotion of internet pyramid schemes targeting Lankans. SLCERT urged Internet users to safeguard themselves from various offers like on-line jobs via ad clicking. According to SLCERT, during the past few years there have been thousands of people who lost their money more..

Toxic gas emission cause for Sapugasakanda oil refinery accident

Jan 5 (DN) Last year's fatal accident at the Sapugasakanda oil refinery was due to the release of a toxic gas, said Minister Susil Premajayantha after receiving the report presented to him by the three member special committee yesterday. The accident at the Sapugaskanda oil refinery on November 16, 2012 at Unit 15 (Kero Merox) in area 1, killed two refinery workers who were reportedly engaged in repair work. more..

BOI on ‘rogue ventures’

Jan 5 (Island) Apropos our front page news item Bad loans to foreigners cost state banks Rs. 5 bn (Jan. 1) and editorial, Crooks profiting from emerging miracle (Jan. 2), the Board of Investment has, in a letter signed by its Director (Media and publicity) Dilip S. Samarasinghe, has said: "I am writing to express the concern, of the BOI on the highly damaging, abovementioned articles. The first point that needs to be made is that the problem indicated in the article about unscrupulous more..

Rat Fever warning in flood-affected areas

Jan 5 (DN) The Health Ministry warned the public of a possible outbreak of Rat Fever (Letospirosis) in flood-affected areas. The public should be vigilant about any type of fever. Ten Leptospirosis patients have been reported from Polonnaruwa district within one week, a Health Ministry spokesman said. According to the spokesman, a high number of Leptospirosis patients had been reported from all three districts in the Western Province. Kegalle, Kurunegala, Ratnapura, Matara and Galle more..

Sri Lanka in last-ditch bid to save housemaid

Jan 5 (AN) The Sri Lankan govt has made a last-ditch attempt to save a housemaid from the gallows during a discussion held between the island nation's justice minister and the Saudi ambassador in Colombo on Thursday. This was confirmed by the former Sri Lankan consul general in Jeddah, Masihudeen Inamullah, who took part in the discussions. Inamullah, who is in Colombo, spoke to Arab News by telephone yesterday. more..

Rs. 42.5 b loan from Japan to expand BIA

Jan 5 (FT) The Govt has signed a Rs. 42.5 billion loan agreement with Japan to expand the country’s only international airport at Katunayake. Airport and Aviation Services Ltd. and Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) have signed the loan agreement for Japanese Yen 29 billion to finance the expansion of the BIA and future developments. Cabinet has granted its approval for the project, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2015, to proceed. more..

93% attendance at leadership training programme

Jan 5 (CT) The leadership training programme for university entrants, carried out by the Ministry of Defence and the UGC, is highly successful, with 93% of the entrants attending the programme. The ministry said in a statement 8,757 that students have been selected for the leadership training programme, and out of that number, 8,169 have attended the programme sessions. Approximately 93% of the entrants were present, making it 20% more than the number participated at the more..

Ganeshan says solution lies in implementing 13th Amendment

Jan 5 (Island) Leader of the DPF Mano Ganeshan urged the govt to implement the 13th Amendment to the Constitution without further delay. Ganeshan said that the implementation of the 13th Amendment was a prerequisite for the post-war national reconciliation process. The government should allow elected members to make decisions on behalf of those living in the Northern and Eastern Provinces without trying to more..

New passenger terminal at Palaly airport

Jan 5 (MoD) A new terminal has been added to ease passenger operations at Palay air port. The fully equipped air movement building was constructed by SLAF Palaly. The new terminal was a long felt need for both military and civil air passengers who travel between Palaly and Colombo. The new facility was declared open by Commander of the Air Force Air Marshal Harsha Abeywickrama at a function held at the Palay Air Port today (4). With the post war more..

'Who will judge PSC judges?' asks Ravi K.

Jan 5 (FT) A senior Govt member has been given a house by Ceylinco, the same company that featured prominently in the impeachment proceedings against CJ Shirani Bandaranayake, UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake said. The UNP MP, who declined to mention names but said the Govt Minister in question should come forward with the admission, said the house was located in Kurunegala, in front of the Athgal Viharaya. “The address is 90/174 Colombo Road, Kurunegala,” more..