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Hotline on complaints of unregistered bottled water

Jan 29 (DN) The public can complain about unregistered and unhygienic bottled water on 0113071073, a Health Ministry spokesman said. The public can complain to the Health Ministry’s Food and Environmental Health Unit on this number as several instances have been reported of rampant sale of unregistered and unhygienic bottled water. Producing or the sale of unregistered or unhygienic bottled water is illegal and a punishable offence under Food Act Number 26 of 1980. more..

NPC passes resolution to build monument for war dead

Jan 29 (CT) A resolution was passed unanimously at the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) yesterday, to build a monument to remember those who died during the final stages of the war in Mullivaikkal, Mullaitivu. The resolution was proposed by NPC Councillor representing Mullaitivu, T. Raviharan. Speaking to Ceylon Today, Raviharan said thousands of people died in the Vanni during the final stages of the war, but there is no monument to remember them by. more..

MoD to probe TNA-LTTE nexus ahead of Geneva UNHRC summit

Jan 29 (Island) The Ministry of Defence (MoD) would probe the nexus between the LTTE and the five-party TNA, a senior MoD spokesman said. Official said that the investigation would focus on the close relationship between the LTTE and the TNA since late 2001, when the political grouping recognised the LTTE as the sole representatives of Tamil speaking people. Based on findings, legal action would be taken against TNA members, more..

Tripping over electricity rates

Jan 29 (DM) Four of Sri Lanka’s power stations broke down last week and over the weekend two of them – the Kelanitissa power station the controversial Norochcholai coal power project – were still out of commission, electrifying speculation that the already high bills may be increased. When a huge increase in electricity bills was imposed from June last year, the CEB promised that the huge fuel-adjustment surcharge would be reduced or removed when more electricity was obtained from more..

No one takes the call for an Arab Spring in Sri Lanka seriously

Jan 29 (DM) “Arab Spring” is a term used by the West and its acolytes in other parts of the world including Sri Lanka, to describe the Arab awakening in the Middle East whereby the people threw away the shackles of dictatorship and demanded 'democracy’. "Democracy", however, is not by any means desirable only as a demand. It must be implemented to bear fruit. Further, 'democracy’ does not connote indiscipline and is not an end in itself, but a means towards an end – that ‘end’ more..

‘Serious erosion of democracy pushed me to politics’

Jan 29 (DM) Popular Actor Ravindra Yasas is intending to contest in upcoming provincial elections under the Democratic Party led by former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka. Yasas is a talented actor who has portrayed himself in a number of political satires on television and has a rare talent in singing ‘Virindu’, making a mockery of current social and political issues. He said, the main reason for him to contest the election is more..

A cry for answers

Jan 29 (SL) What do we tell the children about their father? How do we run the households? These were some of the questions that weeping women asked the Presidential Commission on Disappearances which had public sittings in the North last week. Anandi Sasitharan, the wife of former LTTE Trincomalee District political head S. Elilan was among those who met the Presidential Commission on disappearances and more..

Stiff new rules to protect workers’ rights and employers from racketeering agents

Jan 29 (ST) Sri Lankan expatriate workers who arbitrarily terminate their work agreements in West Asian countries face jail terms, stiff fines and will be blacklisted in the host country under a new agreement to be implemented soon, senior officials and the industry said yesterday. A MoU between Sri Lanka and the receiving countries will also at the same time provide the fullest protection of the workers’ rights such as more..

‘Minister’s proposal leads to destruction of Walla Patta trees’

Jan 29 (Island) Wildlife Chief yesterday revealed that the illegal felling of high value Walla Patta (Gyrinops walla) tree had increased dramatically on private lands during the last few days after the Agriculture Minister’s proposal to legalise the export of the inner bark of the tree used in the manufacture of expensive perfumes. Wildlife Conservation Department (WCD), Director General, H. D. Ratnayake told The Island that more..

No place to lay the wreath

Jan 29 (DC) This Republic Day, I watched the Indian high commissioner ceremonially lay a wreath at the impressive Indian Peace-Keeping Force war memorial in Colombo. Sri Lankan Navy bug­lers suitably participated in the solemn function. The names of 1,000 Indian soldiers killed in Sri Lanka are inscribed in golden letters on black granite at the IPKF memorial. I knew some of the officers whose names are inscribed there. more..

