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Day 4: SA set for final-day spin inquisition

July 27 (CI) Sri Lanka had one objective when the day began: score as quickly as possible and declare. They did exactly that as they rattled along at well above four runs an over - more than double what South Africa managed in the first innings - to swell the lead to 368, despite more than an hour being lost due to rain and bad light. In Galle, Sri Lanka had to chase 370 in 120 overs, while here they have a whole day to wheedle more..

Former CJ asks for three days

July 27 (Island) Former Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake yesterday declined to respond immediately to a question on what took her to the New Town Hall on Thursday when the possibility of fielding a common opposition candidate at the next presidential election was discussed. Asked why she had attended that meeting as she had not participated in any political events since her impeachment, she said she needed three days to respond to the question. more..

Govt sees a local conspiracy

July 27 (CG) The Govt says there is a conspiracy underway locally against President Mahinda Rajapaksa and his administration. Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said that the opposition, well aware that they cannot defeat the Govt at an election, are not involved in a conspiracy to remove the Govt through other means. He said that as part of the conspiracy several rumors are being spread and attempts are being made to give the wrong message to the local public. more..

Dickwella fined for claiming unfair catch

July 27 (CI) Sri Lanka's debutant wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella has been fined 10% of the match fee and received an official reprimand, for claiming an unfair catch on day three of the second Test against South Africa. Dickwella had admitted to the Level 1 breach of the ICC's Code of Conduct, and accepted the sanction imposed by match referee Jeff Crowe. He was found to have breached article 2.1.8 of the code, which more..

Basil lauds Media for responsible reporting

July 27 (NS) The defeat of the LTTE five years ago made us a riots-free society and whatever the incidents occurred due to some pathetic individual issues around the island was prevented making big issues of the country by the media as well as other responsible authorities including the political leadership, said by Minister Basil Rajapaksa. He made these observations at a seminar for journalists and schoolchildren under the theme of “The role of the media for social conciliation” more..

People cannot be deceived all the time

July 27 (ST) Kohonawala is a remote village in the Uva province located at the top of a mountain range in the Badulla district. The village has a population of around 48 families. Nicknamed “Ira payana nathi gama,” -the village where the sun does not rise the village has neither water, electricity nor a proper roadway. Indeed the village is appropriately nicknamed. It is surrounded by the mountains and only a few streaks of sunlight seep in at around 10 am! Darkness covers rest of the day. more..

Uva PC poll: SLFP Nominations Board to select candidates on Monday

July 27 (Island) The Nominations Board of the SLFP to select candidates for the forthcoming election to the Uva PC is scheduled to meet at SLFP HQ at T.B. Jayah Mawatha tomorrow from 10 am onwards. Nominations Board will select 17 candidates for the Moneragala district and 21 for the Badulla district. Board will comprise Ministers W.D.J. Seneviratne (Chairman) and Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Senior Minister more..

McDonald’s denies involvement in expired meat scandal

July 27 (NS) The Sri Lankan arm of fast food giant McDonald’s yesterday said the expired meat scandal in China had no bearing on operations in the country as all meat used for its products were obtained locally. When contacted, a company official at the fast food chain’s Kollupitiya branch said McDonald’s in Sri Lanka does not import ‘even a piece of paper’ from China, stating all its products were locally sourced. The statement was made after The Nation contacted McDonald’s to more..

Oxonian Heart Foundation to spend $ 2 mn. uplifting coronary care in north

July 27 (Island) A group of Sri Lankans led by Dr. Ravi Perumalpillai is championing the cause of providing open heart surgical facilities to citizens in the North and North-East of the island, a Colombo news conference was told last week. The Oxonian Heart Foundation was created in 2012 with the aim of treating the impoverished and destitute who suffer from heart disease. Their demographic target includes those along the Jaffna peninsula and the Vanni, an area home to 1.2 million people. more..

Japan agreeable to domestic inquiry conforming to international standards

July 27 (Island) Japan believes the SL govt should provide proper information to the ongoing UN war crimes probe against it and the LTTE. Japanese Ambassador, Nobuhito Hobo, said that the Rajapaksa regime had the "proper" information pertaining to the period of the war between it and LTTE that was being investigated by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on a mandate given by UNHRC. more..

