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People have lost faith in electoral process and politicians – CaFFE

July 25 (CT) People have lost faith in elections since the authorities have not kept to the promises made during the elections. This has become a serious issue for the good of the electoral system, the Campaign for Free and Fair Elections (CaFFE) said. CaFFE in a statement said: "In recent times CaFFE has noted that this situation has led to a severe loss of faith in representative democracy. In certain areas, the promises made are more..

Two drawings by George Keyt stolen

July 25 (FT) The Colombo Fort Magistrate issued an order on the Controller of Immigration and Emigration to prevent anyone leaving the country with two paintings of Sri Lanka’s most distinguished and renowned modern painter George Keyt, valued at Rs. 12 million, which are reported to have been stolen from John Keels Holdings. Meanwhile, the Magistrate Thilina Gamage directed the police media unit to take necessary action to make the public aware over the stolen paintings, more..

Karu willing to settle differences with Ranil

July 25 (DM) If UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe had any differences of opinion, UNP senior member, MP Karu Jayasuriya said he was ready to discuss them with the party leadership and patch things up, as his main concern was to bring the UNP back to power. Commenting on media reports that Wickremesinghe had invited Jayasuriya and Sajith Premadasa for a cordial discussion, Jayasuriya said he was still to receive such an invitation but he was ready to discuss any issue with more..

Constutution paving way for racism -JVP

July 25 (Island) The Sri Lankan Constitution paves the way for racism, as Section 18 states that Sinhala is the official language of Sri Lanka, JVP leader Somawansa Amarasinghe said. However, section 19 states that Sinhala and Tamil are the national languages of Sri Lanka, he said adding that it must be changed. Amarasinghe was addressing the launch of the JVP’s proposals to solve the national problem, titled more..

Dayasiri for Wayamba CM

July 25 (CT) President Rajapaksa had assured former UNP MP, Dayasiri Jayasekara, that he will be appointed the Chief Minister of the North-Western Province (Wayamba), once the UPFA secures victory at the polls. Earlier, Jayasekara was in two minds about joining the govt as he was not assured the Chief Minister post and he announced through media that he will not quit the UNP. However, after he had decided to join the UPFA upon receiving the assurance yesterday. more..

65 UNP MPs now with the govt.

July 25 (CT) With the crossover of Kurunegala District MP, Dayasiri Jayasekara, a total of 65 UNP MPs have left the party and joined the govt while Ranil Wickremesinghe remained the Leader. In addition to the large number of MPs who left the UNP, hundreds of Provincial Council members and local body members who strongly oppose the leadership of Ranil Wickremesinghe and are also joining the govt. With the resignation of Jayasekara, the Opposition Leader and five members of more..

Dayasiri going, going, gone

July 25 (Island) UNP MP Dayasiri Jayasekera resigned from his parliamentary seat after making a statement in Parliament, where he said that he would lead the UPFA campaign at the North-Western Provincial Council to victory and become its Chief Minister. As Jayasekera accused the UNP leadership of inaction and being shiftless, opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe remained in his seat listening to accusations. more..

Don’t plunder or blunder with public funds

July 25 (DM) While govt leaders and their so-called economic experts continue to boast if not tell lies about high economic growth rates, per capita income and making Sri Lanka the miracle of Asia, a parliamentary committee on Tuesday issued a shocking report that that was like a thunderbolt to Parliament and the country. The Committee on Public Enterprises--which for many years has been issuing shattering reports-- exposed the dangerous mess in state enterprises, and appealed that more..

Conducting National Inquiries at international standards

July 25 (DM) Over the past 20 years, national human rights institutions in the Asia region have pioneered the use of national inquiries as a way to investigate and respond to a range of complex, systemic human rights issues. In Sri Lanka a national Inquiry has not conducted up to date but preparing for the first ever national Inquiry in the near future. National inquiries are one of the most effective strategies available to national human rights institutions for investigating and more..

'I'll have a say in deciding northern CM'

July 25 (DM) Q: You said right throughout that you would be the chief ministerial candidate of the UPFA for the Northern Provincial Council Election. Now the election has been declared. What is your stand now? A: I will make an official stand on the election only after the date of the election is announced by the Elections Commissioner. I need some more time to clarify certain matters in view of this election. more..

