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Development, a decisive factor in CPC election

Sep 13 (SO) The Central Province which is the centre of attraction of Sri Lanka in terms of religious, historical, cultural and natural beauty is now hotting up with the election campaign. The cool, soothing climate that prevails in the region is hotting up, may be due to the effect of the election campaign or else due to a change of weather pattern, but only the people there can feel the difference not the visitors to the province. more..

TNA manifesto: For power sharing or separation?

Sep 13 (DBS) The TNA has launched its Manifesto for the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) Elections. I am reminded of a former PM commenting on election Manifestoes as publications facilitating electoral victory and nothing more! If the TNA was of the same frame of mind and mood, it must be happy with their document, because it addresses some vote catching rhetoric, although beyond the capacity of the NPC to deliver. Throughout I have been a supporter of devolution. more..

Plot exposed!

Sep 13 (CT) Capitalizing on the recent scares about imported milk powder being unfit for consumption, a small local company owned by a famous supermarket chain, is allegedly attempting to push itself forward by producing false advertisements, which cast doubts upon its competitors while misleading the public about the safety of Fonterra, Maliban and Nestle brands. The particular dairy company, which contributes a mere 8% to Sri Lanka's local dairy production, has attempted more..

Athletes pay to train at Diyagama

Sep 13 (Island) In a surprise move, the authorities at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Diyagama have started charging an entry fee from all athletes including top level national athletes who have brought honour to the country at international level. The stadium authorities are charging an entry fee of rupees 50 from all athletes. A source close to top athletes said that even the disabled athletes who come for daily training more..

Mavittapurm, Keeramalai and some questions raised by place-names folk lore

Sep 13 (CT) In an interesting recent internet article published in, Ms. Dushyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai has repeated one version of an old anecdotal explanation of the place-name “Mavittapuram”. This story is somewhat in the same tradition as the story given to “explain” the place-name “Yalpanam” in terms of a blind lute player; the latter story does not find favour with historians as well as older authorities like Fr. Rasanayagam. The story regarding ‘Mavittapuram’ claims more..

The Central Bank releases ‘An Introduction to Principles of Economics – Part 1’

Sep 13 (Island) The Central Bank released its latest educational publication titled "An Introduction to Principles of Economics – Part 1" authored by C P A Karunatilake, Director, Centre for Banking Studies, the training arm of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. He has completed 27 years of service in the Central Bank during which he worked in many departments. Prior to joining the Bank he served as an Assistant Lecturer in Economics in the Department of Economics of the University of Colombo, more..

Harsha charges Central Bank is negligent

Sep 13 (FT) The collapse of financial institutions every other year is a damning indictment on the banking regulator, the UNP charged, slamming the Central Bank for misleading innocent depositors after another registered finance company was declared to be in trouble recently. Some 6,000 depositors have been left high and dry after it was found that Central Investments and Finance PLC (CIFL) was in deep financial trouble. more..

Editorial: Frogs for sale

Sep 13 (Island) Govt politicians claim that the UPFA candidates in the PC polls fray are fighting among themselves because they are without any challenge from the Opposition. But, former JVP MP Samantha Vidyaratne has asked, why the govt should take the trouble of rigging polls and unleashing violence when it is capable of buying councillors after the polls. The UPFA will go down in history as the party that engineered the most number of defections from the Opposition—perhaps in the world. more..

How will India facilitate a credible and independent investigation in Sri Lanka

Sep 13 (GV) While domestic politics took centre stage in Delhi this past March with the DMK pulling out of the ruling coalition, far away from the mêlée, at the UNHRC's 22nd session in Geneva the Indian representative made some very interesting remarks which gave us an insight into what the Govt of India thought of the human rights and reconciliation process in Sri Lanka. Not known for radically scrutinising statements on the international stage, India quietly registered its dismay at more..

Sunila Abeysekera 1952-2013

The post-war wars

Sep 13 (DBS) If the LTTE wanted what the TNA is asking for, the Eelam War would have ended long before 2009, in a negotiated solution. V Pirapaharan did not want federalism or even confederation. He wanted Tiger Eelam, a state wholly owned by and totally subservient to him. His maximum programme was his only programme. Had he wanted anything less than Eelam, he would have accepted either the Oslo Declaration (federalism in a single country, supported by the SLFP and the UNP) or the more..

