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Sangakkara only player to choose home franchise over IPL team

Sep 2 (SL) Kumar Sangakkara is the only international cricketer to choose to play for his home franchise over his IPL team in the Champions league T20 tournament to be held in India from September 17 to October 6. As widely expected, a number of international cricketers have chosen their IPL franchises over their home teams for the upcoming Champions League Twenty20. The organisers of the CLT20 on Friday more..

Reawakening of Maavittapuram in Valigaamam North of Jaffna

Sep 2 (DBS) The Sangam period poetess said “Koyil Illa Ooril Kudiyirukka Vendaam” (Don’t live in a place, where there is no temple). Maavittapuram is a holy village, and famous Kanthaswamy temple is situated in 30 acre red soil in Vali North Pradesha Sabha of Jaffna District. “Maavittapuram” in Tamil means “Ma” (Horse), “Vitta” (Removed), “Puram” (Holy City). The Chola Princess Maaruthapuraveegavalli, daughter of Thissai Ukkirasinga Cholan, King of Chola regime in more..

Sri Lanka’s disappeared, visit of Navi Pillay and another Commission of Inquiry

Sep 2 (GV) On 30th August – International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances – hundreds of families of disappeared persons in Sri Lanka, most of them Tamils and from the war affected North and East, will travel to Colombo to meet with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navatheenam Pillay, at the tail end of the High Commissioner’s visit to Sri Lanka. Several hundred demonstrated in the Northern city of Jaffna and Eastern city of Trincomalee during more..

Pillay says Sri Lanka turning authoritarian

Sri Lanka looking for other options to overcome cricket drought

Sep 2 (ST) With Sri Lanka’s tour of Zimbabwe postponed indefinitely on the request of the hosts, Sri Lanka Cricket is looking at other options so that the national cricket team will not be idling till the end of the year. The Lankan tour of Zimbabwe was scheduled to take place from Oct 3 to Nov 5 where they were down to play two Test matches and a series of limited overs games. Secretary of SLC Nishantha Ranatunga said “We got the confirmation of the Zimbabwe tour being postponed only more..

The vicious cycle of public debt and debt servicing cost

Sep 2 (ST) In as much as fiscal deficits over many years have contributed towards the large public debt, the debt servicing costs of the large accumulated debt is an important underlying reason for incurring recurring fiscal deficits. To break this vicious cycle the fiscal deficit must be reduced significantly to below 5% of GDP to bring down the continuing burden of the public debt servicing cost. Previous columns have pointed out the difficulties of containing the deficit owing to more..

Are diaspora workers source of Lanka’s growth?

Sep 2 (DM) Post-war Sri Lanka has been looking prosperous (with high GDP growth numbers) because it was throwing a grand party for itself; first by the public on imported consumer goods, then by the state on construction materials. Unfortunately, consumption may be the only thing that Sri Lankans are contributing to their growth party. Sri Lanka posted record growth rates of 8% and above in the first two post war years of 2010 and 2011. more..

Lowest performance of the day closest to grand prize

Sep 2 (Island) The Sri Lanka record in the women’s pole vault is nowhere close to international standards. Yet, by breaking it with a mere 3.31 metres leap, Eastern Province athlete Anoma Karunawansa could lay hands on the grand prize (a car), on offer at the 39th National Sports Festival, at the Jayathilaka Stadium, Nawalapitiya, on Sunday, as the authorities continued with the controversial criteria for the grand award, despite pre-event criticisms. more..

A father vents his frustration on son

Sep 2 (SO) This is a story of what happened to cute little Nadaneedan from Maskeliya. Nadaneedan's plight gives us a glimpse of the harsh realities and unpredictability of what life has to offer. Nadaneedan lived happily with his mother, father and three brothers. He was the second child in his family. The little boy was very close to his brothers and was fond of playing with them, like any other 5-year-old. However, tragedy struck one evening to change this little boy's life forever. more..

2013 A/L Hindi paper full of mistakes

Sep 2 (CT) The Examinations Department’s track record in disbursing question papers with mistakes has been further evidenced by complaints from academics that the just concluded 2013 GCE A/L Hindi question paper was teeming with errors. Academics allege that the question paper, which had been set with a host of grammar mistakes, had placed over a thousand students, who sat for the paper in sheer more..

