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Sri Lanka 2014: Repeating past mistakes

May 15 (GV) Our long-drawn out internecine war in recent history came to an end in May 2009 with the military defeat of the LLTTE. We thus had an opportunity once more, post-war, to address anew the underlying causes for violent conflict in our society, come together as a country and find ways and means to reconcile ourselves to our monumental losses. Prior to the military defeats of the JVP in 1989 and LTTE in May 2009, more..

Educating, empowering and involving youth

May 15 (CT) Prof. Rajiva Wijesinha delivering a speech at the recently concluded World Youth Conference said, "I am grateful to Aide et Action for this opportunity to speak to you, and even more grateful that they have engaged in a process of international consultation to highlight issues crucial for the wellbeing of youth. The document they have put together provides a clear and concise account of how the areas initially touched upon in the Colombo Declaration can be fleshed out meaningfully." more..

Largest tourism mart at SLECC next month

May 15 (FT) Fourth edition of Sri Lanka’s biggest tourism product mart, Sancharaka Udawa will take place in June this year attracting foreign sellers from India, Maldives and South East Asia. With potential to grow in to a large scale international event, much like the fairs local hospitality trade partakes in, in various parts of the world; the tourism mart brings together a large number of buyers and sellers and acts as a platform for stakeholder networking. Organised by Sri Lanka Association of more..

Drug threat looming large in resorts

May 15 (Island) A nagging problem faced by the tourism industry in Sri Lanka today is the ever increasing flow of drugs to the resorts, which if ignored would cause a crisis situation where tourist arrivals will be badly affected. A number of hospitality industry personnel said there was a smooth flow of heroin, cannabis, cocaine, babul and newer forms of narcotics smuggled in to the tourist resorts, specially in the coastal areas. more..

Aliya carries home first ever gold award

May 15 (Island) Aliya Resort & Spa has been recognized as a resort committed to Green’ and received the Gold Award in GREEN Rating System of New Buildings, from the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka (GBCSL), the recently constituted non--profit organisation responsible for Green rating buildings and Green labeling products. This award, the first of its kind presented to a recipient in the hospitality industry, was the first award to be accorded to the resort. more..

Touchwood investors meet again

May 15 (ST) The Touchwood Stakeholders Association at a meeting last Friday were scheduled to discuss key issues including the Interpol warrant for the Maloney’s and attempt to manage their own properties collectively. The meeting came ahead of the May 21 winding up case on the Touchwood Investments in the Commercial High Court. During the late-evening meeting, the investors were to discuss obtaining a caviat (freeze order) for every land or deed and organize themselves as more..

Within touching distance

May 15 (Hindu) India and Sri Lanka are within touching distance of each other— positively and negatively — in their tending of their democratic ecologies. A valid electoral mandate creates and celebrates a political majority. But, if that political majority has been gleaned not from political logic but from apolitical emotions, the democratic text gets grossly distorted by an undemocratic subtext. more..

'Lankan workers making major contribution to Korean economy'

May 15 (DN) The contribution of Sri Lankan workers to the economy of Korea is indispensable, some leading South Korean industrialists have told a visiting Parliamentary delegation from Sri Lanka. The Korean industrialists also said that Lankan labour is in high demand in Korea. Industrialists who have Sri Lankans in their employee ranks told the Lankan Parliamentarians that their workers are regarded very highly due to their efficiency and commitment, a SLBFE spokesman said. more..

Geneva resolution: Human rights and economic impact

May 15 (ST) Good governance is intrinsically good for the nation and people irrespective of any economic consequences. Nevertheless, if the govt fails to ensure law and order and protect human rights of her citizens, it would harm the country’s economy in several ways. This was the gist of the message from the LBR-LBO CEO forum on “Meeting the Challenges of a Resolution on Sri Lanka by UNHRC” on April 23rd. Although the Forum focused on the broader issues more..

Chamal to lay foundation for new prison

May 15 (CT) Construction of a new prison complex in Ereminiyaya, Angunakolapelessa to house inmates of the Tangalle Prison, will begin tomorrow. The foundation stone for the new prisons complex will be laid by Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa. The 400 inmates, currently serving time in the Tangalle Prison, would be shifted to the new prison compound once completed. The decision to shift the prison was made in 2012 more..

