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Swiss based firm to set up steel shapes manufacturing plant

May 24 (DM) Montanstahl AG, a Swiss based stainless steel shapes manufacturer is looking to establish a “green-field” project in Sri Lanka, which will be a 100-pct export oriented firm. Wolfgang Stumm, Vice President of Research and Development of the family based firm, is currently in Sri Lanka looking for partners and a location to set up the plant, which if implemented, will come as a BOI project. Accordingly, Stumm on Tuesday met with several potential partners in Sri Lanka more..

EPF may go bankrupt due to mismanagement- UNP

May 24 (Island) The 2011 EPF accounts which were presented to Parliament on Wednesday has only a qualified opinion from the Auditor General (AG) which indicated that he was not satisfied with the incomplete information that had been provided, the UNP said. Economist and UNP MP Harsha de Silva said that the AG by qualifying his opinion had clearly indicated that there were several unanswered questions in the EPF’s more..

SL elephants migrate from Canada to US

May 24 (WP) It was going to be a long trip, so the zookeepers packed well: 24 bales of hay, 200 pounds of grain and 10 bags of wood shavings, because there would be no restroom stops. They also brought a case of cantaloupes, a case of watermelons and 130 gallons of water. Oh, and two popcorn blowers as keepsakes. At the start of the Memorial Day weekend, Smithsonian National Zoo’s 60-hour, 2,400-mile elephant road trip ended in Washington on Friday morning after touching more..

Oshawa mom and tot missing

May 24 (DR) Durham police are looking for a missing Oshawa mom and her two-year-old daughter after the pair left their home on Thursday. Police are searching for 28-year-old Pradeepa Senthilnathan and her daughter Suruthika Senthilnathan and say they want to make contact with them to ensure they’re safe. Ms. Senthilnathan is from Sri Lanka and doesn’t speak English. She has no known relatives in the area or community ties and she has never gone missing before. more..

Govt. urged to raise taxes on cigarettes

May 24 (Island) In conjunction with the World No Tobacco Day, the Cancer Care Association (CCA) has urged the govt to raise cigarette taxes immediately according to the income level of the country as it had not increased the prices in keeping with requisite formula for the past 14 years. Every year on May 31, World Health Organisation (WHO) and partners mark World No Tobacco Day, highlighting the health risks associated with more..

New volunteer force commandant takes over

May 24 (SLA) Major General S.W.L Daulagala, the newly appointed Commandant, Sri Lanka Army Volunteer Force (SLAVF) assumed office on Friday morning during a brief ceremony, held at SLAVF Headquarters in Kosgama. A Guard Turnout and a Guard of Honour saluted the new Commandant in accordance with military formalities after he was welcomed on arrival at the premises. A brief religious ceremony, headed by Ven Galahitiyagoda Sumanaratana Thero invoked blessings more..

Jaffna uni students strike over death threats

May 24 (DN) Several students of the Jaffna University have reportedly gone on strike starting today and have not attended lectures in protest over death threats received by many of the students who took part at the Mullivaikal ceremony. The notice cites that the students have declared a two day strike from today to Friday due to the anonymous threats which many of them had received. It is unclear as to how many students have abstained from attending lectures at the University. more..

Chorus against Rajapaksa's visit grows louder

May 24 (Hindu) The chorus against SL President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s participation in the May 26 swearing-in of Narendra Modi as PM grew louder on Friday, with DMK chief M. Karunanidhi and PMK founder S. Ramadoss seeking reconsideration of the invitation. MDMK general secretary Vaiko met Mr. Modi and BJP president Rajnath Singh in New Delhi and made a fervent appeal that the SL President be prevented more..

Modi's oath-taking plans send strong signals

May 24 (DM) India’s PM-elect Narendra Modi, who won a landslide victory in the recently concluded election appears to be setting a nice example. He has invited all the leaders of South Asian countries, including the PM of Pakistan, to attend his swearing-in ceremony. Many foreign policy analysts were dumbstruck by this, as so far the practice has been to treat the swearing-in of a new PM as essentially a domestic matter, despite the occasional attendance of foreign diplomats stationed in India. more..

When people talk, great things happen

May 24 (DM) It has been famously said that youth is wasted on the young. George Bernard Shaw was quite clear in expanding on this, his quote. He defined the statement as derogatory when he said that “young people are brainless, and don’t know what they have; they squander every opportunity of being young, on being young.” Basically what he meant to say was that young people are not always aware of the power they hold to bring about change in their lives world they live in. more..