19.5 mln mobile subscribers in Sri Lanka

Sep 2 (ST) Mobile subscriber numbers have risen, to 19,533,274 in June 2013, from 19,335,733 in March 2013, according to statistics. This uptake in mobile subscriber numbers follows a significant drop between 2012 and March 2013, from 20,324,070 to 19,335,733, respectively, that the TRC now attributes to a change in the definition of mobile subscribers, which currently disregards a mobile SIM account that has not received or made a phone call, SMS, etc. over a three month period. more..

Common ATM Switch attracts banks

Sep 2 (ST) The Common Automated Teller Machine (ATM) Switch that was launched in July with Bank of Ceylon and People’s Bank linking over 900 ATMs of those two banks, has seen interest from some major banks in joining this system, officials said. “HNB has completed testing this system with us and they will join soon. Also Seylan and Union Bank are still testing and once this is done they too will come onboard,” a LankaClear Ltd (LCPL) official told the Business Times. more..

GMOA to make more proposals on popularising fresh milk

Sep 2 (Island) The GMOA said it was ready to submit more proposals besides the 10 it had already put foward to help promote the consumption of fresh milk instead of powdered milk. GMOA president Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya said that the Health Ministry had already submitted the 10 GMOA proposals to the Cabinet for approval and his association would submit more to Health Secretary Dr. Nihal Jayathilaka on Sept. 4. more..

Want to be a breakout nation? Sri Lanka told to limit term of political leadership

Sep 2 (FT) A world-famous author and investment advisor on Friday opined that for Sri Lanka to achieve and maintain sustainable economic growth as part of being a much aspired breakout nation, the political leadership cycle should be kept short. Emerging Market Equities, Global Macro and Morgan Stanley Investment Management USA Head Ruchir Sharma, who is the author of the best-seller ‘Breakout Nations: In Pursuit of the Next Economic Miracles,’ said that having formulated more..

Star student denied entry to local uni.

Sep 2 (CT) A star student from Wennappuwa, who obtained four ‘A’s in the Science stream of the London A/L examination, has been denied entry to local universities. Don Judith Saumya Peries, who studied at Gateway International School, Negombo, topped the results islandwide in the Science medium by obtaining four ‘A’s in the London A/L examination. However, the student who dreamt of becoming a doctor had her hopes dashed after local universities turned down her application. more..

Mandana recounts her ordeal

Sep 2 (SL) The past week has been a nightmare. Apart from the trauma experienced by my family and myself due to the pre-dawn break in at our residence on Saturday (24), the biggest disappointment has been the actions of certain sections of the media and their false reportage of the incident. There have been many statements made about the incident as well as the jewellery recovered from the assailants who more..

Why Sri Lanka is losing sleep over the rupee

Sep 2 (ET) Sri Lanka's central bankers are probably more worried about the accelerated fall in the Indian rupee in the past four months than the Reserve Bank of India governor Duvvuri Subbarao. And that's good news. The worst performance of the Indian rupee in Asia Pacific this year at 16% depreciation to the US dollar is probably doing more good in boosting exports than the numerous policies from the govt. Exports of textiles, auto component and numerous other manufactured products more..

Fishing in polluted waters

Sep 2 (ST) Fishing in the Beira Lake is no breaking news story. Not very long ago, fishing for what is popularly known as ‘Beira Batto’ was a leisure time activity or for personal consumption. But today, fishing in this polluted lake has become a lucrative business. Fish caught in these filthy waters are today supplied to small eating houses, food carts, and served as a fried delicacy. M. Karuna, a resident from Slave Island said daily around 20 – 30 men fish in the unhygienic waters of this lake. more..

Summons for Sanga

Sep 2 (Island) Over the years, he has faced many bouncers from Wasim Akram, Dale Steyn and Mitchell Johnson, but star batsman Kumar Sangakkara will face a different kind of chin music today at 2:30pm at Maitland Place. The former captain has showcased excellent footwork to tackle the greatest fast bowlers in the game over the last 13 years, but today’s battle will not be at any of the three premier cricket grounds around more..

'India an important investor in Sri Lanka'

Sep 2 (CT) India is a highly important investor in Sri Lanka, said the Senior Minister Dr. Sarath Amunugama, addressing a meeting held in connection with upgrading of the Indian Overseas Bank’s (IOB) Bambalapitiya Branch and the inauguration of a Foreign Banking Unit. “Sri Lanka and India have long-standing trade, investment, social, and very precious cultural bonds. Capital investment development goes hand in hand with infrastructure development which requires more..