Diaspora factor and Northern polls

July 25 (SL) The TNA faced not one but two situations last week where there was much discord within the party on selecting suitable candidates ahead of the Northern Provincial Council elections. Initially the debate was if former Supreme Court Judge C.V. Wigneswaran or TNA General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah is the most suitable candidate for the Chief Minister post. Once that was settled and as they say “the rest is now history” more..

Hambantota Port receives only 24 vessels during 2011-12

July 25 (DM) Magampura Mahinda Rajapaksa Port (MMRP) in Hambantota has received only 24 vessels in total during the years 2011 and 2012, the latest COPE Report disclosed. The first phase of MMRP, built using Chinese funding, was opened for operations in November 2010. The port which was touted as a landmark project that could challenge ports in India and Singapore had only received 6 ships more..

Navy to bring ashore stranded Australia-bound illegal migrants

July 25 (MoD) Sri Lanka Navy has made arrangements to bring ashore the 73 Australia-bound Sri Lankans stranded in the south eastern seas of Sri Lanka. Navy had informed a merchant vessel heading for Singapore to rescued the people onboard the ill fated boat 290 nautical miles south east of Galle on 24th. Navy has on operation a round the clock vigil over the territorials waters to curb illegal immigration and human more..

Battle hots up even before nominations

July 25 (ST) With four days to go for the nominations for the polls in three provinces, signs of winning-at-all costs have already emerged amidst poster wars and reports that parties are preparing to field their big guns. Nominations will be accepted from political parties and independent groups at the nine district secretaries in the three provinces from July 25 to August 1 for the September elections. more..

'I am getting accepted in Bollywood now'

July 25 (PTI) With two big budget films "Kick" and "Roy" in her kitty, Sri Lankan beauty Jacqueline Fernandez feels she has finally found a space for herself in Bollywood. The 28-year-old model-actress, who began her acting career with Sujoy Ghosh's box office bomb "Aladin" in 2009, said being an outsider it was tough for her to make a mark. "It has been a very gradual process for me as I was a newcomer from Sri Lanka. more..

'Dayasiri committed political Hara-kiri'

July 25 (Island) UNP MP Harin Fernando said that his erstwhile colleague Dayasiri Jayasekera had committed political Hara-kiri by resigning from the MP post to contest the forthcoming North Western Provincial Council on the ruling party ticket. MP Fernando said that he was ashamed of Dayasiri’s conduct as he had repeatedly promised that he would not leave the party. "I have assured people, in media interviews and TV more..

President condoles with China

July 25 (CG) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has sent a message of condolence to Chinese President Xi Jinping following the earthquake that struck in the Gansu Province in northwestern China on Monday. “On behalf of the Govt and the people of Sri Lanka, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the families who have suffered from this disaster,” President said in his message. more..

Basil urges EU delegation to encourage investors

July 25 (GDI) Minister Basil Rajapaksa briefed a visiting European Parliament Delegation recently on the investment opportunities available in Sri Lanka in several areas including the pharmaceutical industry, Kandy Expressway Construction, water supply and drainage systems and motor spares manufacture. He also told the delegation that the government is taking steps to raise the living standards more..

No change in Centre's stand on SL Tamil's issue: PM tells Jayalalithaa

July 25 (PTI) Holding that there was no change in India's stand on the issue of reconciliation and devolution of political powers to ethnic Tamils in Sri Lanka, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has informed Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa that New Delhi will work towards ensuring that Tamils are "masters of their own destiny within framework of a united Sri Lanka." "There is absolutely no change in Govt of India's stand on the question of more..

Rajapaksa’s Olcott Buddhist Card

July 25 (CT) The world before it being discovered, the individual societies across the globe lived a life, free of aggression and occupation by others. Every society that lived had it’s Rulers either Monarchies or Tribal Leaders to fend and protect their subjects. Once the world was discovered there started Trade and Colonization of the weaker by the stronger. Wars have been waged between countries for supremacy, dominance or Religious reasons. Thereafter the Monarchies have been more..

COPE's call on the deaf

July 25 (CT) The latest report released by the COPE is revealing. The changes that it recommends are sweeping and could be game-changing, yet the question whether the govt would take this 'report' with the kind of seriousness it deserves, remains redundant given the scant attention paid to its predecessors. The ills of today's public enterprises are many, but the cardinal sin from which all ills flow remains the twin issues of nepotism and cronyism – packing govt-run institutions with more..