South Africa keeping their options open

July 27 (CI) If South Africa are still batting at tea on day five, they will go all out to win the Colombo Test. That is the warning AB de Villiers sounded after a day in which momentum was finally infused into a match that has stood in limbo through its middle portions. "If I am coming in after tea and we need six or seven an over I might give it a go," de Villiers said. "After tea tomorrow if we have wickets in hands that possibility will be there. You've got to find the balance between being positive & defensive. more..

India to share Pakistani official’s info

July 27 (CG) India will be informing Sri Lanka about an official working with the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo who was allegedly playing a key role in planning terror strikes at the behest of ISI on the US and Israeli consulates in the southern part India. The information will be shared with Sri Lankan authorities by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) signed between the two countries in 2010, official sources said. more..

Multinational seeks to ‘glut-out’ Lanka Sathosa

July 27 (NS) A leading multi-national company operating in Sri Lanka with a wide range of personal care products is aggressively pursuing to gain special privileges in Lanka Sathosa, in violation of a national policies adopted by the sector. The concerned parties who noted the issue questioned as to how the officials under-value President’s Mahinda Chinthana development policy which gives priority for a local product based economy. more..

Breakaway group in the making to 'rescue' SLFP!

July 27 (AM) A breakaway group within the SLFP is now in the making aiming to “rescue” the ruling party from its present leader, Sunday Lankadeepa newspaper reported today. According to the report, a large number of senior members of the SLFP, who are disillusioned with the present administration, have extended their support to this campaign. It is said that ruling party members who are supportive of this campaign are affiliated with former President Chandrika Kumaratunga. more..

Secretary Defence graces centenary celebration of Ananda College hostel

July 27 (MoD) Secretary Defence and Urban Development Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa graced the Centenary celebration of the Ananda College hostel yesterday (24). Mr. Rajapaksa attended as the chief guest at the main function held at the college premises. A proud product of Ananada College, Mr. Rajapaksa unveiled a commemorative plaque upon the invitation of the principle of the School Mr. Kithsiri Liyanagamage to mark the historical occasion. more..

Next public sittings of Missing Persons Commission in Mannar

July 27 (GDI) Presidential Commission to Investigate Complaints Regarding Missing Persons will hold its next public sittings in Mannar. It will be held on August 08 and 09 in Manthai West, in Mannar on Aug 10 and in Madhu on August 11. President Rajapaksa recently appointed internationally renowned legal luminaries - Sir Desmond de Silva, Sir Jeffrey Nice and Professor David Crane - to serve on more..

Human rights to be included in school curriculum

July 27 (NS) Moves are afoot to include human rights as part of the school curriculum following a recommendation by the Human Rights Council of Sri Lanka (HRCSL). Director General of National Institute of Education (NIE) Prof. Abeyrathna Bandara said that HRCSL had come forward with certain proposals in order to include human rights in the school curriculum and added that they were in the process of formulating a system through which the subject could be implemented. more..

IGP seeks ministry secretary's approval to ensure Upul Jayasuriya's security

July 27 (AM) IGP N.K. Illangakoon has sought the approval of secretary to the Ministry of Law and Order regarding a request made to IGP by BASL president Upul Jayasuriya that he be provided personal security while traveling. In response to BASL President, Ajith Wickramasekara the Staff DIG to the IGP stated that the request had been forwarded to the Secretary, Minister of Law and Order, seeking approval. Retired Major General Nanda Mallawarachchi is the Secretary of more..

BIA among the most inefficient in Asia

July 27 (CG) The Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) has been rated as one of the most inefficient international airports in Asia. The rating has been done by the Airport Transport Research Society (ATRS) and is included in the Annual Global Airport Benchmarking Report. The ATRS released the results of its annual benchmarking study of commercial airports in Europe, Asia and Pacific, and North America. more..

Al-Qaeda is not operating in Sri Lanka

July 27 (CG) The Ministry of Defence says Al Qaeda does not have a base in Sri Lanka nor does any other terrorist organization. Defence Ministry spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said that on several occasions there had been allegations that foreign terrorist groups were using Sri Lanka as a base for training. He said that the Sri Lankan authorities have not given any space for such groups to operate inside Sri Lanka. “Terrorism is terrorism no matter what form it is in. more..