Nepal lose to Sri Lanka

May 15 (HT) Nepal lost to Sri Lanka 80-66 in the second match of their third SABA Championship here at the National Sports Council covered hall today. Nepal were trailing by just two points (56-54) at one stage of the final quarter, but the hosts lost momentum and conceded 14 points in the last eight minutes while scoring just six points. Nepal coach Dinesh Chandra Nakarmi said the players were nervous. “Boys were nervous to some extent. We were also weak in defence, more..

Sri Lanka more interesting than India for German investors

May 15 (ST) Sri Lanka, economy-wise, is looking much better than India (at the moment) and it’s far more ‘fun’ to do business here than in India, a visiting German trade official said. Peter Deubet, Indo (Indian)-German Chamber of Commerce Deputy Director General, also said that Sri Lanka is becoming an interesting place for German investments given the economic development, growth rates, improving infrastructure and a stable environment. more..

'The batsman has final score to settle with England'

May 15 (Independent) Recently won the World T20. Better Test batting average than Kallis, Tendulkar and Sobers. Only Bradman has more double hundreds. After 122 Tests and 362 one-dayers, there is not much left for Kumar Sangakkara to prove. Or so, you'd think. Why then, has the 36-year-old Sri Lankan, one of the modern greats, turned down the chance of another lucrative stint in the IPL, albeit a shortened one, more..

England v Sri Lanka: Selectors 'some way off' Lord's Test team

May 15 (BBC) National selector James Whitaker admits he is "some way off" knowing England's best Test team, less than a month before the first match of the summer. A new-look side will take on Sri Lanka at Lord's from 12 June following the departures of Kevin Pietersen, Graeme Swann and Jonathan Trott. "There are places available," Whitaker told BBC Sport. "I'm very open-minded." Wicketkeeper Matt Prior, 32, is not guaranteed a recall even if he proves his fitness, more..

More than 67danselas with unhygienic food detected

May 15 (Island) Unhygienic food served at 67 danselas had been destroyed on Wednesday itself, Public Health Inspector’s Association Secretary Senarath Bandara said. he said those danselas had been allowed to continue without serving unhygienic food. He said that they had inspected by yesterday evening 3,048 out of 4,850 registered danselas in the country. Asked whether they would prosecute the organisers for their substandard food items, he answered in the negative, more..

SL, Bangladesh MoU on drug export in June

May 15 (BDN24) Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali on Wednesday hoped that Dhaka and Colombo would put pen to paper during the upcoming visit of the Sri Lankan health minister. Maithreepala Sirisena is expected in Dhaka next month. The foreign minister said the text of the MoU for exporting pharmaceutical products and surgical equipment had been finalised. The foreign minister was meeting the outgoing Sri Lankan more..

HIV/AIDS strikes 51

May 15 (CT) Recent statistics reveal that 51 cases of HIV/AIDS positive have been reported from January to March this year, Director of the Health Ministry's National AIDS/STD Control Programme, Dr. Sisira Liyanage said. The virus commonly contracted through unprotected sexual intercourse, is more prevalent among the age groups 25-49 and 15-25, and most of the cases reported were from Colombo. "Our research shows that 95% of those who have AIDS have contracted more..

Wish you a happy and peaceful Vesak: British PM

May 15 (DM) The British PM, David Cameron issuing a Vesak message sent his best wishes to Buddhists in Britain and around the world celebrating Vesak, the sacred festival commemorating the birth, enlightenment and the passing away (Parinirvana) of the Buddha. “For millions of people it is a time to reflect on the Buddhist teachings of tolerance and compassion, and to make offerings to those in need. It is a special occasion that reminds us of the sincere more..

Indian help sought to recover money from woman human smuggler

May 15 (Island) Several Tamils have sought Indian intervention to help recover their money from a female human smuggler Thayapararajah Uthayakala, now in the custody of TN authorities for illegal entry during the first week of May, 2014. In a letter to the Indian Consulate in Jaffna, a group of Tamils has called for tangible action to enable the group to recover money collected by Uthayakala formerly married to an LTTE cadre, more..

Fast forward Vesak

May 15 (NS) Vesak is the day in which Buddhists commemorate the three most important events in the life of the Buddha, the birth, enlightenment and the Parinirvana (passing away). This day is therefore the most important day for Buddhists. In the Buddhist calendar, Vesak day is taken as the first day of the year. The Buddhists follow the lunar cycle closely. Each quarter in the cycle of the moon is called a Poya Day and each full moon day is a Full Moon Poya Day. more..

