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'A temperature rise by two degrees unavoidable'

Mar 28 (DN) A temperature rise by another two Celsius degrees would be unavoidable if the world does not close down all its coal power plants by 2030, Minister Champika Ranawaka said. He was participating at the Earth Hour national programme at Mahindarama Viharaya in Ethul Kotte on Saturday. Earth Hour was observed from 8.30 pm to 9.30 pm by switching off the lights for one hour. The minister said the existence of humans on the planet will be decided within the next 100 years, more..

A role for Sri Lanka in US pivot to Asia

Mar 28 (TH) As economic and political power shifts east, western nations are responding by reinforcing trade and security alliances across Asia. With the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement, a new military base in Australia, and deepening alliances across the region, the U.S. has recommitted to the Asia Pacific. As President Obama’s foreign policy pivots to Asia and the vision of “America’s Pacific Century” unfolds, U.S. more..

Move to upgrade 22 national parks

Mar 28 (DN) Arrangements are being made to upgrade 22 national parks in the country as environmental tourist destinations. The Wildlife Department will develop infrastructural facilities for eco-friendly tourism at 62 national sanctuaries. Eco-tourism is planned in conformity with the provisions of the fauna and flora Act. Wildlife Ministry secretary, engineer Udeni wickramasinghe said local and foreign tourists visiting national parks, mainly Wilpatthu and Yala, have increased rapidly. more..

High-level Chinese trade delegation here

Mar 28 (Island) As bilateral trade volumes between Sri Lanka and China topped US$ 2.67 billion in 2012, a high level trade delegation from China arrived yesterday. "We warmly welcome the Chinese trade team led by no less than the Vice Governor of Yunnan Province, Ding Shaoxiang. This visit is a strong boost to the growing Lanka-China bilateral trade. I am also pleased that my visit to Yunnan in June 2012 has resulted in key trade developments," said minister Rishad Bathiudeen more..

From a bitter critic to Eelam champion

Mar 28 (Hindu) From a bitter critic of the LTTE to a champion of the ‘Tamil Eelam’ cause, the political evolution of the AIADMK headed by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has always been a roller-coaster ride. Her political mentor M.G. Ramachandran gave political and monetary support to the LTTE led by Prabhakaran to purchase arms and the militant group was seen as being closer to the AIADMK than the DMK. more..

Editorial: Of Jayalalithaa’s bouncers

Mar 28 (Island) It looks as if TN Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa had resorted to UDI (Unilateral Declaration of Independence). She runs her state according to her whims and fancies without caring two hoots about the writ of the Centre. India is urging Sri Lanka to respect human rights—quite rightly so—but regrettably it cannot even safeguard Sri Lankan cricketers’ right to play on its soil! Jayalalithaa has banned them from playing in the IPL matches to be held in Chennai. more..

With fair-weather friends like these …

Mar 28 (Hindu) A photograph often cuts through tonnes of verbiage and exposes the truth. One such photograph was published on March 19 soon after the DMK president M. Karunanidhi announced his party’s withdrawal from the United Progressive Alliance govt led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. It showed a handful of smiling DMK cadres outside party headquarters distributing bright yellow “laddus” as fireworks were set off “celebrating” the party’s decision. more..

Fearless Kusal impresses captain

Mar 28 (CI) Angelo Mathews, the Sri Lanka captain, has lauded the aggression and confidence of new batsman Kusal Perera, who helped the team achieve two rapid starts in the first two ODIs, after being pushed up the order. Perera came into the side as a wicketkeeper batsman who bats in the middle order, but has since been elevated to opener in both ODIs and Twenty20s. He and Dilshan blitzed 83 runs in the first 8 overs more..

Bangladesh eye series-levelling win

Mar 28 (CI) The second-ODI washout may have disturbed the flow of the series, but for Bangladesh it has comes as a welcome opportunity. Bangladesh have never been alive in a series in Sri Lanka going into the third match, but this time they are just a win away from squaring it. They have batted well in patches, Tamim Iqbal's century and the excellent finish from Nasir Hossain being the bright spots. But this is a big game where the three senior batsmen - Mohammad Ashraful, Mushfiqur Rahim and more..

Three Indian locomotives arrive for Northern Railway Project

Mar 28 (Island) Three new Locomotives, built in India’s Diesel Locomotive Works, Varanasi have arrived at the Colombo Port to speed up the prestigious Northern Rail Project. These Locomotives are being supplied to the Sri Lanka Railway as part of the ongoing Northern Railway reconstruction projects. Ircon General Manager, S L Gupta said that three more Locomotives would also be supplied to the Sri Lanka Railway under the Northern Railway Projects shortly. more..