Schools in N&E in dire straits

May 24 (SL) In boarder villages, it is only a handful that continues schooling after Grade 5. For them, there is no money to buy exercise books or pens and no money to spend for the bus fare to go to Halmillwetiya or Kebithigollewa schools that have classes up to year eleven. When these children are compared with students in Colombo, they do not have any facility to continue their studies. No suitable chairs or desks nor more..

Whither the border villages?

May 24 (SL) For those in boarder villages off Kebithigollewa and Padaviya, the benefits of peace are slow in coming. For a community who found safety every night on a tree in fear of the ruthless killings of the LTTE, they are angry at the excessive development going to the North and the East by-passing them. They are critical of the post war development efforts made in infrastructure and livelihoods in the former war torn areas while more..

A highway dance by Hemal Gunasekera

May 24 (LT) It is reported that Deputy Minister Hemal Gunasekera had attempted to get a police officer to kneel down before him. The Deputy Miniser had travelled on the Southern Highway to paraticipate in Parliamentry sessions. The vehicle carrying him had been driven from Matara at a speed of 140 kmph. A police officer noticing the vehicle exceeding speed limits at Galanigama had reported it to Kottawa access. more..

Four mega road development projects

May 24 (DN) The Highways, Ports and Shipping Ministry will today commence four major road development projects estimated to cost the govt around Rs.15,875 million, in line with the Mahinda Chinthana accelerated road development program. Minister Nirmala Kothalawala said that these four projects have been initiated on the instructions of President Rajapaksa. "There is unprecedented development in the country's more..

Muslims lead presidential commission to mass grave alongside Batti-Kalmunai road

May 24 (Island) Presidential Commission to Investigate into Complaints Regarding Missing Persons has received a complaint pertaining to a mass grave alongside the Batticaloa-Kalmunai road recently. Having examined available information, the commission has decided to visit the site early next month to begin investigations. The commission’s chairman, Maxwell Parakrama Paranagama said that he had received more..

Newly constructed 'Padukka public Fair' opens for public

May 24 (MoD) President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared open the newly constructed public fair at Padukka today morning. Secretary Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa also accompanied the President during the occasion. President Rajapaksa made an inspection tour of the new public facility after unveiling a commemorative plaque to mark the occasion. The renovation work of the public fair was begun in January of 2013 under the more..

NFF hands over proposals to President

May 24 (AD) The NFF today handed over to President Rajapaksa the party’s 12 proposals for reforms, which were approved at its 2nd National Convention, for adoption by the govt. The proposals were extensively discussed while the President assured that he intends to further discuss them with the seniors of the SLFP. President further emphasized that he would never hesitate to take political and economic decisions more..

CPC suffers loss of Rs.105 billion

May 24 (Island) The losses suffered by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation since 2012 up to now amounted to Rs 105 billion, according to a document tabled in parliament by Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa. Document tabled in response to a question raised by UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake said that CPC had a capital of Rs 35,000 million and negative reserves amounting to Rs 240,000 million as at yesterday. more..

BJP ally to hold protest against Rajapkasa in Delhi

May 24 (PTI) Opposing invitation to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa for Narendra Modi's swearing-in as Prime Minister, BJP ally MDMK today announced a black flag demonstration against the head of the island republic in Delhi on May 26. MDMK chief Vaiko compared his situation to that of the anti-Hindi agitation launched by DMK under its founder, late C N Annadurai, in 1965, saying the Dravidian veteran had more..

PB to be removed as Economic Dev. Secretary?

May 24 (AD) Sri Lanka’s powerful Finance Secretary Dr. P B Jayasundera is to be removed from the additional post of Secretary to the Ministry of Economic Development, according to sources. P.B. Jayasundera, who is also the Secretary to the Treasury and the Finance Ministry, will likely be removed from the position of Economic Development Secretary, in the wake of his ongoing conflict with Minister Wimal Weerawansa. more..

Why isn’t the Western form of democracy effective in the East?

May 24 (FT) I have received a web response for my last article, ‘From Political Autocracy to Economic Autocracy,’ stating that sometimes autocracy is better than chaos of ‘democrazy’. I have heard this view many a time in Sri Lanka, citing examples of Eastern nations – Singapore under Lee, Iraq under Saddam and Libya under Gaddafi. Probably unexpressed examples were Zimbabwe under Mugabe, North Korea under Kim and Sri Lanka under Rajapaksa. more..