Singapore Gateway to invest US$ 2 bn in Trinco

Sep 2 (DN) Singapore Gateway, a Singapore based institution, will be investing US$ two billion on various development projects in the Trincomalee district. They would set up a heavy industrial zone and invest around US$ two billion to provide infrastructure. Subsequently this facility would be given to Singaporean investors. This venture is programmed to be implemented in three stages. The Investments Promotion Ministry has taken steps to implement several projects. more..

Gotabhaya tells Pillay: US had no moral right to move Geneva resolution

Sep 2 (Island) Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has told US Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay that the United States of America had no moral right to move a resolution targeting Sri Lanka at the UNHRC in Geneva. The Defence Secretary pointed out the irrationality in the US action in the wake of atrocities committed by its forces in various parts of the world. The US twice moved resolutions in Geneva condemning more..

Politico demands Rs. 5 mn each from paddy millers

Sep 2 (Island) Paddy millers complain that a politician has demanded Rs. 5 million each from them and keeps sending a Paddy Marketing Board vehicle to collect the money. The millers say that when they complained that they were not in a position to pay such a big sum, the politician ordered the PMB to pay them the milling charges. Last week alone, the PMB paid them Rs. 27 million as milling charges. This had resulted in a breach of the agreement between millers and the PMB to more..

Admission systems to Parliament costs Rs 12 M

Sep 2 (CT) The mechanized security system pertaining to the admission and identifying and admitting individuals visiting Parliament, has cost the country Rs 12 million. According to sources, repairs had been carried out to these systems on two occasions, the first in 2002 costing Rs 6 million, and later in 2005, costing Rs 3.5 million. Those responsible for the systems malfunctioning have been identified but no action has been taken against them to date, sources said. more..

New Oluvil Harbour vested in the public

Sep 2 (IL) The newly constructed Oluvil commercial port and fisheries harbour together with the ice manufacturing plant constructed in the Eastern Province with aid from Denmark have been vested in the public by President Rajapaksa today (1). Govt in its plans to give momentum to its economic development under the five hub concept had decided to develop fisheries harbours and ports which would definitely be a benefit to more..

New IDs for senior citizens

Sep 2 (DN) The Social Service Ministry has taken measures to issue new identity cards for senior citizens. “This new identity card will be produced using modern technology and would include personal details of the person, blood group, bank account numbers etc. Health problems of the individual concerned,” ministry sources said. Senior citizens will be able to get special benefits using this new identity card. A 5% discount will be provided by all SPC outlets for those in possession of more..

Religious leaders are duty bound to lead children in correct path - President

Sep 2 (GDI) President Mahinda Rajapaksa said that all religions teach the people to live in peace and harmony discarding hatred and anger. The President made the observation when he participated in the opening of the renovated St.Peters Church in Vakarai which was totally damaged due to the Tsunami on Sunday. Speaking further the President said that this factor is vital today and all religious leaders should lead the younger generation on the correct path. more..

Sri Lanka criticises UN rights chief's 'authoritarian' comment

Sep 2 (Reuters) Sri Lanka's govt said U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay had acted beyond her mandate in saying the country was heading in an authoritarian direction. Pillay, ending a 7-day mission to assess Sri Lanka's progress after the 26-year war between the govt and separatist Tamils, said on Saturday the country was "showing signs of heading in an increasingly authoritarian direction. "The High Commissioner's observation is more..

Bank of the people made bankrupt by politicos

Sep 2 (DM) The Daily Mirror in its Editorial last Monday focused on the grave economic crisis the Rajapaksa regime is facing despite denials or boastful claims by Govt leaders and top officials. We revealed that according to Finance Ministry figures, Sri Lanka’s export earnings had declined drastically and the revenue had come down by 3% to Rs. 509.4 billion, while expenditure had increased by 3.3% to Rs. 861.6 billion during the first half of this year compared to statistics last year. more..