Fraud Bureau files 44 cases against CIFL

Sep 13 (FT) Filing 44 Court cases against the Central Investments & Finance Ltd. (CIFL), the Colombo Fraud Investigations Bureau (CFIB) has reported to Court that the finance company is alleged to have cheated depositors of Rs.78 million. The Fraud Bureau has so far filed 44 cases. The exact amount of the alleged fraud could be even higher and it would depend on any new complaints received by the Police. The cases have been filed before the Colombo Fort Magistrate’s Court more..

Nimali from Ambalantota wins UK YBI Start up Entrepreneur of the Year 2013

Sep 13 (FT) Nimali Gunawardana from Ambalantota was crowned last night as the UK’s Youth Business International (YBI) Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 at an awards ceremony in London. The award is endorsed by UK’s Prince of Wales and prior to receiving her award, she and other award winners had an audience with the Prince Charles. The awards recognise the hard work and determination more..

UNP says NSB’s costly $ 500 m borrowing to service debt, finance CHOGM

Sep 13 (FT) Opposition Lawmaker Harsha De Silva claimed yesterday the $ 500 million loan being taken by the NSB was on behalf of the Government at an exorbitant and unheard-of interest rate, to service debt or finance the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in November. He said that it was the much-maligned UNP that had saved National Savings Bank by exposing details of a highly dubious share purchase transaction involving The Finance Company (TFC). more..

Colombo U'grads inconvenienced by lack of facilities

Sep 13 (CT) Undergraduates from the University of Colombo will be presenting a list of demands to the university authorities soon, claiming they lack many basic facilities including proper hostels as well as scholarships to pursue their studies. Members of the Colombo University Students' Union, claimed many of the students are facing difficulties due to the lack of even the basic facilities. They added the constant presence of the military in the campus, too, is a problem. more..

Conspiracy behind cricket awards controversy?

Sep 13 (DM) The insulting comic acts in the guise of satire that took potshots at Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) administration and its officials, all time Sri Lankan cricket icons and even current national players at SLC’s own annual awards show has exposed a serious lapse on the part of SLC officials but more alarming evidence has surfaced to suggest that it was a well orchestrated, deliberate maneuver by none other than some of the more..

UNP, JVP errant on asset declarations

Sep 13 (FT) In a strange twist to the tale, key Opposition parties have been more delinquent in terms of submitting their asset and liablities declarations for the forthcoming provincial council elections, Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) said. As of Wednesday, only about 70% of UNP candidates and about 80% of JVP candidates have submitted their declarations although an extended deadline by the Elections Commission lapsed on 7 Sept, a TISL Spokesman said. more..

Hayleys launch mechanized rice transplanter

Sep 13 (Island) Hayleys has changed the face of agriculture and farming in Sri Lanka yet again with the launch of the Kubota mechanized rice transplanter by its Agri-Equipment division. Partnering with the "Gamidiriya" program (Community Development and Livelihood Improvement Project) of the Ministry of Economic Development, company demonstrated the unique features of the machine to farmers in the North Central and Southern Provinces. more..

Sri Lanka's path to peace

Sep 13 (TA) Gotabhaya Rajapaksa and Selvarasa Pathmanathan used to be the deadliest of enemies. Now they have the same message. I meet the two within a period of 24 hours in Colombo. Pathmanathan, or KP as he's widely known, was for several months in 2009 the supreme leader of the LTTE, for many years the world's most ruthless and bloody terrorist group. For a long time before that he was effectively No 2 to the Tigers' leader, more..

Uncovering The War

Sep 13 (IE) India's unexpected war in Sri Lanka caught me on the wrong foot by 12,000 km. I was still finishing the last month of my sabbatical year in Washington DC when the fighting broke out. And as I returned home, the media was full of coverage, often loaded, of the IPKF disaster in Sri Lanka's Jaffna peninsula. Loaded because the Bofors scandal, and many other missteps, already had Rajiv Gandhi under widespread attack. SL was therefore seen as "babalog" political stupidity, more..

