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State universities selling degrees – IUSF

Nov 5 (CT) IUSF charged that degrees were being sold in State universities at exorbitant prices under the guise of external degrees. In the school education system, money is also being charged unofficially from parents and students, the IUSF noted. Convener of the IUSF, Najith Indika, added the degree in Arts at the Ruhuna University was being sold at Rs 67,000, while plans are afoot to sell the university's degree in management more..

'LTTE fund raisers going for each other'

Nov 5 (DN) “The LTTE fund collectors and managers are now fighting. Millions of dollars collected from the Tamil public and invested by the LTTE have not been returned to the donors or diverted to a good cause,” Head of the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research in Singapore, Prof. Rohan Gunaratna told the Daily News yesterday. Prof. Gunaratna said furthermore, the struggle for political power or money has led to many clashes. more..

Woman’s leg cut off and taken away

Nov 5 (DM) The left leg of a 52-year-old woman had been chopped off below the knee allegedly by her younger brother and his 20-year-old son over a land dispute at Dehigastalawa in Balangoda last evening, the Police said. The chopped off part of the leg had been recovered by the Police on a roadside in Balangoda. The victim, a librarian working at Balangoda, had been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Balangoda Hospital. The two suspects had been arrested this morning more..

No repatriation of those in death row

Nov 5 (CT) Contrary to Indian govt's belief and Indian media speculation, that the five Indian nationals, convicted on drugs charges and sentenced to death by a Colombo Court, can be repatriated, it has been found that this cannot be done, in terms of the Transfer of Sentenced Persons, signed between the two countries on June 9, 2010. Agreement states that there is no repatriation for those sentenced to more..

Transparency International condemns harassment of its Lankan chapter

Nov 5 (TI) Transparency International, the global anti-corruption movement, condemns the continued harassment of its chapter in Sri Lanka, including a growing number of death threats to the staff, and demands the govt investigate. Transparency International Sri Lanka’s work is centred on fighting corruption in Sri Lanka. To this end it has monitored elections, trained local govt officials on budget transparency and has run a series of workshops to train journalists how to uncover corruption in more..

'Won't touch Ram Sethu, will find viable alternative'

Nov 5 (PTI) Union Surface Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari on Tuesday said there was no question of demolishing ‘Ramar Sethu’ while implementing the Sethusamudram Shipping Channel Project and asserted it would be done without harming the environment. “There is no question of demolishing ‘Ramar Sethu’ (mythical bridge built by Lord Rama to reach Lanka) while implementing Sethusamudram Shipping Channel Project,” he told reporters after inspecting more..

Hakeem dilly-dallies on backing Mahinda

Nov 5 (Island) SLMC Leader and Justice Minister Rauff Hakeem has declared his party’s decision to back President Rajapaksa in the latter’s re-election bid will depend on the positions taken by other political parties represented in Parliament. Minister Hakeem said that the SLMC was closely watching other political parties. The minister was addressing an SLMC Ampara district group meeting at Addalachenai on Sunday. more..

Sudu Hura meets Maha Hura

Nov 5 (Island) British High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, John Rankin visited the indigenous Veddha community in Dambana, in the Uva Province. He met community Chief Uru Warige Wannila Aththo, and learned about the long history of the Vedda people and the challenges faced by the community as they seek to balance preserving their traditional lifestyles with the attractions and opportunities of modern life. High Commissioner said that he had been honoured to meet the community chief more..

'MR doing all possible to keep JHU'

Nov 5 (CT) President Mahinda Rajapaksa is making every effort to keep the JHU within the alliance, as they had made an immense contribution to the founding of the UPFA, Minister S.B. Dissanayake revealed yesterday. He was responding to a question posed by a journalist at a media briefing at SLFP headquarters. "Meanwhile, the proposal made by the JHU to the govt, to amend the Constitution, is a complex issue, and therefore we requires a lot of time to address it," he added. more..

Budget changed

Nov 5 (CT) PM D.M. Jayaratne presented an amendment to Appropriation Bill 2015, seeking the approval, of Parliament, to increase the govt's expenditure by Rs 356 billion and to enhance the borrowing limit, of the govt, by Rs 440 billion. Accordingly, the Bill titled 'Appropriation Bill 2015-Amendments in Committee' seeks to delete the words 'rupees one thousand eight hundred twelve billion two hundred ninety two more..

SL needs to steer through stormy waters

Nov 5 (DM) In 1976, Sri Lanka reached the peaks of its international policy and relationships when it presided over the Non-Aligned Summit. Some 75 Third World leaders took part in this highly successful summit, quite in contrast to last year’s Commonwealth Summit, which had more negatives than positives with the Sri Lanka chairperson not being willing or able to attend the opening of the Commonwealth Games in Scotland this year. PM Sirimavo Bandaranaike, who presided at the more..