First year commemoration : Wijeyapala Mendis A true advocate of Buddhism

Sep 2 (DM) “Wise men who avoid the love of wealth and bonds in life are not owners of anything. Such persons stay apart from demerits and make their minds pure.” I still remember Wijeyapala Mendis speaking out the above lines preached by our Buddha. Mudalindu David Mendis was the son of Seliyas Mendis and his beloved wife who came to Thimbirigaskatuwa at Negombo from Randombe, Balapitiya in the Galle District. He was a first- class bus owner at that time in the Negombo area more..

'We as a country must learn from the past'

Sep 2 (DM) Kumar Sangakkara is a man of many talents, having mesmerized the world with his bat- he has proven to be one of the greatest ambassadors of the country. Having been Sri Lanka’s most consistent batsman and recognised as the best in the world repetitively by the ICC, Kumar is not a man to mince his words. He is known to call a spade a spade, and today the international cricketing icon and an more..

Govt unmoved

Sep 2 (SL) The govt last week refused to budge on its stand over various issues during several meetings held with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. Pillay had called for the PTA to be abolished, disappearances to be investigated, and for accountability on some of the allegations over the final stages of the war. As part of her tour of the country, Pillay visited parts of the final battle more..

Navi Pillay confronted with ‘missing’ stories, demos on 7-day visit

Sep 2 (ST) Sri Lanka first invited the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to visit in April 2011. When Navi Pillay finally undertook her overdue excursion, it coincided with the week in which the UN observes International Day of the Victims of Enforcd Disappearances. At seven days, this was also the longest official visit to a single country that Ms. Pillay has made since taking over as UN human rights chief in September 2008. more..

SAARC Finance Ministers focus on trade liberalisation

Sep 2 (FT) Trade liberalisation in South Asia should be preceded by tax and Customs reforms to allow free flow of goods and services for economic growth, officials said on Friday. Detailing discussions that took place when SAARC Finance Ministers met to discuss ways to promote intra-regional trade in Colombo, Finance Ministry Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundera identified several bottle necks. more..

Election related violations worst in Kandy

Sep 2 (CT) PAFFREL, yesterday noted that 259 election violations have been reported so far from the three provinces in which Provincial Council elections are to be held. There have been 44 election violations reported in the Northern Province, 65 incidents in the North Western Province and 150 incidents in the Central Province. The most number of election-related violations were reported from the Kandy District. more..

'Premachandran must be sued'

Sep 2 (CT) Legal action must be taken against TNA MP Suresh Premachandran for supporting to initiate an arms conflict, Minister Wimal Weerawansa said. Referring to a statement made by TNA MP Premachndran, that a solution which goes beyond the federal system can be taken if they take arms; minister said intelligence units and CID should immediately take note of it. He added, according to Premachndran they can have a more..

Sri Lanka Army's third annual defence seminar to begin tomorrow

Sep 2 (MoD) 'Post-Conflict Sri Lanka - Challenges & Regional Stability' will be the theme of the 3rd consecutive Defence Seminar which will be commenced tomorrow at the Galadari Hotel in Colombo. Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Daya Ratnayake will address the inaugural session of the three-day event. more..

UPFA’s election malpractices: Polls chief incapable of taking corrective action – SF

Sep 2 (Island) Democratic Party leader Gen. Sarath Fonseka alleged that Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya had failed to prevent the govt from flouting election laws in the run-up to the Sept. 21 PC polls in the Central, North-Western and Northern Provinces on. Former presidential candidate and ex-MP said that the situation was deteriorating rapidly in spite of polls chief Deshapriya’s efforts. more..

Sri Lankan Minister promises to facilitate TN-Jaffna fishermen meet

Sep 2 (Hindu) Minister Basil Rajapaksa has promised to facilitate a meeting between fishermen’s representatives from TN and Jaffna to prevent the arrest of fishermen from both sides who often strayed into each other’s territories. During a 45-minute meeting with Congress MP K.S. Alagiri and SL Minister Senthil Thondaman, Rajapaksa had said it was poor fishermen from TN who normally bore the brunt of the conflict. more..

Sri Lanka rights group 'harassed after UN meeting'

Sep 2 (AFP) A Catholic-run human rights group working in northeastern Sri Lanka said Monday it had been harassed by security personnel after meeting UN rights chief Navi Pillay last week. Pillay ended her first trip to the formerly war-ravaged country at the weekend with a stinging press conference in which she accused the govt of becoming "increasingly authoritarian". Veerasan Yogeswaran, a 60-year-old Jesuit priest who more..