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Jaffna Muslims powwow with Hakeem

Mar 29 (CT) Leader of the SLMC and Minister of Justice, Rauff Hakeem, has expressed concern over the delay in resettling the internally displaced Muslims in Jaffna. Minister Hakeem convened a special meeting with representatives of the Jaffna Muslim community at his residence in Colombo on Monday. The representatives of the Jaffna Muslims complained to the Minister that the infrastructure facilities in the Muslim areas in Jaffna need to be uplifted, as a matter of priority. more..

Chittagong–Colombo feeder service to be resumed

Mar 29 (Island) Amidst an increase in bilateral investments, Bangladesh plans to resume direct feeder services between Chittagong and Colombo, its High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Sufiur Rahman said.   "We have accorded priority to direct maritime connectivity and the advantages of coastal shipping. With a regular shipping service many non-traditional items could be traded. Agreement has also been reached on developing a bilateral trade framework," Rahman told a reception, more..

Envoy links Sinhalese to eastern states, TN groups fume

Mar 29 (TI) A claim by the Sri Lankan envoy that the Sinhalese are descendants of Odias and Bengalis and therefore deserve Indian support has angered Tamil Nadu groups who have accused him of trying to divide Indians and sought his expulsion. “Today, India seems to be concerned only about the 12 per cent Tamil population in Sri Lanka who share ethnic links with Tamil Nadu. But Sinhalese too have similar but ancient links more..

Deyata Kirula Secretariat office Chief Executive Officer transfered

Mar 29 (DN) Deyata Kirula Secretariat office CEO, who is also the Telecommunication and Information Technology Ministry Additional Secretary, has been transferred to Public Administration and Home Affairs Ministry with immediate effect pending investigations into improper tender and financial procedures concerning Deyata Kirula funds. Investigations carried out into alleged financial and tender procedures reflected that they have been carried out without transparency or integrity. more..

'Waste management: Most Lankans not aware of their responsibility'

Mar 29 (DN) Most Sri Lankans are not aware about their responsibility with regard to waste management, Mass Media and Information Ministry Secretary Dr Charitha Herath said. Delivering the keynote address at the inauguration and technical sessions of the International Conference on Waste Management Towards Waste Free Sri Lanka in Colombo on March 22, he said haphazard municipal waste collection and disposal is a major environmental issue in Sri Lanka. more..

Century-old Museum death trap injures 40 including 29 children

Mar 29 (Island) 29 school children on an educational excursion were among the 40 persons injured when a more than a century old stairway at the National Museum collapsed yesterday. Others who sustained injuries were four mothers and five teachers from the Giriyagama Vidyalaya in Galagedara, Kandy, Ambagasdowa Sumanjothi Vidyalaya in Welimada and Dambarella Vidyalaya in Hambantota. Of the 29 children, more..

Highest number of cataract patients in Mullaitivu District

Mar 29 (Island) Patients who have cataract in one eye  have exceeded 300,000 and those who have cataract in both eyes would be reaching 150,000 Dr Amaratunga, eye specialist attached to the Vijaya Kumaratunga Memorial Hospital, Seeduwa said. At the conclusion of an eye clinic, he said that cataract was reaching alarming proportions  and the sight of all those who were afflicted could be restored, but, most of them don’t come to hospital for treatment due to ignorance. more..

Petition against pictorial warning put off

Mar 29 (Island) A Supreme Court Bench comprising Justices Saleem Marzook, Eva Wanesundera and Sathya Hettige yesterday decided that it was apt that the petition, filed by tobacco companies against the Ministry of Health, should be taken up by the original Bench, headed by the CJ, which took up the case on a previous occasion. Tobacco companies filed the petition against the Health Ministry’s directive that pictorial warnings be displayed on 80% of the front and the back of all cigarette packets. more..

Southern Expressway incurs Rs 5.5 B loss

Mar 29 (CT) A leading strategist in transport and logistics management revealed that the much-celebrated Southern Expressway is currently incurring a whopping Rs 5.5 billion loss annually, raising concerns over the cost-effectiveness of such hyped highways. The annual revenue collected from vehicles using the Expressway is approximately Rs 1 billion, whereas the maintenance and debt service cost is around Rs 6.5 billion," said more..