Ten day in-house training to interns on second language

Mar 28 (DN) According to the Public Administration Circular 07/2007 from April 2 all intern doctors will receive a 10 day in-house training on the second language. This is a significant step forward in connection with national reconciliation and offering a better service to patients, Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena and National Languages and Social Integration Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara said addressing a special joint press briefing more..

Issuing bills at state hospitals a harebrained project – doctors

Mar 28 (Island) The Govt Medical Officers’ Forum (GMOF) yesterday dismissed as ill-advised the Health Ministry’s decision to issue all inpatients, at state hospitals, with bills mentioning the cost of treatment incurred by the state. Patients are not required to pay for treatment and this move is aimed at raising public awareness of the cost of public health care, according to the Health Ministry. As the costs of heart surgery, haemodialysis and the cesarean operation were higher at more..

'A mechanism to monitor Sri Lanka`s human rights is needed'

Mar 28 (TOI) Alan Keenan is the Sri Lanka director of the International Crisis Group (ICG) whose recent report outlines a consolidation of power in Colombo, calling for an international response to an apparently authoritarian turn. Speaking with Sameer Arshad, Keenan discussed a growing lack of accountability, pressure on the judiciary and minority groups — and the steps he thinks the international community must take. Q: According to the ICG, how is Sri Lanka`s consolidation of power impacting more..

CID to probe Rs. 39 m fraud at Deyata Kirula

Mar 28 (FT) The CID had begun an investigation against the CEO at the secretarial office of the Deyata Kirula Exhibition 2013 for allegedly cheating and misappropriating an amount of Rs. 39 million, contravening proper tender procedure. Secretary to the Ministry of Telecommunication and Information Technology H.M. Gunasekara had lodged a complaint with the CID regarding this alleged misappropriation valued at Rs. 39 million on 21 February 2013. more..

CEB promises uninterrupted power supply to Kotte

Mar 28 (Island) Steps had been taken provide continuous power supply to residents of Nawala, Rajagiriya, Battaramulla and Kotte following a transformer failure on Monday evening at CEB’s Sri Jayewardenepura Grid Substation. CEB General Manager Nihal Wickramasuriya said that all possible steps had been taken to provide an uninterrupted electricity to the affected areas. He said that within 24 hours they would be in a position to identity areas prone to power outages and more..

RINL eyes tie-up with Sri Lankan firm for manufacturing

Mar 28 (PTI) Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Ltd (RINL), the corporate entity of Vizag Steel, is looking for a Sri Lankan company to enter into a tie-up for manufacturing steel products there, a senior official of the state-owned steel maker has said. RINL Director (Commercial) TK Chand said the company has already called for expression of interest from Sri Lankan steel rod and bar manufacturers for the tie-up and the process of selection of the partner may come to a final stage by May. more..

'40% of Sri Lanka's income spent on oil imports'

Mar 28 (CT) "More than 40% of our country's gross income is being spent on fuel import, transportation and production of thermal power. Crude oil which is our primary source of generating power is rising in cost and is facing dramatic increase in the cost of energy during the past few years," said Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa said recently. He also said, "In Sri Lanka there is much potential for renewable energy sources more..

Gem Centre in Mattala

Mar 28 (DN) The National Gem and Jewellery Authority (NGJA) has taken measures to set up a gem centre in Mattala, targetting the increasing number of tourist arrivals at the Mattala Airport, NGJA CEO Prasad Galhena said. “There are a large number of traditional gem and jewellery craftsmen and entrepreneurs in the Southern Province. The Authority plans to launch a development programme targeting these craftsmen and creating a good market for their products,” more..

Mobitel apologizes over BBS ringback tone

Mar 28 (CG) Mobitel has apologized for any emotional distress caused as a result of its recent decision to support a ringback tone of the Bodu Bala Sena. While not mentioning the name of the Buddhist organization in the statement, Mobitel said in a web posting that making the ringback tone available does not mean that Mobitel supports the views on the content or the content owner. “It is with great concern that Mobitel humbly apologizes for causing any emotional distress towards more..

Sri Lankan mass grave dates back 25 years

Mar 28 (AP) A judge announced Wednesday that more than 150 human skulls and bones recovered from a mass grave were buried there about 25 years ago, strengthening suspicion that they belonged to suspected Marxist rebels killed at the time. Magistrate Chathurika de Silva told a court in Matale that tests show the skeletal remains found inside the premises of a govt hospital dated to between 1987 and 1990. more..

