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Police warn: Check vehicle papers

Mar 13 (ST) Motor vehicle registration certificates that went missing from the Motor Traffic Department (MTD) more than three years ago could still be in circulation and being used fraudulently, the Police Fraud Bureau warned this week. The warning came after a major racket in selling these certificates for sums varying from Rs. 5,000-100,000 was uncovered by the Fraud Bureau following a complaint by a vehicle owner who more..

Controversy Over Elephant Papers

Mar 13 (ST) A controversial situation has arisen at the Wildlife Department as accusations have been levelled against its Director General for defending an elephant owner who violated the Fauna and Flora Protection Ordinance (FFPO). Officers are up in arms against their Director General H D Ratnayake for misleading courts to defend an elephant owner who is at fault for keeping two unlicensed elephants more..

Azwer calls for COI to probe HR violations by Britain and others in SL

Mar 13 (DN) UPFA MP A.H.M. Azwer has asked Parliament to appoint a Committee of Inquiry to look into the human rights violations of the British and other foreign powers in Sri Lanka. Speaking at an Adjournment motion moved by him in Parliament the MP said the British Governor, Robert Brownrig enforced the scorched earth order to cut down all yielding trees, burn down all houses, destroy all irrigation systems and more..

Sri Lanka to host major Asian event

Mar 13 (CG) Sri Lanka will be hosting the next International Conference of Asian Political Parties (ICAPP) between Sept 18-21, 2014, with the opening ceremony scheduled to take place Sept 19. The preparations were finalized when the secretary-general of the ICAPP Standing Committee Chung Eui-yong met President Rajapaksa today. As hosts, Sri Lanka was requested to select the main theme of the conference, which was decided more..

Lankan tourists in highway collision in India

Mar 13 (TOI) An accident on the Yamuna expressway left four people grievously injured, while six others received minor injuries. The victims are from Sri Lanka and were on their way to Agra when the accident happened. The accident occurred 8km from the expressway's zero point in Greater Noida early Wednesday morning. The tourist group was travelling by a bus, which rammed into a truck ahead of it. more..

New Zealand's Fonterra in guilty plea over food safety violations

Mar 13 (BBC) New Zealand's Fonterra has admitted four food-safety violations following a botulism scare last year that led to recalls of milk products in China. Govt officials had filed charges against the dairy company, accusing it of processing and exporting dairy products which did not meet standards. Fonterra is also accused of failing to issue notification about its products not being fit for consumption. more..

President hands over 50 luxury buses to run on Expressways

Mar 13 (GDI) 50 new luxury buses were handed over to the Transport Ministry by the Finance Ministry expanding the public transport system along the Expressways connecting main cities. President Rajapaksa handed over the keys of the new buses to Transport Minister Kumara Welgama at a ceremony held at the Galle Face today. These luxury buses will be distributed among 50 selected depots. more..

'I saved govt from International Criminal Court'

Mar 13 (Island) Urging the public to vote the UNP into power at the PC Elections, the party’s National Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe said that the people including the armed forces had been given a raw deal by the govt. Addressing a ceremony at Sirikotha to launch the UNP’s manifestos for both provinces entitled, Bala Peraliyata Kola Eliya, Wickremesinghe said that nearly five years after the war had ended more..

Fishermen talks on March 25; no response from TN

Mar 13 (DM) The new date for talks between Indian and Lanka Fishermen had been fixed to March 25 on a directive of Fisheries Minister, Fisheries Department Director General Nimal Hettiarachchi said. The talks were to be held today, March13 but had been postponed. “We have decided on fisheries talks between Sri Lankan and TN fishermen on March 25 and we have informed them about the date, but still we didn’t more..

When the hangman refuses to hang on

Mar 13 (CT) This is one job in which hands-on training could be extremely gruesome and inhuman. On-the-job-training is very tough to install for each time a 'training session' is held, as it would be at the expense of a human life. Lack of qualified men and women for 'the job' is no strange phenomenon in this country. If one looks around, one sees many a square peg in many a round hole. Non-professionals are occupying professional seats; men and women least qualified for the job and more..

Monroe, Putin, Modi And Sri Lanka

Mar 13 (CT) The ascendance of Narendra Modi did not take the Rajapaksas by surprise. On the contrary, the Ruling Siblings did their best to reach out to the BJP. The 2013-visit to Sri Lanka, by a BJP-Shiv Sena-RSS delegation, even as saffron-agents of the Rajapaksas were stoking anti-Muslim fires, marked the apogee of this outreach. The Rajapaksas may have believed that their anti-Muslim image would suffice to build a bridge-of-commonality to a Modi-India. more..