Against 'heinous human rights violations'

Mar 29 (CT) The Frontline Socialist Party (FSP), referring to the skeletal remains found at the backyard of the Matale Hospital, said they would take legal action against the 'heinous human rights violations' committed against youths involved in the insurgencies of the '80s and '90s. They alleged that the torture and killings, which appears to have involved the sawing of limbs and electrocution of persons, had taken place in a room in Wijaya Vidyalaya, adjacent to the site where more..

Internet slows after 'biggest attack in history'

Mar 24 (BBC) The internet around the world has been slowed down in what security experts are describing as the biggest cyber-attack of its kind in history. A row between a spam-fighting group and hosting firm has sparked retaliation attacks affecting the wider internet. It is having an impact on popular services like Netflix - and experts worry it could escalate to affect banking and email systems. Five national cyber-police-forces are investigating the attacks. Spamhaus, a group based in both more..

Pepiliyana Fashion Bug attacked

Mar 29 (CG) A hate campaign against Muslims and Muslim owned establishments continued today with a mob attacking a Fashion Bug warehouse at Pepiliyana. The police said that at least 20 men led by some monks had initially carried out the attack damaging the building and property including a vehicle. The group then grew into a large mob and the police were unable to control them as the attack continued for several hours with more..

Tracing the Mervyn connection

Mar 29 (CT) The CID yesterday informed the Mahara Magistrate's Court that the firearm which was used to assassinate UPFA Kelaniya Pradeshiya Sabha member, Hasitha Kelum Madawala, had been given to the assassin by the son of Sarath Kumara Edirisinghe, the former Parliamentary Secretary to Minister Mervyn Silva. The suspect Don Imesh Ishan Edirisinghe is currently in hiding, the Court was told. The CID requested the Magistrate to obtain a special report on the number plate of more..

Brave cop saves Russian tourist from drowning at sea

Mar 24 (E24|7) People on Hikkaduwa beach on the southern coast were shocked to see a foreigner dragging a woman into the sea at around 10.30am in the morning on Sunday and trying to choke her in the water. Beach boys rushed into the sea and saved the woman who ran down the beach screaming. The man was still in the sea shouting in an unknown language. Many people, including security guards, tourists and local residents, tried to bring him back to the shore. more..

'Defence Ministry funding attacks on religious minorities'

Mar 29 (Island) The Defence Ministry was funding extremist groups responsible for harassing and attacking religious minorities, the UNP charged yesterday. Sri Lanka was going through a very tragic phase. Instead of uniting all communities with the end of a near thirty year old war, the Defence Ministry had provided Sinhala extremists with the required assistance including finances to create confusion and mayhem in the country, more..

Health sector gets US$ 200mn World Bank boost

Mar 24 (FT) The World Bank approved on Wednesday a concessionary loan of S$ 200 million to Sri Lanka for the Second Health Sector Development Project (SHSDP) to help the Govt of Sri Lanka upgrade the standards of performance of the public health system and enable it to better respond to the challenges of a middle income country. The project is expected to benefit the whole population of 21 million people of the country, especially the poorer and more more..

Rs. 433 mn in compensation for acquired properties

Mar 29 (Island) Measures have been taken to pay Rs. 433 million as compensation to the owners of the properties acquired for the Southern Expressway extension, from Galle to Matara, according to the Matara District Divisional Secretariat. The construction work on the Galle-Matara segment of the expressway, a distance of 35 km., will be completed by next August. There are plans to extend the Southern Expressway up to Hambantota, connecting the Mattala International Airport. more..

'SLC won't stop players from joining IPL'

Mar 29 (PTI) Sri Lanka Cricket secretary, Nishantha Ranatunga, on Thursday said it will not stop its players from participating in the Indian Premier League after getting assurances from the BCCI about their safety but made it clear that the SLC will not accept political interference. "I don't think Lankan players should boycott the IPL just because of political party and views. The game should be kept away from it. That is the SLC policy. more..

Parties in a fight for Eelam spotlight

Mar 29 (TOI) Who gets to be called the saviour of world Tamils? It is this fight that has caught the fancy of political parties in Tamil Nadu. Until the year 2009, Eelam, coined to mean a separate Tamil land in Sri Lanka, was a word that the AIADMK had shunned from its vocabulary. Today, most parties in the state find it politically fashionable to flaunt their 'Eelam' sympathies. If the DMK used the watered down anti-Lanka resolution in the UNHRC to pull out of the UPA and score brownie points more..