'PM post, useless to country'

July 27 (SM) The post of Prime Minister is of no use to this country, and according to my personal opinion, it should be abolished, Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne has said. Speaking to 'Silumina', he has said that executive presidency is essential for the country is to be progressed as an independent, developed state. Thought the issue of abolishing executive presidency had risen into prominence during every presidential election in the past, it was always limited to mere words. more..

Asylum-seekers held on high seas arrive in Australia

July 27 (AFP) The first group of 157 asylum-seekers who attempted to enter Australia by boat arrived on the country's mainland Sunday, after being held at sea for weeks. Eighty-one asylum-seekers arrived at the remote Curtin Immigration Detention Centre in Western Australia, a spokesman for the facility said, after they were reportedly flown there by the govt from the remote atoll of Cocos Islands in the Indian Ocean. more..

Advised at last

July 28 (SL) They accuse President Rajapaksa of trying to checkmate them. The Presidential Proclamation last week appointing a three member Advisory Council certainly had the effect of leaving many in shock. Chaired by Sir Desmond de Silva QC, the Council to the Commission of Inquiry on Missing persons now tasked to investigate alleged war crimes, includes Sir Geoffrey Nice and David M. Crane. Chairman said that he will look to ensure the investigation is conducted in a fair manner. more..

Which Buddha? Whose Buddhism?

July 28 (CT) King Dutugemunu fought his first war en famille, literally. According to Mahawamsa, he waged two succession-wars against his usurping younger brother, Tissa. It was after securing his throne that Dutugemunu began his series of wars against several ‘lesser’ kings and ultimately against King Elara. Again according to Mahawamsa, ‘many thousands’ lives were lost in the two succession wars. Since these were civil conflicts, it is reasonable to assume that more..

Ramazan: The blessed month of the Quran

July 28 (SO) All praise belongs to Allah, we extol him, seek his help and his forgiveness. Al-Quran! What a profound book this is. The Quran that Allah has gifted to humanity. See how it inspires us. “Read” is the very first word that commanded humanity. It is remarkably significant that the starting point of Islam starts with the word Read! This indicates that striving after knowledge and understanding it in the correct perspective more..

SL now faces two international inquiries

July 28 (NS) In a move that caught many by surprise the govt last week announced it was appointing three ‘international experts’ to advise the Presidential Commission to Investigate Complaints Regarding Missing Persons. It is a step that calls into question the govt’s long-term stance on the issue. The announcement itself was a low-key affair. It was attributed to an unnamed ‘govt spokesman’ and was not accompanied by the usual fanfare of a media conference. more..

View from Ritigala - by mahasona

July 28 (NS) Navi Pillay’s ‘investigation team’ has run into a problem. No one in South Asia is willing to give them visas. Now South Asian countries have fairly relaxed visa policies. There are no cavity searches to talk about. That stuff happens in the ‘civilized’ West. So if Pillay’s buddies are such bad eggs that even countries in South Asia don’t want them around, they must really smell bad! The Chief Justice, in his wisdom and compassion, has appealed to the trustees of Munneswaram more..

‘People will decide’

July 28 (SL) Despite the fact that President Rajapaksa has broadened the scope of the Presidential Commission on missing persons, the TNA shows no faith in the govt that they carry out proper investigations. Referring to previous Udalagama Commission, the TNA pointed out, that it is a glaring example that appointment of international experts would not make any difference if they are not allowed to act independently. more..

Reconciliation can best take place on a single track

July 28 (SL) The govt has recently been acting in an openly antagonistic way against civil society organisations. Governmental actions against human rights defenders and civil society groups took a turn for the worse in the run up to the UNHRC resolution on war crimes in Geneva in March. Several human rights defenders were arrested and some of them still continue to languish in prison. One of the most poignant of these accounts of the large scale arrests that took place in March and April of this year more..

Relevance of freedom of association in 1992 and today; Ratawesi Peramuna

July 28 (CT) NGOs, are the popular punching bag of the Govt of Sri Lanka (GOSL), when its actions are challenged by any individual and/or organization. Name-calling, brandishing circulars to warn NGOs and now a draconian law to prevent them from raising public issues has been the modus operandi of the regime to curb and crush dissent. The context of the sudden and heightened attack on NGOs is also relevant. Hostilities between the GOSL and the LTTE have ended in the decisive victory of more..