Sri Lanka: SE Asia's Leprosy capital

Jan 29 (CT) Sri Lanka, with an annual reportage of 2000 cases of Leprosy (7%) has recorded the highest number of persons who suffer from the disease in the South-East Asian region, the Director of the Anti-Leprosy Campaign, Dr. M.L.S. Nilanthi Fernando, said. In 2013, of the 177 cases of children below the age of 15 detected as being afflicted with the disease, 134 were reported as having some form of deformity more..

SL refuses 70 day fishing limit annually for Indian fishermen in Lankan waters

Jan 29 (DN) Sri Lanka will never let Indian fishermen fish in Sri Lanka's territorial waters and use 'bottom trawling' as they did during the past, and this will be guranteed by agreement between the Indian govt and a Sri Lankan NGO, Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne said. The Sri Lankan govt and the Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Ministry are the only authorities having the right to take such decisions, he added. more..

TN poaching in Lankan waters: JHU decries double standards of TNA

Jan 29 (Island) JHU accused the TNA which claimed to fight for the rights of Tamil people in the Northern Province of being silent on mass scale poaching by TN fishermen in northern waters. JHU spokesman Nishantha Sri Warnasinghe said that though the TNA was campaigning around the world against the present govt claiming that it had violated the rights of Tamil people during the final phase of the war more..

Ananthi undecided on Geneva

Jan 29 (CG) NPC member Ananthi Sasitharan says she has not decided if she will travel to Geneva for the UNHRC sessions in March. Sasitharan said that she had presented a proposal to the NPC on Monday calling for an NPC delegation to head to Geneva during the March sessions. NPC had later proposed that she travel to Geneva but Sasitharan says she did not expect to be nominated and will need time to decide. more..

Complaint against Harsha withdrawn

Jan 29 (DM) A medical officer’s driver who lodged complaint claiming that UNP MP Harsha De Silva had assaulted him over a land dispute in Longden place, Colombo on Sunday, had withdrawn his complaint today, Police said. They said the complaint was withdrawn after driver and Mr. de Silva had agreed it was not necessary to investigate this matter any further. The driver had complained to the Narahenpita police last Sunday that more..

The joke’s on the Kelaniya voter!

Jan 29 (CT) Mervyn Silva is back in the political limelight with an unholy bang. In an implausibly bizarre turn of events, President Rajapaksa has indicated to the people in Kelaniya in general, and the supporters of the UPFA in particular, ‘it’s his way or the highway!’ The decision to reinstate the unapologetic braggart who fell from grace due to his own Mafioso-style conduct of political affairs, to the position of Kelaniya SLFP Organizer, has disparaged both voter intelligence and more..

Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.5%

Jan 29 (LBO) Sri Lanka stocks close 0.54% higher Wednesday ending a two day negative rally with diversified stocks gaining. All Share Price Index closed 33.31 points higher at 6,252.14, up 0.54%. The S&P SL20 closed 30.09 points higher at 3,465.96, up 0.88%. Turnover was 809.31 million rupees, down from 1.45 billion rupees a day earlier, with stocks of 87 firms closing in the red against 104 gainers. HNB non-voting closed 90 cents higher at 127.90 rupees with two off market more..

Daily mirror Cartoon

Federalism: A mechanism for citizens to be close partners in Sri Lanka

Jan 29 (CT) History has shown that there have been disputes culminating in wars and people have witnessed that the world is full of cruelty and injustice on account of the greed for power and wealth. The continuing wars on various pretext claimed untold numbers of human lives and destruction of properties. The main issue is what have the war achieved other than shattering the lives of peace loving citizens who wanted to be close partners in their countries. more..

BOI nets reputed Rotterdam based IT company

Jan 29 (Island) ISM eCommerce recently signed an agreement with the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka for setting up a project to develop Software and provide Business Processing Outsourcing (BPO) services for the export market. The total value of this investment is US$ 3 Million. ISM eCompany is a Rotterdam based full service and innovative e-commerce and e-learning firm. The company develops for both practices, globally renowned products (Sana and Easygenerator) and more..

Int'l political lobbyist aids Tamil children reunite with SL parents in Norway

Jan 29 (CT) As the struggle launched by the SL parents of Tamil origin in Norway, to get their children released from foster care, reaches its fourth year without much hope, international political lobbyist and strategist, Muheed Jeeran, has set his sights on rescuing Sri Lankan children from the Norwegian Govt to reunite with their parents in Norway. Jeeran has focused his efforts on returning the SL children living more..