International Bar says Lanka facing crisis

Mar 29 (CG) The removal from office in Sri Lanka of Chief Justice Bandaranayake was unlawful, is undermining public confidence in the rule of law, and threatening to eviscerate the country’s judiciary as an independent guarantor of constitutional rights states the Executive Summary of an International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) report released today. Issued ahead of the full report, the Executive Summary of A Crisis of Legitimacy: The Impeachment of CJ more..

'TN crisis bolsters anti-devolution project'

Mar 29 (Island) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said that the ongoing crisis in the Southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, over accountability issues here, should discourage those pushing for devolution of power under the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. A hostile provincial administration in the Northern or the Eastern Province in Sri Lanka could be inimical to the post-war national reconciliation process, more..

Editorial : Cling to the values of the Old Rugged Cross

Mar 29 (DM) Today the world commemorates Good Friday, the day Jesus Christ was brutally killed on a Cross and inspired a movement that has lasted two thousand years and continues to touch the lives of more than two billion people directly and the whole of humanity in one way or another. We need to ask how one person could have so much impact on the world and what we could learn from Him for today's modern world, concerning living, concerning leadership and concerning the inspiration more..

Shock treatment for poor tariff revision for electricity

Mar 29 (DM) With a revision for electricity charges in the offing, what does the public feel about the proposed tariff hike? Having already implemented extensive measures to save electricity consumption, are there any more steps that can be taken to minimise electricity consumption or do the masses feel it's time to revert to the good old days of the kerosene lamp and moonlight? The proposed electricity tariff hike submitted to the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka more..

'Sri Lanka's foreign policy lacks architecture'

Mar 29 (DM) Academic and former Diplomat Dayan Jayatilleke spoke to the Daily Mirror on the consequences of the UNHRC resolution against Sri Lanka, the importance of holding the Northern Provincial Council elections in a free and fair manner and Sri Lanka's lack of foreign policy architecture. Q: With regards to the UNHRC sessions, you have stated something along the lines of; we have made enemies of our friends more..

Revealed: How Holcim paid for Sri Lanka shares in Dubai

Mar 29 (SL) One of the larger corporate takeover transactions in Sri Lanka was more remarkable for the way in which the foreign company paid significant sums out of Sri Lanka, in contravention of the exchange control rules at the time. The full impunity and extent with which Holcim ignored Sri Lanka's laws can today be revealed. A source close to the transaction said, The scale of impunity with which this Swiss company from more..

Jumbos not bothered about Mattala

Mar 29 (ST) The elephants are a-roaming, going about their routine of foraging and resting, with nary a worry about the mechanical winged giants of the air landing and taking off from Mattala. Concerns that the flights coming into the newly-opened Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport at Hambantota would disrupt the lives of the elephants in the area have been effectively laid to rest, the Sunday Times understands. more..

Many outfits oppose power tariff revision

Mar 29 (Island) More than 250 organizations yesterday protested against the govt's decision to hike electricity tariffs in the latter part of April. The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) would not be in a position to raise electricity tariffs if civic organisations, concerned parties or consumers opposed them, a senior PUCSL official said. However, he said that still they had time, till April 4, to compare the more..

Sri Lankan Muslims fear reprisals as monks vent anger

Mar 29 (Xinhua) Muslims in Sri Lanka have been living in fear over the past couple of months as comments and statements made by Buddhist monks at public rallies have led to hate campaigns, mostly using social media. The concerns saw an online campaign being launched this week seeking the intervention of President Mahinda Rajapaksa to protect the liberties of Sri Lanka's minorities and to defend their more..

'Casino has become economic strategy of the govt'

Mar 29 (LT) There is no dearth for kings in this country. The latest to join the 'royalty' is Casino King who is getting ready to build a 'casino palace' in valuable lands in Colombo says JVP MP Sunil Handunneththi. He said, "Rajapaksa regime had as its basis themes such as Mahinda Chinthanaya, 'Mathata Thitha (halt to intoxicants) and an ethical society. However, now the number one casino king of the world is to build a more..

Sri Lanka survives titans' cyberspace feud intact

Mar 29 (DM) The Sri Lanka Computer Emergency Readiness Team|Coordination Center (SLCERT|CC) assured Sri Lanka has not been impacted by what has been reported as the 'biggest cyber attack of its kind in history' that was activated on Wednesday. SLCERT|CC Information Security Engineer Roshan Chandraguptha said although they have not yet been able to verify the details of the attack, more..