Moves to prevent soil erosion

May 15 (DN) A program has been launched in the Anuradhapura district to prevent large scale soil erosion. Experts have observed that resulting from unwarranted land clearing and devastation of forest reservations mainly for maize cultivation, soil erosion in the district is high. Agriculture Minister submitted to the govt that the lack of fertility in the soil due to non-ending erosion in the agricultural zones in the district, has affected the progress of agriculture development projects and cultivation. more..

Introduce special bill to circumvent court ruling -UNP tells Sirisena

May 15 (Island) UNP said that Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena could easily circumvent the Court of Appeal ruling on pictorial warnings on cigarette packets by introducing an urgent Bill in Parliament. UNP MP Ajith Perera said that the proposed Bill should contain what was in a Special gazette notification on pictorial warnings issued by Minister Sirisena some time back. Pledging the UNP’s fullest support to such a Bill, more..

President opens Bauddhaloka Mawatha dansela, Manning Market pandal

May 15 (DN) As the country celebrates Vesak, the Birth, Enlightenment and the Parinibbana of The Buddha with people making material offerings and engaging in spiritual rituals, President Rajapaksa shared the joys of the people by opening the Vesak Pandal at Manning Market in Pettah yesterday. President shared pleasantries with the large crowds that thronged the area. President also opened the Danselas at Bauddhaloka Mawatha and at the Diyawanna Oya. more..

Lankan refugees warned over LTTE

May 15 (CG) The Indian Coastal Security Group (CSG) personnel conducted a programme in the Keezhputhupattu Sri Lankan Tamil refugee camp near Villupuram in Tamil Nadu to sensitise the residents to security perception. Inspector (CSG) R. Sekar said that the camp inmates were advised not to organise any function to commemorate the death anniversary of LTTE chief V. Prabakaran that falls on May 18 and 19. The camp residents told him that they would not conduct such events as more..

Asgriya prelate urges Wimal not to leave govt

May 15 (Island) A 12-point resolution recently adopted by the NFF will be presented to President Rajapaksa with the blessings of the Mahanayake Theras. "If the President rejects the proposals we will take appropriate action," said NFF Leader and Minister Wimal Weerawansa presenting the resolution to Mahanayake Theras of Malwatta and Asgiriya on Wednesday. Most Venerable Tibbatuwawe Sri Sumangala Mahanayake more..

May Sri Lanka become the Light of Asia

May 15 (DM) With more pageantry than in previous years, pandals and lanterns, dansal and devotions, Sri Lanka is celebrating Vesak marking the birth, death and enlightenment of The Buddha. The outward show or spectacle, if carried to extreme levels, might result in excessive commercialization which for instance has resulted in the distortion of the inner spirit of festivals such as Christmas. The Buddha Damma, is essentially an inner journey and the gradual evolution or enlightenment more..

Rising challenges to the Buddhist world

May 15 (DM) The crisis facing the Buddhist world is neither a decline in religious conviction nor an apprehension that truth underpinned by rational argument and new scientific discoveries will one day overtake and outstrip the core teachings of its founder which is a perennial fear bordering on despondency that characterizes several other competing religions, but the lack of an effective institutional mechanism that can lend support when a Buddhist institution, Buddhist community or more..

'I am unruffled by Hirunika’s accusations'

May 15 (DM) Injured in a street shooting and recovered after hospitalisation, UPFA MP, Duminda Silva had his first media interview recently. Q: How is your health after the shooting incident? A: From the time I was injured in a shoot out many ordinary citizens of Colombo joined in invoking divine intervention for my speedy recovery. They visited Temples, churches, Mosques, Kovils and other religious shrines and joined in various more..

Unruly players and overzealous supporters

May 15 (SL) The impartiality of the match referee and the umpires at the annual big match between Richmond College and Mahinda College at the Galle Esplanade on March 22 and 23 has raised concern amongst cricket lovers. Match Referee Basil Perera and the two umpires Thilak Fernando and Ruchira Palliyaguru – an international cricket umpire – are alleged to have been biased at the 109th annual Lovers’ Quarrel in Galle as more..