A captain's sacrifice for the SL family

July 28 (CI) "We are like a family" Sri Lanka's captain Angelo Mathews likes to say this when asked about the mood in his camp. Sometimes, you can almost hear the room cringe in unison. The camaraderie in the dressing room is obvious, but you wonder what makes Mathews use the word "family". Do they accidentally use each other's toothbrushes on tour? Does Rangana Herath borrow Mathews' car without permission and more..

Full implementation of 13 - A

July 28 (Island) Island of Monday, 9 June published a Commentary by Mr. Neville Ladduwahetty on India’s call to the SL Govt for ‘Full Implementation’ of the 13th Amendment. This article is in response to that Commentary. Mr. Ladduwahetty (NLH hereinafter) asserts that India was intimately involved in the actual drafting of the 13th Amendment. Had it been the case there would have been similarity in the Lists of devolution and there would have been no Provincial Councils Act. more..

Editorial: Troubled by saviours

July 28 (Island) Libya continues to hurtle down a spiral of violence apparently with no prospect of recovery. Earlier the Libyans were troubled by one eccentric dictator called Gaddafi and now they have scores of violent militias to contend with. Under Gaddafi, they at least had a robust welfare system though he and his family stashed away billions of petrodollars in offshore accounts. They backed the rebellion against him as they were craving for freedom and democracy, but today more..

'Objective is to win at all costs'

July 28 (CI) Sri Lanka have not lost a Test series at home to South Africa since 1993. If they are to protect that record, the final day of the tour has to be about all-out attack, says Kumar Sangakkara. "Our objective is to win at all costs," he said. "Our chances are pretty good. It would have been good if all the overs had been bowled today. I thought with the way that the wicket is, Herath is going to bowl well to the lefties. more..

South Africa sweat on underperforming Petersen, Tahir

July 28 (CI) Spring cleaning usually includes two stages. First, throw out all the things you absolutely cannot hang on to, like clothes that no longer fit and food that has grown mould. For a South African Test team which had just lost Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis those discardables were abstract concepts like insecurity and doubt. They got rid of them as they showed with their victory in Galle. Then look at everything else and decide what is nearing the end of its run and is better more..

Dr. Subramaniam Swamy, the self-proclaimed Indian emissary

July 28 (CT) The month of July is spiritually a significant month in the Hindu calendar, as the festivals in several Hindu temples take place in July throughout the island. The most significant of all Hindu temple festivals in the island is the 'Vel Cart' Festival in Colombo which is conducted annually by the South Indian origin Tamil Nattukottai Chettiar community who are considered as the pioneers in banking in the island. The Chettiars are the traditional money lenders in South India and more..

DCD in Poson dansala ice cream: Too many holes in

July 28 (NS) Procedure adopted by the Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) to test ice cream for Dicyandiamide (DCD) has far too many ‘loose ends’ to be effective, Public Health Inspectors’ (PHI) Union claimed. Union President said while there was no question the ITI had experts and equipment to test for DCD, procedure they have adopted and lack of coordination with health officials had created confusion. more..

Korean businessmen help visually impaired children

July 28 (Island) The 23rd annual handing over Ceremony of Educational Equipment to visually impaired students in Sri Lanka, organized by the Sri Lanka Council for the Blind (SLCB), with the financial sponsorship of the Korean Businessmen's Association (KBA) was held on 25 July 2014. at the YWCA Auditorium, No. 07, Rotunda Gardens, Colombo 03. The KBA is collaborating with the SLCB for the 18th consecutive year to sponsor this worthy project through which educational more..

Combank chairman Dinesh Weerakkody steps down today

July 28 (ST) Dinesh Weerakkody, Chairman of Commercial Bank of Ceylon, steps down tomorrow in line with the Banking Act after completing nine years with the top bank, the maximum one can serve on a bank board. Mr. Weerakkody joined Commercial Bank of Ceylon as a DFCC Bank nominee in July 2005 and became an Independent Director in 2009, when DFCC Bank reduced their share holding to below 15% to be compliant with the new banking regulations. more..

Sri Lanka to host Global Rubber Conference in October

July 28 (FT) The rubber industry is gearing up to come under fresh spotlight this October with Sri Lanka selected to host the Global Rubber Conference (GRC) 2014. Recognised to be one of world’s leading conferences on natural rubber, 3-day international event will take place from 27 to 30 October. Last year the event was hosted in Palembang, Indonesia. Themed ‘Sowing the Seeds for Sustainable Future’, high calibre forum more..