Nobel laureate to address workshop here on future earth initiatives

Sep 13 (Island) Nobel Laureate in Chemistry Prof. Y.T. Lee (1986) will be visiting Sri Lanka next week to participate in a workshop on ‘Future Earth’, organised by the Coordinating Secretariat for Science Technology and Innovation (COSTI). The workshop will be held next Tuesday (17) and Wednesday (18) at the Galadari Hotel in Colombo. Prof. Lee will deliver the keynote address on "Sustainable Transformation of Human Society" during the inauguration session. more..

Questions over probe into kneeling of policemen

Sep 13 (DM) While special police investigations into the recent incident at the Kattankudy Police station have concluded and a report to IGP N.K Ilangakone was due soon, questions have been raised within the Police Department over allegations made against Senior DIG Pujith Jayasundara. SSP Ajith Rohana said statements from 42 officers have been recorded and the report would be submitted shortly for the IGP’s more..

Crackdown on illegal cordless phone users

Sep 13 (DN) The Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRCSL) has commenced a special investigation with the assistance of the Police in to a large scale cordless land phones racket in Sri Lanka, TRCSL Director General Anusha Palpita said. These land phones are used in the United States, but they are banned in Sri Lanka due to their high frequency. These phones are activated over 1800 MHz and use of land phones with such high frequency is prohibited in Sri Lanka. more..

Governors not above reproach

Sep 13 (CT) Commissioner of Elections, Mahinda Deshapriya, said it is within the rights of anyone to complain to the Human Rights Commission against the provincial governors, if they are found to be engaging in election campaigns. He said the governors of the Northern, Central and North-Western Provinces, where provincial elections will be held on 21 September, have already been notified that they should not be taking part in election campaigns. more..

'Jayalalithaa can help to resolve fishermen issue'

Sep 13 (Hindu) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has a crucial role in addressing the issue of Indian fishermen poaching in Sri Lankan waters, according to C.V. Wigneswaran, the TNA Chief Ministerial candidate contesting the Northern Provincial Council elections. Indian fishermen using big trawlers, he said, came fairly early into Sri Lankan waters, caught all the fish and left the local people high and dry. more..

Actress probed for taking elderly lawyer down the garden path

Sep 13 (DM) A Colombo Court ordered the Kollupitiya police to conduct a comprehensive investigation regarding a complaint received against popular teledrama actress Maneesha Shyamali alleging that she had withdrawn Rs.120,000 deceitfully from a bank account belonging to an elderly lawyer who had since passed away. The actress was arrested by the police on a complaint received by the daughter of the deceased, that the suspect defrauded her father of Rs.120,000. more..

Tamil Nadu 'betrayed' after India rules out return of tiny island from Sri Lanka

Sep 13 (National) Japan and China are wrangling over the Senkaku islands in the East China Sea. The Philippines, Taiwan and China are tussling over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. Now add to the list the island of Katchatheevu, a 115-hectare speck of land with no permanent residents, lying off the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. India ceded the island to Sri Lanka in bilateral agreements signed in 1974 and 1976. But in 2008, J Jayalalithaa, Tamil Nadu's chief minister, more..

GR lashes out at TNA for demanding for troops confinement

Sep 13 (Island) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said that the army had sharply reduced its presence in the Jaffna peninsula, in accordance with the post-war development plans in the Northern Region. Whatever the TNA propagated for its advantage in the run-up to the first NPC polls on Sept. 21, the military presence on the ground was minimal now, Rajapaksa said. he was responding to TNA leader R. Sampanthan’s more..

Sri Lanka seeks pragmatic approach

Sep 13 (CG) The Sri Lankan govt today called for a pragmatic, context specific approach in addressing issues of transitional justice. Making a statement during the interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Truth, Justice, Reparation and Non-recurrence Pablo de Greiff today, the Sri Lankan delegation at the UNHRC said that Sri Lanka has consistently upheld the position that the approach of each state to reconciliation be context specific taking into account the particularities of more..

PAFFEREL complaints to the HRC

Sep 13 (DM) The PAFFEREL today requested the Human Rights Commission to send its representatives to the North as poll observers to look into the incidents where military personnel were allegedly engaged in election campaign. “We have received so many complaints from the Jaffna and Killinochchi Districts that military personnel are engaged in election campaign. So we requested the Human Rights Commission to send a group of representatives as poll observers to look into more..