NGO tells Peradeniya Uni. not to hold exams for AHS students

May 24 (Island) Centre for Human Rights and Research (CHR) has written to the Vice Chancellor of Peradeniya University requesting him to rethink his decision to hold exams for the Allied Health Sciences (AHS) students given the prevailing turbulent situation. CHR Chief Rajitha Keerthi Tennakoon said in his letter that the university administration must attempt to evolve an acceptable solution to the issues faced by the students, with the participation of all stakeholders, more..

The life threatening waters of Padaviya…

May 24 (SL) Statistics show that the younger generation in the North Central Province too, is now prone to deadly kidney diseases, says Dr. Channa Jayasumana Lecturer in Pharmacology Faculty of Medicine Rajarata University. This situation has got worsen in border villages as the people living in this areas are still consuming the arsenic and heavy metal contaminated water according to Dr. Jayasumana. more..

A military coup in Thailand

May 24 (CT) On Thursday, Thai military staged a coup, taking control of the govt and suspending the Constitution. Military also issued a decree banning public gatherings of more than five people and blacking out the country's vibrant mass media. Coup took place barely 24 hours after the army declared Martial law following months of rival demonstrations staged by pro-govt Pheu Thai Party supporters and opposition democrats, who have camped in the city centre, holding tit for tat protests. more..

Minister’s secretary caught selling refuse tea

May 24 (LT) A coordinating secretary of a senior minister has been arrested for attempting to issue to the market a large stock of refuse tea. Mawanella Police on the 22nd seized the stock of 20,325 refuse tea from a store room in Mawanella town prepared to be issued to the market. 'Refuse tea' is a waste produced during the manufacture of tea. In Sri Lanka, about 4-6% of the total product of made tea is Refuse Tea. The refuse tea stored at No.160, Rambukkana Road Mawanella more..

Australia will push Lanka on LLRC

May 24 (CG) The Australian Govt has said it will push Sri Lanka to implement the recommendations of the LLRC and to engage with domestic and international stakeholders to advance an effective and transparent reconciliation agenda. Brett Mason, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs in Australia, in a letter to the Australian Tamil Congress, said that Australia will also continue to urge Sri Lanka to ensure that more..

Wellawaya PS Member assaults woman bank employee

May 24 (LT) An employee of Wellawaya Samurdhi Bank has complained to the police that the Member of Wellawaya Pradeshiya Sabha Ananda Wickremesinghe assaulted her and used obscene language to embarrass her at the bank premises on the 22nd. The victim had earlier complained to the Manager of the bank that PS Member Ananda Wickremesinghe, also an employee of the bank, had misappropriated bank funds. Ananda Wickremesinghe, who had come to the place more..

Former Chairman Ja-Ela UC challenges his ouster in SC

May 24 (Island) Former Vice Chairman of the Ja-Ela Urban Council, Eranga Dias, has challenged in the Supreme Court, the decision of the Returning Officer for Ja-Ela to appoint as the Chairman of the UC, Sri Sham Perera. Petitioner Eranga has explained that the previous Chairman Upali Arambawela was unseated from office consequent to the second reading of the Council budget for 2014. Petitioner, who held the post of Vice Chairman of the UC, was appointed as Chairman. more..

TNA demands de-listing of diaspora

May 24 (CG) TNA has called on the Govt to review its decision to list several Tamil diaspora organizations over alleged links with the LTTE. TNA leader R. Sampanthan, in a statement issued today has said that there is no evidence to back claims that the groups listed by the Govt have links with terrorism. While acknowledging the right of the Govt to take appropriate steps to counter violent threats to national security, Sampanthan said more..

Sri Lanka to witness meteor shower tonight

May 24 (NF) The world will be able to witness a meteor shower on Saturday. Professor Chandana Jayaratne, said that this rare occurrence will take place at about 1 p.m. Even though it might be difficult for Sri Lankans to witness the event during the afternoon, Americans and Canadians will have the opportunity to closely observe the meteor shower. Sri Lankans will be able to witness the meteor shower during the night. Meteor shower can be seen with the naked eye. more..