Jayantha Dharmadasa nominated to be next SLC president

Mar 29 (DM) Jayantha Dharmadasa had been nominated to head Sri Lanka Cricket by its Executive committee on Thursday night. Jayantha, the elder brother of former president Upali Dharmadasa, was once the former chairman of Sri Lanka Cricket Interim Committee. All three nominations for the post of presidency had been rejected on technical grounds. As a result, the executive committee had the opportunity more..

Indian Minister wants CHOGM out of Lanka

Mar 29 (CG) Close on the heels of Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa urging urging India to stay away from the Commonwealth Heads of Govt Meeting (CHOGM) meet to be held in Colombo later this year, senior Congress leader and Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan today said the meeting should be shifted out of the island nation. Stating that the CHOGM and Leaders' Retreat from 15 to 17 November should not be held in Colombo, more..

Police probe attack on Muslim establishment

Mar 29 (Xinhua) The police on Friday said they were investigating an attack on a fashion store warehouse by a mob including several monks. Security was strengthened outside the Muslim owned Fashion Bug warehouse at Pepiliyana, just outside Colombo. The police said that at least 20 men led by some monks had initially carried out the attack on Thursday night damaging the building and property including a vehicle. more..

Editorial : An opportunity to rethink our lives

Mar 29 (CT) Good Friday, which is a day of great significance to Christians all over the world, commemorates the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ. The symbol and source of Christian belief is the crucifixion, the image of a man writhing in utter agony on a cross, which symbolizes the love and concern that Christ had for the world. Christian churches the world over hold solemn services on Good Friday to celebrate the Passion of Christ with special prayers and devotion as acts of more..

The Wahhabi invasion of Sri Lanka

Mar 29 (CT) To many non-Muslims, the existence of an Islamic community on the island of Sri Lanka may be surprising. Sri Lanka has been known for the past three decades as the scene of an atrocious civil war. Its Buddhist Sinhala majority, with 69.1% of the national population of 21.5 million, was challenged by Tamils 7.1%, and mainly Hindu in religion, whom the secessionist LTTE aspired to represent. The LTTE were defeated militarily in 2009. But SL also counts 7.6% of its people as Muslims, more..

Martyrdom does not help Sri Lanka's Tamils

Mar 29 (Hindu) I read with much sorrow that Vikram, 30, set himself on fire and died in a hospital. He was the second such victim of the new campaign in Tamil Nadu for Eelam. The first was Mani, 41, from Cuddalore who set himself ablaze on March 4. Mani and Vikram will be remembered only when the numbers have to be counted if there is another self-immolation. But wait, where do they want this Eelam established and for whom? more..

'Northern polls will lead to Eelam'

Mar 29 (CT) The Patriotic National Front (PNF) urged the govt not to hold elections in the Northern Province, claiming it would pave the way for the creation of a new 'Eelam Movement.' Secretary of PNF, Dr. Wasantha Bandara, alleged 'imperialistic forces' are behind the drive to hold elections in the North, to achieve their aim of overturning the present govt and implementing the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. Claiming the Western nations intend to break up Sri Lanka, more..

UC member wanted for sexual abuse

Mar 29 (DM) A Maharagama Urban Council member is wanted in connection with the sexual abuse a 12-year-old girl with whose mother he had been allegedly having an illicit affair. The child's mother in her complaint to Aturugiriya police said she was away from home at the time of the incident and that her daughter was all alone in the house. Police said the suspect had gone missing after the incident they were looking out for him. Meanwhile Mirihana police were also asked to more..

My party's doors are not saloon doors-SF

Mar 29 (DM) DNA Leader Sarath Fonseka said that his party's doors were open to everyone one but they were not like saloon doors “like some parties doors are. Our party's doors will be open to anyone. If someone values our principle he or she can come in. But our party's doors are not like saloon doors -- as some say their party's doors are. If someone wants to get a job done he comes in and when the job is done he goes out of that more..

Salley granted anticipatory bail

Mar 29 (CT) The Colombo Chief Magistrate, Rashmi Singuppulie, yesterday ordered anticipatory bail for the former Deputy Mayor of Colombo, Azath Salley, in the event the police take him into custody. She made the order after hearing submissions from the police, as well as from the Counsel for Salley, PC Anil Silva. When the case was taken up for consideration, ASP Dharmadasa Pathirana, appeared for the OIC of the CCD and the OIC of the Cinnamon Gardens Police. more..