Traditional lantern-makers find Vesak Zones grab their support

May 15 (ST) Reduced funds, a lack of sponsors and competition from organised groups mean there will be fewer Vesak pandals and lanterns in Colombo city and its suburbs with small-scale craftsmen driven out to look for work in other cities. These craftsmen say the setting up of Vesak Zones, exhibitions and competitions have resulted in declining crowds and funds for their creations, especially in the suburbs and rural areas. more..

Sri Lanka: Torn between yesterday and tomorrow

May 15 (DW) The civil war in Sri Lanka, which lasted for more than 25 years and claimed over 100,000 lives, ended in 2009. But as things stand today, the country is still bitterly divided and the reconciliation efforts falter. In May 2009, the Sri Lankan army captured the last of the areas controlled by the militant separatist organization, the LTTE. On May 18, President Rajapaksa declared that the civil war, which claimed the lives of more..

Dehiwala Zoo, hellhole for animals

May 15 (CT) The National Zoological Gardens (NZG), Dehiwala's beautifully landscaped gardens and waterfalls, together with its colourful birds and animals, attract thousands of people from all corners of the country. However, due to the alleged lack of experience by its veterinary surgeons and poor living conditions and negligence of some animals, this once popular NZG known for its exotic and rare species has today become a more..

Colombo 'failing to engage' with Tamils

May 15 (DW) Five years after the end of Sri Lanka's decades-long civil war, there are few signs of a govt-led reconciliation, MP Rajiva Wjesinha tells DW, arguing that mistrust and suspicion have only grown stronger. Shortly after the Sri Lankan army defeated the separatist LTTE in May 2009, President Rajapaksa declared an end to the country's bloody civil war which had lasted more than 25 years during that period claimed more..

Environmental group warns of move to sell water resources in Sri Lanka

May 15 (Island) The Centre for Environmental and Nature Studies (CENS) alleges that there is a sinister plan to sell the country’s water resources to multinational companies and the govt has already planned to draw around US $110 million loan from the World Bank for the purpose. Environmentalist and National Coordinator of CENS Ravindra Kariyawasam said that the Cabinet approval had been obtained through a more..

ADIC calls for pictorial warnings on 80% of surface area of cigarette packaging

May 15 (Island) Alcohol and Drug Information Centre (ADIC) stressed that it was unclear as to which size of the Pictorial Health Warnings (PHWs) was to be used under the precedence of authority, as the Parliament had unanimously approved covering 80% with PHWs, and the Court of Appeal had delivered a judgment limiting it to a maximum of 60%. Issuing a press statement ADIC mentioned that the scientific research more..

Dons to stage token strike on June 03

May 15 (Island) University teachers are scheduled to stage a token strike on June 03 against the Higher Education Ministry’s failure to provide solutions to their problems based on the agreement they entered into with the ministry in 2012 and the suppression of students. Executive Committee member of the FUTA Dr. Nirmal Ranjith Dewasiri said that the ministry had offered to grant them a research allowance as a solution to more..

Muslims slam anti-Buddhist video

May 15 (CG) The Muslim Council of Sri Lanka (MCSL) today slammed a video appearing on YouTube on which one Razeek blasphemed the Lord Buddha and Buddhism. MCSL says it vehemently condemns anyone blaspheming any religion or faith. It noted that in recent times Islam has been blasphemed by many including Buddhist monks. “Attention has also been brought to a video uploaded on to YOUTUBE in June 2013 more..

Losing Sri Lanka

May 15 (CT) The Buddhist flag flying over the Independence Square is symbolic of the anti-Lankan state the Rajapaksas are constructing, post-war. When UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay questioned the wisdom of flying a religious flag over a national monument, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa had one of his signature fits. He also claimed, mendaciously, that Ms. Pillay had objected to the DS Senanayake statue: “During her conversation with the President, she had referred to the more..

Pictorial warning not the be-all and end-all

May 15 (CT) Tobacco smoking causes, among other non communicable ailments, one of the most devastating diseases yet diagnosed in man - cancer. And there is no disputing that stark reality. The suffering and anxiety the disease causes to the smoker and his or her loved ones are beyond any measure. Although the habit of smoking has been cascading down centuries, though not always the butt we are familiar with no religion, govt, legislation or any other mechanism created by man has more..

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