Biggest leads, and highest score at No. 8

Jan 29 (CI) Sri Lanka's first-innings lead of 498 is the seventh-highest in Test cricket. The last time a team took a bigger lead was in 2006, and Sri Lanka were the dominant side in that game as well: against South Africa in Colombo, they declared at 756 for 5, with Mahela Jayawardene scoring 374 and Kumar Sangakkara 287, after South Africa had been bowled out for 169 in their first innings. At the receiving end in that match, South Africa had dished out similar treatment to England more..

Kelaniya PS members back Prasanna for CM

Jan 29 (Island) UPFA members of the Kelaniya Pradeshiya Sabha led by its Chairman Prasanna Ranaweera have decided to support former Western Province Chief Minister Prasanna Ranathunga. They had decided to extend their whole hearted support to Ranathunga as he was a decent politician Prasanna Ranaweera said, yesterday. Ranaweera and his fellow PS members have launched a campaign to urge the government to remove Minister Mervyn Silva as the SLFP organiser for Kelaniya. more..

Mahela, Vithanage help SL surge to 498 lead

Jan 29 (CI) Individual milestones dominated the most one-sided of the three days so far as Sri Lanka eventually declared after piling on a whopping 730 for 6, after Mahela Jayawardene reached his seventh double-century and Kithuruwan Vithanage scored his maiden century in only his third Test. By tea, Sri Lanka were already ahead by a healthy 370, but the captain Angelo Mathews held back the declaration till Jayawardene more..

Rupee edges up on exporter dollar sales

Jan 29 (Reuters) Rupee traded firmer on Wednesday, moving away from its near one-week low as exporters offloaded dollars in the absence of importers, while a state bank sold the greenback at 130.85, dealers said. Spot rupee was traded at 130.80/85 per dollar at 0638 GMT firmer from Tuesday's close of 130.80/90, its lowest since Jan. 22. Analysts said exporter dollar sales through banks and by corporates helped the rupee. Rupee fell 0.2% in the previous two sessions more..

Injustice caused to Village students will be eliminated - President

Jan 29 (GDI) President Rajapaksa said that it is essential to alleviate the historical injustice done to the students of village schools by providing all facilities only to urban schools and depriving the students of village schools the opportunities of obtaining education in the science field. He said that it is to rectify this injustice under the Mahinda Chintana Future Vision Mahindodaya Technology laboratories are being established in one thousand secondary schools. more..

India, Lanka discuss fishermen, maritime security trilateral

Jan 29 (PTI) External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid today held extensive talks with his Sri Lankan counterpart G L Peiris on key bilateral issues including fishermen, India-assisted developmental project in Northern Province and prospects for enhanced economic cooperation. There was also a discussion about the satisfactory progress of the trilateral cooperation on maritime security among India, SL and Maldives. more..

Lawyers in stamp jilmart face prosecution

Jan 29 (Island) The Presidential Investigation Unit which probed the activities of lawyers and notaries alleged to have cheated billions of rupees by affixing low value stamps when registering lands, has handed over its report to President Rajapaksa. The govt is expected to prosecute the errant lawyers and notaries involved in stamp rackets which have cost the state billions of rupees. Registrar General of lands E.M. Gunasekera, asked for comment, said that the racket was not of recent origin more..

Orange Electric invests in Rs 100 m factory

Jan 29 (DN) Orange Electric has invested over Rs. 100 million to open a factory in Borelasgamuwa to use scrapped copper to manufacture cables. Copper scrap is being exported in a big way to India through illegal means and they are recycled and sent back to Sri Lanka as raw materials. Managing Director Orange, Kushan Kodituwakku said they observed this negative trend and after advanced R&D, have now decided to purchase scrap. “At our new factory we purify and recycle this scrap to more..

Press Colombo to allow war crimes probe: Amnesty to India

Jan 29 (IANS) India must press Colombo to allow an independent international probe into the alleged war crimes committed during the Sri Lankan civil war, Amnesty International said. Sri Lanka's Northern Provincial Council Jan 27 passed a resolution calling for an international investigation into alleged war crimes, Amnesty said. Elections for the NPC were held in Sept 2013 in which the TNA came to power. more..

Sri Lanka: Christians protest after attacks by Buddhist extremists

Jan 29 (CT) More than 2,000 Christians gathered in Colombo on Sunday to protest against a perceived lack of religious freedom in Sri Lanka, following recent attacks on Christian places of worship by Buddhist extremists. Two churches and a Christian prayer centre were attacked on Jan. 12 by Buddhist mobs claiming they were illegal and aiming to take Buddhists away from their religion. The prayer centre, belonging to the Church of the Foursquare Gospel in Pitipana, near Colombo, more..