TN politicians exploiting Lankan Tamils issue: C.V. Wigneswaran

Sep 13 (Hindu) Tamil Nadu politicians use the Sri Lankan Tamils’ issue for their own gains, much to the detriment of the Tamils in Sri Lanka, said Justice C.V. Wigneswaran, the chief ministerial candidate of the TNA in the upcoming NPC elections. He said: “In Tamil Nadu, our problems have been taken to be the ball to be played in the tennis court between the two or three parties. They [TN politicians] start hitting more..

Another drug withdrawn after detection of foreign matter

Sep 13 (Island) The Health Ministry ordered hospital authorities to remove phials containing the Cloxacillin vaccine after the detection of an unknown particle inside a vaccination phial at the Medirigiriya Base Hospital on Sunday. The phials belonging to imported batch No. CC2004 would be removed from hospitals immediately. "We tested the suspected phial at the National Drug Quality Assurance laboratory following a complaint received by the Medical Technology and Supplies Division of more..

Human smuggling Kingpin arrested

Sep 13 (CT) The CID of the Matara Police arrested the main kingpin behind the Australia-bound human smuggling racket. A millionaire businessman, known by his alias, Kinniya Sarath, was arrested in Kiribathgoda early morning yesterday. He was allegedly involved in the illegal business of smuggling humans out of the country, from Kinniya, Trincomalee. A senior police officer said, the businessman had contested at the elections held for for the Eastern Provincial Council more..

Govt. will take action against TNA manifesto

Sep 13 (CT) Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, said the govt will take action against the TNA election manifesto, as it contravenes the Constitution of Sri Lanka. He said: "Some sections (of the manifesto) are certainly in violation, and the govt is disappointed with it and will take action. There are other parties as well who are contemplating legal action,". He said the manifesto contains some clauses that relate to more..

Take the stigma away from suicide

Sep 13 (DM) Sri Lanka Sumithrayo, one of the volunteer movements doing immense service to the people without seeking self-glory or personal gain, is appealing to the people and the media to change their attitude towards suicide and the families of the victims. At a meeting held last Monday to mark World Suicide Prevention Day, the SLS whose 100 volunteers have deep care and compassion for hundreds of people who seek counselling from them, focused on the theme of stigma. more..

A word of warning from pensioners

Sep 13 (DM) President Mahinda Rajapaksa has continued to show his highly sensitive concerns towards the plight of the govt pensioners. This is quite clear from the following statements that he has made over the years (the list is not exhaustive): 1. “Mahinda Chintana — Towards a New Sri Lanka” (page 48); “Respected Senior Citizens’ Programme” Pensions to be increased with the public servants’ salary increases Anomalies in the present pension payments to be rectified and more..

UNP fears religious tensions

Sep 13 (CG) The UNP today condemned violence against places of religious worship saying it is deeply wounding the sentiments of entire communities of people in Sri Lanka. UNP MP Karu Jayasuriya said that the recent escalation of religious tensions in the country has given rise to a deep sense of foreboding and a profound sadness for him, and others in the UNP. He said that for too long, Sri Lanka had been a society divided more..

LIOC inaugurates petrol shed in Nanuvil

Sep 13 (DN) Lanka IOC PLC, with the objective of increasing its footprint in the Jaffna peninsula opened their second petrol shed recently in Nanuvil in the Jaffna District. It was inaugurated by Minister Douglas Devananda, in the presence of S.K. Menon, Consul (Com) from the Indian Consulate, Subodh Dakwale, Managing Director of Lanka IOC, company representatives, V. Sivarasa, Sivarasa the dealer, and more..

Wildlife Minister given 'bad advice'

Sep 13 (CT) Senior advisers to the Minister of Wildlife Resources Conservation, are being blamed for giving the minister bad advice that goes against the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance (FFPO). Members of many environmental organizations said, the statements made by the Minister of Wildlife Resources Conservation, Vijith Vijayamuni Soysa, regarding licensing illegal elephants, permitting the sale of more..

Chandimal to lead against NZ A

Sep 13 (CI) Dinesh Chandimal will captain the Sri Lanka A side against New Zealand A in the first unofficial Test, which begins on September 17, with Dimuth Karunaratne to serve as his deputy. Neither Chandimal nor Karunaratne were in the preliminary squad for the A tour, but with Sri Lanka's October tour of Zimbabwe since having been called off, both players will now have some match practice in what shapes to be a more..