JVP accuses govt. of inviting casino giant

Mar 28 (Island) The JVP yesterday accused the govt of having invited an international casino giant to start business in Sri Lanka on a prime block of land in Colombo. JVP MP Sunil Handunneththi said that the casino giant would visit Sri Lanka next week to inspect his new business site. The govt had agreed to hand over the plot of land currently used as a car park on D. R. Wijewardene Mawatha, opposite the Lake House and it was very close to the Sambuddhaloka Viharaya, the JVP MP said, more..

Lankan cinema artistes to demand ban on south Indian movies

Mar 28 (Island) Sri Lankan film artistes warned that they would demand a ban on the import of South Indian movies if their South Indian counterparts joined pro-LTTE anti-Sri Lankan protests. Veteran movie director Udayakantha Waranasuriya said that South Indian film stars had attended several anti-Sri Lankan hunger strikes albeit without much success. "What if we demand the banning of South Indian films to Sri Lanka?" he said. Actor Ravindra Randeniya told The Island that more..

Rs 40 b slash in CEB expenses: Power hike reduced

Mar 28 (DN) Public Utilities Commission (PUCSL) chairman Dr. Jayatissa de Costa said it was able to slash Rs 40 billion in expenses from the CEB's cost estimates for 2013, which amount, if not slashed, would have gravely impacted on consumers and govt electricity subsidies. “As a result of the Commission’s regulatory interventions, the per unit cost of electricity has been reduced by Rs. 3 and 64 cents,” more..

Editorial: Enough of ‘establishment blues’!

Mar 28 (DM) We are no fans of Vijay. Especially with his sympathy towards LTTE that slaughtered thousands of civilians; and not forgetting the political leaders of both Sri Lanka and India. If you are wondering who Vijay is, he is a South Indian actor, who is considered Shahruk Khan in Kollywood. He has a substantial fan base amongst the Tamil speaking communities in Sri Lanka as well. One must be wondering why this sudden interest in Vijay, who the majority of Sinhala speaking more..

Will Sri Lanka join the Global Movement of Moderates?

Mar 28 (DM) The time had come for fresh thinking that could transcend the barriers of politics and economics, and cross the frontiers of religion and culture. The world was yearning for an idea to hold on to and an idea to identify with, in an attempt to face the new waves and forms of excesses that had permeated most sectors of human existence: the manifestations are apparent in global issues ranging from climate change, global human trafficking, illicit flow of funds, over-leverage more..

'International Schools must dance to govt.’s tune'

Mar 28 (DM) Minister Bandula Gunawardena claims that students’ confidence in the education system and the Examinations Department has not deteriorated despite the numerous blunders. He further maintains that the govt would have the final say when it comes to the regulation of international schools. Q: How does the govt plan on implementing its proposed programme for educating juvenile delinquents, while more..

Alleged ethanol importer’s address just bare land

Mar 28 (ST) The mystery behind the illegal import of a stock of ethanol deepened after Customs found the address of the importer was only a bare land. These findings were placed before Colombo Additional Magistrate Sadun Vithana on Wednesday. Importer, Ranga Dharshana Samarakkody of Axis Industries of Padukka, claimed that the two containers imported were for the manufacture of Turpentine. more..

Land jam in Monaragala

Mar 28 (SL) In gross violation of rules and regulations, Divisional Secretary Buttala G.U.K. Algewattage, has leased 500 acres of forest land to Nelna Agri Development for a mango plantation. While the culprit is silent over the whole sordid episode, the other official responsible for the fraud, the Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Monaragala R.P.M. Weerasinghe, said he was totally unaware that mango plants have more..

Students, cadre continue protests

Mar 28 (Hindu) Traffic was hit for nearly an hour on the Tondiarpet-Tiruvottiyur Main Road in north Chennai on Wednesday, after more than 200 cadres of the VCK blocked the stretch, as part of an anti-Sri Lanka protest. Police said around 10 a.m., a large number of VCK cadres led by the party’s north Chennai president, C. Sounder, blocked the busy stretch in front of the Govt Peripheral Hospital in Tondiarpet and raised more..

Overwhelming public support for large pictorial warnings

Mar 28 (Island) An opinion survey conducted in March 2013 by Alcohol and Drug Information Centre (ADIC) shows that 95.8% of respondents strongly support the implementation of pictorial health warnings (PHWs) in Sri Lanka. This extraordinary level of support is irrespective of whether they are adults or youth, men or women or even smokers or nonsmokers. Over 96% of them are of the view that warnings should cover more..