Response to G.L. Peiris in Geneva: It is necessary the truth be stated

Mar 13 (CT) Response of the TNA to the statement made by Minister G.L. Peiris at the high level segment of the 25th session of the UNHRC on march 5th 2014 at Geneva. 1. Accountability and Reconciliation are fundamental to the restoration of Permanent Peace with Dignity, Equality and Justice amongst the peoples of Sri Lanka. 2. It is necessary in this context to set the record correct in respect of some issues more..

Sri Lanka stocks close down 0.3%

Mar 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka's stocks close lower for the fourth consecutive day with tobacco and diversified stocks losing ground and the rupee weakened amid stronger import demand, brokers and dealers said. All Share Price Index closed 19.58 points lower at 5,913.94 down 0.33%. The S&P SL20 closed 14.16 points lower at 3,222.13, down 0.44%. Turnover was 336.48 million rupees, down from 408.01 million rupees a day earlier with 74 stocks close positive against 84 negative. more..

Gale wants to build pressure in Sri Lanka

Mar 13 (YCC) ANDREW GALE wants to see his Yorkshire players put under pressure during their two-week tour of Sri Lanka, which started today. Captain Gale and his squad flew out of Gatwick to Colombo, where they will play unconfirmed opposition against both the red and white balls before returning to Headingley on March 28, just five days before their season opener against Leeds/Bradford MCCU. “From a team point of view, the lads are ready to get outside now,” more..

Video: Govt. attempting to grab PCs at any cost: JVP

Mar 13 (DM) JVP today met the Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya and complained about the election law violations being blatantly carried out by UPFA candidates. JVP front-liner K.D. Lalkantha said that the Govt was engaged in flagrant violation of election laws. “We met the Elections Commissioner today to raise concerns about this. The latest election law violation by the Govt is to carry out illegal electioneering more..

Woman arrested for killing newborn daughter, burning her

Mar 13 (Island) Dehiwala Police arrested a woman who had killed her newborn daughter, burnt her and threw her ashes to the Bolgoda Lake. Police are looking for a young man who had aided and abetted in the crime. The young man is said to have lived with the suspect woman. The suspect woman was a 23-year-old from Kandy and she had come to reside in a rented house at Waidya Road in Dehiwala several months back. She had been working at a night club at Havelock Town, Colombo. more..

Sri Lanka rupee falls to near 3-week low on importer dollar demand

Mar 13 (Reuters) Rupee fell to a near three-week low on Thursday on importer dollar demand in the absence of any central bank intervention. The spot rupee ended at 130.68/75 per dollar, its weakest close since Feb. 28 and down from Wednesday's close of 130.60/65. "There was importer demand in the morning and a state bank bought (dollars)," a currency dealer said. Dealers said the rupee was expected to trade in the range of 130.50 to 130.75 in the near future. more..

'Sri Lanka’s opposition to the resolution was a fight on a matter of principle'

Mar 13 (IL) Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe has said Sri Lanka’s opposition to the Resolution being moved by the US, UK and a few other countries against Sri Lanka was a fight on a matter of principle and that Sri Lanka would not compromise on it. Noting that what is happening to Sri Lanka today, could happen to any other NAM country tomorrow, he called upon all Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) member states to more..

Why Indian fishers cannot chase 'SL' fish?

Mar 13 (EAR) It is often argued, in the context of India-Sri Lanka fishers’ issue, that fish know no political/international borders, and fishers go where fish go. Taking off from here, it is also often proposed that a negotiated settlement to the decades-old dispute could be found through a cooperative venture involving fishers from the south Indian State of Tamil Nadu, and their ‘umbilical cord’ brethren from across the Palk Strait in Sri Lanka’s Northern Province. more..

Australians interested hanging?

Mar 13 (DM) Not long before the recently appointed hangman quit soon after witnessing the gallows, the Prisons Department said that it had received e-mails from two Australians seeking to fill the hangman’s position. “We have received emails from two Australians requesting for the hangman position. They have mentioned that they were qualified for the post. However, we won’t recruit foreign nationals to the position,” Prisons Commissioner General Chandrarathna Pallegama said. more..