Common policy, more important than common candidate

May 24 (SM) It is a matter of distress that common policies are being subjugated while common candidate is being highlighted, says Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Thero. The dialog on fielding a common candidate for the upcoming Presidential election emerged following a set of policies complied by the Thero. However, currently the policies have been submerged and a different discussion has emerged as to who the common candidate is, the Thero said in response to an inquiry more..

Commando BF arrested over uni student murder

May 24 (SM) An individual has been arrested on suspicion in connection with the murder of a female university student, police reported. The woman was found murdered near a bus stop in the Elpitiya town. The victim has been identified as Bimasha Gayanithi, a 22-year-old residing in Thalgaswala in Niyagama. Investigations have revealed that the woman left her residence for Colombo at about 3 a.m. on Saturday. more..

CMC employee says council secretary was aware of his ‘assault’

May 24 (NF) An employee of the Colombo Municipal Council has filed a police complaint stating that he was assaulted by a group of security officers at the municipal council, with the knowledge of the Municipal Secretary. The employee stated that this alleged assault had taken place over a disagreement about a service transfer. Sumith Hemantha, who was subjected to the assault, served as an office assistant at the Municipal Secretary’s office at the CMC. more..

Nineties Tamil song fit perfectly in Disney film: AR Rahman

May 24 (LR) Academy award winning composer AR Rahman was pleasantly surprised to hear his 90s composition in the rough cut of Disney’s Million Dollar Arm. The song “Unborn Children” sung by K. S. Chithra and Unnikrishnan fell into the movie perfectly by pure coincidence. The song features during the end credits, showing the two young boys playing in their village. “When I watched the rough cut of the movie, the song was in it,” he said. “I asked them, ‘Do you want the song?’ more..

Modi must ask Sri Lanka President to cooperate with UN investigation: AI

May 24 (TOI) Indian PM designate Narendra Modi should urge the visiting SL President Rajapaksa to cooperate with UN-led investigation into alleged serious violations and abuses of human rights and related crimes committed during the country's civil war, Amnesty International India said. "It has been five years, since the war ended, but Sri Lankan authorities have failed to bring those responsible for serious violations and more..

Lankan film With You, Without you to release in India

May 24 (CG) Acclaimed Sri Lankan director Prasanna Vithanage’s Oba Nathuwa Oba Ekka (With You, Without You) will release in India on June 13 through PVR Director’s Rare. The Sinhala and Tamil-language film will release with English subtitles in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Pune and Hyderabad. With You, Without You features Indian actress Anjali Patil with Shyam Fernando, Wasantha Moragoda and Maheshwarie Ratnam. Anjali Patil won the award for more..

SL preparing new plans to tackle England

May 24 (SKY) Sri Lanka are are preparing new plans to tackle England ahead of the second ODI of the 5-match series in Durham on Sunday. Tourists ran into a vibrant emerging England side at The Oval on Thursday, losing by 81 runs, but Sachithra Senanayake says the bowlers will be better prepared for the hosts' deep batting line-up, not least Chris Jordan, who impressed lower down the order with some big hitting. "We have some plans, and hope we can give them a big fight," more..

Diplomatic privileges for Rathupaswala Brigadier

May 24 (SM) Brigadier Deshapriya Gunawardhana who commanded the Army battalion which murdered two school students and a youth employed in Colombo while firing at the Rathupaswala residents demanding for drinking water, has been appointed as the Military Attaché for Sri Lankan Embassy in Turkey. Following the objections rose regarding the Rathupaswala murder the govt had publicized that Brigadier more..

An adventure in traffic and dining in SL

May 24 (SJ) I just returned from a two week trip to Sri Lanka conducting a workshop for some of the forensic chemists at their Govt Analysts Bureau. It is part of a international program funded by our USAID. The point of this essay is not what I taught but about my observations about the Sri Lanka, its people and, because I am a foodie, its food. This is the first of several blog posts. Sri Lanka is an island just east of the southern tip of India in the Indian Ocean. more..

Readers’ generosity helps baby go home

May 24 (GN) Thumira, the premature baby boy, who was stuck in an Ajman hospital because his father could not afford to settle the bill, has finally come home after Gulf News readers stepped in to help. Gulf News highlighted the family’s plight in a story published on May 23 after which readers came forward to clear the remaining Dh30,000 of the Dh89,000 hospital bill. The baby was born at GMC Hospital on April 17, the first child of Nalin Rukshan and his wife, who are Sri Lankan expatriates. more..