Turning back the boats helps stem the Sri Lankan tide

Mar 28 (TA) Co-operation between Sri Lanka and Australia - and turning back asylum boats - is helping to beat people-smugglers, says Sri Lanka's high commissioner Thisara Samarasinghe. As the Sri Lankan navy yesterday intercepted the first asylum boat to be picked up there for more than a month, the former naval chief said authorities had stopped more than 3000 asylum-seekers leaving on more than 60 boats last year. more..

Stop joking and resolve differences with India - UNP

Mar 28 (Island) Minister Mervyn Silva’s offer to go to Tamil Nadu and stop attacks on Sri Lankans there was the biggest joke and not worth considering, the UNP said. UNP MP Gayantha Karunathillake, said that Sri Lanka was being humiliated in other counties including in Tamil Nadu as well as at the UN due to the Rajapaksa regime’s inability to comprehend global politics and its ignorance of diplomacy. A high level govt delegation more..

Deyata Kirula develops the Muhudu Maha Vihara in Pottuwil

Mar 28 (IL) President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared open the newly carpeted and developed access road to the Muhudu Maha Vihara in Pottuwil, Ampara district Sunday morning while he was in the Eastern Province to attend the Deyata Kirula 2013. The Muhudu Maha Vihara is over 2000 years old ancient Buddhist shrine located by beautiful landscape of sea side in an area of archaeological interest. It is the exact location more..

SF alleges fresh bid to deprive DP of political recognition

Mar 28 (Island) Former Army Chief, General Sarath Fonseka’s Democratic Party alleges that a shameful attempt is being made to deprive it of legal recognition. A senior spokesperson for the DP said that Gen. Fonseka’s outfit was seriously concerned about certain interested persons making representations to Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya against endorsing the former presidential more..

Geneva vote: External Affairs Ministry defends outcome, refers to other resolutions

Mar 28 (Island) The External Affairs Ministry said that an analysis of resolutions and voting results at the recently concluded UNHRC sessions in Geneva was necessary in the wake of allegations that the passage of US resolution titled ‘Promoting Reconciliation and Accountability in Sri Lanka’ was due to failure of the country’s foreign policy. 25 countries voted for the resolution, whereas 13 opposed, 8 abstained 1 absent. more..

Editorial: The danger of JJ's petulance

Mar 28 (CT) What is happening in Tamil Nadu has nothing to do with sports and everything to do with the anti-Sri Lanka rabidity cranked up by Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa Jeyaram, and of course political expediency. But it is sports; specifically the Indian Premier League (IPL) that is being held to ransom by her action and it is Indo-Sri Lanka relations that may end up having to pay the price. In a move that is seen as a dangerous mucking up of sports and politics, the onetime thespian more..

Colombo Uni VC: A reply to Prof. Hoole

Mar 28 (CT) Prof. R S Hoole has in a letter published on March 20, responded to a piece written by me. Let me clarify certain issues he has raised. I have checked my facts. Dr. Hirimburegama who has applied for the Vice Chancellor’s post in the Uni of Colombo is a Lecturer Grade II of this university. I did not make the derogatory remarks that Prof. Hoole suggests I made in reference to Dr. Hirimburegama. I raised the issue whether he and the other Senior Lecturer Grade II more..

A growing Wahhabi presence in Eastern province – Muslim leaders

Mar 28 (CT) “Ambassador hosted prominent Muslim leaders for a roundtable discussion on Muslim issues to mark the holy month of Ramadan. Participants noted the absence of Al-Qaida and other radical Islamist terror groups but expressed concern about a growing Wahhabi presence, and the need to address social problems within the Muslim community before radical ideas begin to resonate with the youth.” the US more..

Govt must keep its promises to India, Japan, the UN and to US

Mar 28 (CT) The bitterness of the pill that the govt was forced to swallow once again at the UNHRC in Geneva was assuaged somewhat by the support that Sri Lanka received from significant parts of the world. Despite eloquent speeches by the Sri Lankan representatives and supportive countries such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka lost the vote by an increased margin of 25 to 13 compared to the previous year. But Japan broke ranks with its fraternal Western allies to abstain from the vote. more..

Sinister campaign to discourage Muslims visiting ‘Deyata Kirula 2013’

Mar 28 (Island) IGP N.K. Illangakoon said that an attempt was being made to discourage Muslims from visiting ‘Deyata Kirula 2013’ in Ampara. The IGP was responding to alleged threats directed at Muslims and added that security had been tightened. Therefore, he asked every Muslim living in the area not to doubt and be scared of the rumour about lack of security there. He alleged that some sections in the area had unnecessarily frightened and threatened them by distributing leaflets. more..