UK to back probe led by OHCHR

Mar 13 (CG) Britain says it will back an international investigation on Sri Lanka led by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). British Foreign Secretary William Hague, in a written statement to the British Parliament, said that UK is working in support of a strong resolution at the UNHRC which calls for an international investigation. He said that further discussions on the text of the draft more..

Questions over baby elephant in Erawwala

Mar 13 (DM) The Wildlife Conservation Department today carried out a raid on a house at Gemunu Mawatha in Erawwala on information from the public that the owner of the house was in possession of five baby elephants without licences. However during investigations the officials found only one baby elephant in the garden. Owner produced a permit issued by the Wildlife Conservation Department in 2008 to keep the baby elephant. Owner claimed that the baby elephant more..

Power cuts: CEB blows hot and cold

Mar 13 (Island) CEB Engineers Union (CEBEU) President Janaka Aluthge yesterday assured there would be no power cuts despite the current shortfall in power output. Senior engineer said however, there might be power cuts in some areas due to already scheduled maintenance work or when a transformer tripped goes off and due to other technical problems. However, some other engineers said the CEB had decided to go for power cuts with effect from yesterday due to the CPC’s more..

Video: Two men lottery, says Harsha

Mar 13 (DM) UNP MP Harsha de Silva questioned the credibility and the legitimacy of the Oceanic Games, a casino license holder in Maccau that is supposed to commence an Online Casino/Lottery next month in Sri Lanka. “This company has been registered only recently (2012 August) with one share holder. Another foreign share holder has been brought in the same day. They are the only two people of the company more..

CEJ urges govt. to do more to detect kidney disease early

Mar 13 (Island) Centre for Environmental Justice (CEJ) urged the govt to facilitate early detection tests for possible victims of the chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology (CKDu). Environmental Officer CEJ, Chalani Rubesinghe said that there was a pressing need for more awareness programmes and facilities for early detection of the disease. Issuing a statement to commemorate World Kidney Day today Rubesinghe said that Ministries of Health, Water Supply and Drainage more..

Renewable power producers welcome flat tariff rate

Mar 13 (Island) Bio Energy Association welcomed the govt decision to grant a flat tariff to renewable power producers. Association President Parakrama Jayasinghe said that the govt decision would yield positive results. He cited the new 63MW and 5MW dendro projects as examples. He said he believed solar and wind should have been given much prominence. Last year, the  CEB planned to pay renewable power producers at reduced rates though the power sector regulator, more..

Cool cricketers assure no hard-line action

Mar 13 (DM) National cricketers who met with cricket officials at a special meeting yesterday had made it clear that they did not wish to make any threats or take industrial action but wanted Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) officials to consider their position reasonably and take steps to grant them a percentage of the debated ICC events income while the SLC officials had mellowed down their stance and agreed to discuss the matter further more..

SL-born man 'stabbed to death' in Sydney

Mar 13 (SMH) A real estate agent whose wife is expecting their first child has been stabbed to death outside his real estate business in Sydney's west. Police said another man had been charged over the attack on 48-year-old Vissa Esan in Pendle Hill about 7.45am on Thursday. Mr Esan, who owns Aussie Unity Real Estate on Pendle Way, arrived at work early on Thursday morning and was believed to be putting out the garbage in an alley that runs alongside his office when he was attacked. more..

Sri Lanka releases 24 more fishermen

Mar 13 (PTI) A day after a Sri Lankan court ordered release of 116 fishermen from TN ahead of the proposed talks between the island nation and India to sort out the vexed fishermen's issue, another court in Mannar today ordered release of 24 fishermen and their five boats. Fishermen were arrested by SL navy for allegedly crossing IMBL and fishing in the island nation's waters. Official sources said 32 more Indian fishermen were yet to be released from Sri Lankan prisons. more..

CTC eyes e-cigarettes as fears over kids rise

Mar 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka's Ceylon Tobacco Company, a unit of British American Tobacco said it was eyeing e-cigarettes as fears are rising in many countries of children being drawn into smoking through the product. Chief executive Felicio Ferraz told shareholders in the annual report that BAT had bought CN Creative Limited, an e-cigarette technology firm and set up a company called Nicoventures Limited to more..