Cameron to raise concerns

July 25 (CG) British Prime Minister David Cameron will press UK concerns on Sri Lanka in line Britain’s own assessment of the situation in Sri Lanka when he visits the country in November. Senior Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Govt and Foreign and Commonwealth Office Baroness Sayeeda Warsi told the House of Lords that Cameron and UK foreign secretary, William Hague will raise their concerns when they more..

Sri Lanka stocks close down 0.7%

July 25 (LBO) Stocks closed down 0.67% on Thursday with large cap stocks and banking sector making losses. The Colombo All Share Index closed 40.98 points lower at 6,038.16 and the S&P SL 20 Index closed 24.63 points lower at 3,423.48 down 0.71%. Turnover was 290 million rupees down from 291 million Wednesday. Foreigners brought 36 million rupees worth shares while selling 13 million rupees of shares, in a day that 76 stocks advanced and 1114 declined. more..

Former CEB Vice Chairman warns against repeating past wrongs

July 25 (Island) If the forthcoming Sampur power plant was not properly handled it would be another debacle in the history of setting up power plants here, former CEB Vice Chairman Anura Wijayapala said. "This will deprive Sri Lankan citizens as well as the industries their last chance of having cheap electricity even in the distant future," he said. Wijayapala, who is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Electrical Engineering of the Moratuwa University, said, more..

'It's time our batting started winning matches for the team'

July 25 (CI) 23-year-old batsmen Dinesh Chandimal and Lahiru Thirimanne were named captain and vice-captain for the first two matches of the ODI series against South Africa. The move was a strong signal from Sri Lanka's selectors - that they expect both men to inherit the top-order mantle that will eventually be vacated by Sangakkara and Mahela. ESPNcricinfo spoke to the two about expectations, batting in unfamiliar positions, more..

'Now, military has entered PC polls campaign'

July 25 (Island) Over four years after the war had ended people expected a return to normalcy, but the military had taken over all walks of life, with soldiers now being forced to do the political work of the Rajapaksa regime, the UNP said yesterday. Senior Vice President of the UNP Lakshman Kiriella, said that the UPFA govt was humiliating the war heroes who should be allowed to perform their legal duties. Security forces personnel had also been asked to sell vegetables and clean drains. more..

President congratulates Japanese PM on election victory

July 25 (SLBC) President Rajapaksa has congratulated Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe in the landslide victory in the recent general election, gaining control of both chambers of the Diet. President said this victory would no doubt indicate the confidence reposed in premier Abe by the people of Japan. This would also pave the way for further political stability and economic resurgence. Sri Lanka and Japan have enjoyed warm and friendly ties from historic times. more..

Tamil community marks 30th anniversary of Black July riots

July 25 (IT) Scarborough’s Tamil community this week is remembering the Black July riots, a week of anti-Tamil violence 30 years ago blamed for three decades of civil war in Sri Lanka. Black July is “the main reason you will see hundreds of thousands of Tamils in Canada now,” David Poopalapillai, spokesperson for the Canadian Tamil Congress said Tuesday. The Scarborough-based Congress added every more..

3 Indians arrested for doing business illegally

July 25 (CG) Three Indian nationals have been arrested for violating Sri Lankan visa regulations. Two Indians were arrested in Karadiyanaru, Batticaloa while being involved in selling items in the area. The Indians had been in Sri Lanka on a tourist visa. Based on information received by the police the two Indians were arrested last evening, the police media unit said today.. The police said that the Indians, aged 35 and 37, will be produced before a Magistrate today. more..

UAE-based Emirates NBD hunts more business in Sri Lanka

July 25 (LBO) Emirates NDB Capital which syndicated a 200 million dollar loan for Sri Lanka's state-run Bank of Ceylon is looking to provide more local firms with Islamic and conventional finance, a top official said. "We are looking to do similar transactions with other financial institutions," chief executive Mohammad Wajid Kamran said. "We are looking to extend the partnership with Bank of Ceylon and other banks so that we can also tap the corporate sector." more..

Teacher kneeler Sarath Kumara imprisoned again

July 25 (LB) Former North Western Provincial Council (NWPC) member Ananda Sarath Kumara who was released on bail for allegedly punishing a school teacher has been further remanded until August 8 for violating his bail conditions. The NWPC member was granted bail on June 27. The Councillor was arrested for allegedly punishing a school teacher Susila Herath and was remanded by Puttalam Magistrate’s Court. more..