SL woman arrested with foreign currency

Jan 29 (DM) A 35-year-old Sri Lankan woman was arrested at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) last night while attempting to smuggle in foreign currency worth Rs.5,090,666 concealed in her hand bag, Customs media spokesman Leslie Gamini said. He said the woman was carrying 16,444 Euro and 16,000 US dollars which were found inside a false bottom of her hand bag. The woman had arrived from Chennai. Preliminary investigations had revealed that she was more..

SLC to slash contracted players by half

Jan 29 (DM) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) will slash the number of centrally contracted players to 50, cutting almost 50% of the number of players who received annual contracts previously. However, match fees for domestic premier tournament and other tournaments will be increased significantly in order to ensure the quality of local tournaments and keep the player interest in the domestic game. Another aim of increasing the match fees more..

GL & Mahinda dropped from Geneva tour ?

Jan 29 (LT) It is reported that Minister G.L. Peiris and Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe who was involved in human rights matters in this country have been dropped from Sri Lanka’s team to the session of UNHRC to be held in Geneva. Instead of them Sajin Vaas Gunawardene and Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga have been appointed say sources. It is stated that Messrs. Sajin Vaas Gunawardene and Lalith Weeratunga are already having discussions with ambassadors and more..

Schoolboy dies vaulting over cracked wall

Jan 29 (Island) A 19-year-old student succumbed to his head injuries on Monday night, after a part of a wall collapsed onto his body unexpectedly. The victim, Kasun Chathuranga, of Okkampitiya, Buttala had jumped over a wall in the Tangalle area where he was attending a tuition class with some of his friends when it collapsed on him. His colleagues had escaped unhurt, but the victim had fallen to the ground with part of the wall that was partly cracked while trying to jump over it, more..

Video: 250 plastic ballot boxes for Colombo

Jan 29 (DM) Elections Chief Mahinda Desapriya said the Department would use see-through plastic ballot boxes imported from Kenya for the forthcoming elections to WPC. “We have 250 plastic ballot boxes. We will use them this time in the Colombo area on a experimental basis,” Mr. Desapriya said. He said the Treasury had instructed him to opt for the use of locally manufactured plastic ballot boxes as a cost cutting exercise. more..

Navy hands over 69 Indians

Jan 29 (CG) The Sri Lanka Navy assisted in the repatriation of 69 Indian fishermen with 15 fishing boats today. The Indians were handed over to the Indian Coast Guard Ship “Vigraha” at the International Maritime Boundary Line off Kankasanthurei. Sri Lanka Navy Ship “Prathapa”, assisted by Coast Guard vessels, CG 42 and CG 46, were deployed in the missing to tranfer the Indian fishermen to the Indian navy. On Sunday the navy facilitated the repatriation of 20 SL more..

Vasu condemns professionals’ unprofessional conduct towards national languages

Jan 29 (Island) "Resorting to only English when holding annual functions of professionals and their organisations is a very grave mistake committed towards our mother languages and towards the national language policy " Minister Vasudeva Nanayakkara said in a communiqué. "We have come to know that the professional organisations consisting of highly esteemed professionals resort to completely dropping the national languages in handling their work", he noted. more..

Canada’s U19 World Cup bowler Stephan Rajasingham inspired by Chaminda Vaas

Jan 29 (LR) Canada’s U19 World Cup opening bowler was captivated by Sri Lankan spearhead Chaminda Vaas’ record-breaking performance in 2003. Stephan Rajasingam was 10 years old and woke up in the early morn-ing hours to watch 2003 ICC Cricket World Cup live from South Africa with his father Anton. Sri Lankan pace bowler Vaas grabbed a record haul of 23 wickets including a hat-trick off the first three balls of a match more..

President reduces democracy to elections and human rights to defeating terrorism!

Jan 30 (CT) I am basing this critique mainly on President’s interview to the Daily Mirror titled “Critics of SL Have a Misguided Notion” published on 1 January 2014, as it is always better to be precise when discussing the issues of human rights or democracy. The views expressed in this interview have no excuses of ‘problems of articulation,’ like in a ‘on the spot’ interview, as it was conducted in advance through email, probably with other’s assistance. more..