1.5kg of gold dust seized from Sri Lankan national at Chennai airport

Mar 13 (TOI) Air customs seized 1.5kg of gold dust from a Sri Lankan national who arrived in Chennai from Colombo on Thursday. R Thiagarajan smuggled gold dust in tea packets after mixing it with tea powder. The seizure was made based on a tip-off that gold was being smuggled from Colombo. Officials monitored passengers arriving from an Air India Express flight and stopped Thiagarajan on suspicion. "He was carrying only a few branded tea packets made in Sri Lanka and more..

Ganeshan prepares for opposition rule in WP after March 29 poll

Mar 13 (Island) Leader of the Democratic People’s Front (DPF) Mano Ganeshan said that he was looking forward to an Opposition-run administration in the Western Provincial Council (WPC) after the elections on March 29. Addressing election meetings over the weekend in the Colombo and Gampaha Districts for which the DPF is fielding candidates, Ganeshan said that he hoped for a post election alliance among all the Opposition parties to teach a good lesson to the UPFA govt. more..

Femina Miss India 2014 holds segment outside of India

Mar 13 (FT) Touring the ancient city of Galle, Femina Miss India 2014 contestants yesterday expressed delight over Sri Lanka’s scenic beauty and the hospitality of the people. Of the 25 contestants, a majority of them are first time visitors and claimed to not have expected the neighbouring island nation to be as beautiful as it is and conveyed genuine surprise on the serene beaches, the greenery and the culture they experienced. more..

Sri Lanka approves US$3.6bn investments in 2013

Mar 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka has approved 3.6 billion US dollar equivalent in investment projects in 2013 including 1.3 billion US dollars from domestic investors. "Last year we have signed agreements worth about 2.3 billion US dollars (from investors) and on top of that we also signed 1.3 billon US dollars worth of local investments," Lakshman Jayaweera, Chairman of Board of Investment said. "I find that local investors are coming very actively now signing agreements with the BOI." more..

VIP restaurants in city above the law

Mar 13 (Island) Colombo City Public Health Department alleged that there were restaurants in the city opened without trade licenses. Chief of the Public Health Department, Dr. Pradeep Kariyawasam alleged that some of those restaurants were opened by well known public figures. However, the few international food establishments ensured that all required documentation was in hand including the trade license before operating. Dr. Kariyawasam said that obtaining the trade more..

JVP street drama troupe attacked

Mar 13 (SM) Nine persons have been injured in an attack by govt thugs on a JVP street drama troupe that has been conducting a public awareness performance at the Panadura main bus stand. Three of the drama troupe members are in serious condition, said JVP Kalutara group leader Nalinda Jayatissa, identifying two of them as Dharmasiri Perera and Samantha Silva. The 12-member troupe, of the Socialist Art Society, more..

How IPKF ‘kept’ peace in Sri Lanka

Mar 14 (NS) The background to the arrival of the IPKF is simple. On 26 May 1987, Prabakaran was cornered in Vadamarachchi and would have been caught by the Sri Lankan troops had India not intervened to threaten military intervention if Prabakaran was not released. Thereafter, Prabakaran was flown by Indian plane to India and to show India meant business, India violated Sri Lanka’s airspace dropping 25 tons of food in the North. The irony is that while no Sri Lankan more..

Who really raped Tamil civilians?

Mar 14 (NS) Garth Pritchard, a Canadian filmmaker who accompanied the forensic team to Kosovo said, “This was a massacre that never happened….I was standing there when the forensic teams were telling Louise Arbor there were no 200,000 bodies and she didn’t want to know”. Louis Arbor was the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. She was part of the ‘mass grave’ lie. Her successor is Navi Pillay and she is happy to continue the mass lies. Sri Lanka is the target and every effort more..

Garbage disposal: Compost bins to the rescue

Mar 14 (SO) Maintaining the Colombo city, commercial capital of the country, as a clean city was considered an arduous task for the city fathers handling the garbage problem a few years ago considering the 700 to 800 tonnes of garbage, daily collected from the CMC limits in the absence of a major solid waste handling projects and also garbage dumping sites to dump the garbage daily collected from the city. more..

How and Why Sri Lanka should argue that the UNHRC reject an external inquiry

Mar 14 (CT) Going by media reports it would seem that the US-UK is veering towards a clearer fore-grounding of a mandate for investigation of Sri Lanka by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, a position which would crystallise around March 15th or 18th in Geneva. During the bitterly fought end of a long war of national defence against the monstrous LTTE, individual elements of the Sri Lankan armed forces may have brutally transgressed, but national self respect more..