Kulasekara keeps India U-19 at bay

July 25 (WI) Sri Lanka Under-19 needed a special effort from their batsmen to remain alive in their four-day match against India Under-19, and on the third day of the match on Thursday, they got just that at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium. Kavindu Kulasekara, not out on 5 overnight, was immovable, and his patient vigil at the crease took Sri Lanka to 235 for 5 from 104 overs at close of play, still trailing India by 268 runs. Only 211 runs were scored on the day off 88 overs, but crucially more..

T20 Rankings: Sri Lanka on top

July 25 (IC) Sri Lanka retained their position as the number-one ranked T20 side after the annual update of the ICC T20I rankings table, which was announced on Thursday. The annual update was released just two days before Pakistan takes on defending ICC World T20 champions West Indies in a two-match series, starting on July 27 in St. Vincent. At the June ICC board meeting, it was agreed to change the T20I rankings period from three years to four years. more..

Plantations protest numbering 20,000 averted by Defense Secy.

July 25 (Island) A planned protest by about 20,000 planters and support staff on July 12 against the recent killing of a senior planter had been averted because of personal intervention of Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Ceylon Planters’ Society President Nisala Jayawardena revealed. He had informed the CPS that measures would be taken to ensure there would not be any breakdown of law and order on the Plantations. more..

Moratuwa Dy Mayor further remanded over monk’s death

July 25 (AD) The five suspects in the murder of the chief incumbent of the Sunandopanandaramaya Temple in Egoda Uyana, including the Deputy Mayor of Moratuwa, have been further remanded until August 08 by Moratuwa Additional Magistrate M.M. Nihar. Ven Matiyagahathenna Wimalawansa Thera was stabbed to death on February 03 over a land dispute while two suspects in the murder were found shot dead in Bandaragama the following morning. Deputy Mayor of the Moratuwa more..

New inventions by Anuradhapura students

July 25 (GDI) Four students attached to the Tammennapura Vidyalaya in Anuradhapura have created five new inventions by sharpening their talents and skills. They have been assisted in their efforts by the principal and staff of the school. The inventions include a wall painting machine, a soil crushing machine, a lime plucker, a motorcycle valve safety machine and a novel door mat. Shaluka Sahan, a Grade 6 student has invented the painting machine and the lime plucker. more..

'I knew of Dayasiri’s intentions'

July 25 (AD) UNP MP John Amaratunga says he knew that Dayasiri Jayasekara had wanted to resign for the past 3 to 4 years and that the former MP had his eyes set on the Chief Minister post even during the previous election in the North Western Province. Dayasiri Jayasekara resigned from his parliamentary seat on Wednesday to contest the North Western Provincial Council election under the ruling UPFA ticket. more..

Environmental degradation

July 25 (ST) Despite mangroves being part of a vital coastal ecosystem protecting the shoreline from erosion, residents complain that heavy equipment has been used to completely destroy a lush green 24-acre mangrove at Puliyankudah, Kaka Adiya on the Mohoththuwarama Island in Kalpitiya near Puttalam. The area is also rich in biodiversity and therefore clearing of mangrove forests is illegal. Convener of the Mohoththuwarama land protection committee A.M.A. Ayub said that more..

Police warns not to go naked for Dayasiri

July 25 (SM) A person who was preparing to walk across Deraniyagala town wearing nothing but the underwear today, was taken in to police custody upon a complaint lodge b the residents in the area. The reason for this humorous act is a lost bet, wage by a person that Mr. Dayasiri Jayasekera will never leave the UNP. This 43 year old person named Shantha Thilakarathne aka yogurt Shantha living in Ilkuthenna, has set up a bet with his neighbor 3 days ago that if Mr Dayasiri leaves UNP, more..

Video: NUAPC urges PSC to reveal stance prior to NPC polls

July 25 (DM) The National Collective Against the Provincial Councils System (NCAPCS) said the decision of the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) appointed to look into the 13th Amendment should be revealed before the upcoming Northern Provincial Council elections. “The govt promised to amend two clauses of the 13th Amendment. But because of either the influence of India or some other force, more..