SL on nuclear weapons absent in action

Nov 5 (DM) Sri Lanka’s foreign policy has recently been the target of much criticism and one can cite a litany of scandals and questionable departures from professionalism and our traditional Non-aligned stance. These are now overshadowed by the glaring lack of principle and consistency recently seen in the First Committee of the current UN General Assembly sessions where Disarmament and Security issues are discussed and voted upon. 155 govts, led by NZ, presented a joint statement more..

Can Ranil knockout Mahinda?

Nov 5 (DM) There is a lot of controversy about the so-called common candidate to contest the forthcoming Presidential Elections against the incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa. The unsaid theory is that Ranil Wickremesinghe, by virtue of being the Leader of the UNP, is the automatic choice. Ranil Wickremesinghe does not seem to have any friends or acquaintances in a traditional sense. more..

Flights disrupted, passengers stranded at Sri Lanka airport after strike

Nov 5 (PTI) Over 2,000 passengers were stranded at Sri Lanka’s main airport here for hours after several flights were disrupted due to a strike launched by employees seeking a salary hike. Four passenger flights that have landed at the airport were kept waiting for several hours as the jet bridges cannot be connected for the passengers to disembark as a result of the strike. The strike that was launched last evening more..

SLMC seeks clarification from Private Medical College applying for recognition

Nov 5 (ST) SL Medical Council (SLMC) which governs medical education and standards decided to seek clarification from the Malabe Private Medical College (PMC) on several “serious concerns” with regard to its application for recognition. The SLMC which met on Friday decided on this course of action, following a request by the PMC which comes under the South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) more..

Seeking answers on the day of the disappeared

Nov 5 (SL) As Sri Lanka commemorated the Day of the Disappeared last week, many of those who have no clue where their loved ones are continued to push for answers. Sandhya Eknaligoda, wife of disappeared political cartoonist Prageeth Eknaligoda, together with other mothers of the disappeared met with parliamentarians to present a poster calling for an end to enforced disappearances. more..

In Sri Lanka, education strives for a big win for everyone

Nov 5 (UNICEF) For most children, Sri Lanka’s universal primary education policies of the past 70 years have been a success. About 98% of children complete primary school, and the country boasts a 92% literacy rate, according to the Global Initiative on Out-of-School Children’s South Asia Regional Study. But what about the children who are not in school? Many of them come from the poorest of poor families. more..

Dilan alleges Sarath N. Silva, now playing a different tune

Nov 5 (Island) The SLFP-led UPFA lashed out at the JVP and former Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva for claiming that President Rajapaksa couldn’t seek re-election again. The ruling coalition insisted that there was absolutely no basis for their campaign that the incumbent President seeking a third term was unconstitutional. He asserted that had President Rajapaksa taken oaths after having secured a second term before more..

Sarath Fonseka permitted to visit Singapore for one month

Nov 5 (AM) Colombo High Court today granted permission to DP Leader Sarath Fonseka to leave the country for a period of one month to obtain medical treatment. Fonseka sought permission from the Colombo High Court to visit Singapore for one month. Judge Devika Tennakoon gave permission after taking into consideration medical reports filed by Fonseka's lawyers, and the permission was valid from today. more..

Fishermen fear major loss by EU ban

Nov 5 (CG) Sri Lankan fishermen say they will face a major loss, both by way of income and jobs, if the proposed EU fishing sanctions on Sri Lanka is implemented next year. Fishermen’s unions, speaking to reporters in Vavuniya, said that Sri Lanka stands to lose over Rs. 13 billion as a result of the EU sanctions while the jobs of 30,000 fishermen is also at stake. Herman Kumara, President, National Fisheries Solidarity more..

Mathews named captain of ICC Test team

Nov 5 (CG) ICC today announced its Test and ODI Teams of the Year, as chosen by a specially appointed selection panel chaired by the ICC’s Cricket Committee chairman and former India captain Anil Kumble. Angelo Mathews has been named as the captain of the Test side that also includes two more Sri Lankans in Sangakkara and Rangana Herath. This is the 7th time since 2006 that Sangakkara has been selected more..

Sri Lanka shocked at deadline flexibility

Nov 5 (CG) The Sri Lankan Govt has expressed shock at a comment made by the Office of the OHCHR, that despite a deadline by when submissions can be made to the UN led investigation on Sri Lanka, late submissions will not be rejected. Minister G.L. Peiris has told the Heads of Mission and Representatives of the main proponents of the Investigation on Sri Lanka by the OHCHR and High Commissioner of Australia, more..

The menace of liquor and Thithata Matha

Nov 5 (CT) It is a matter for regret that basic rules are ignored when issuing licences to the liquor shops, mushrooming liquor bars near religious places and schools goes unabated in the country. Appeals and calls by perturbed religious dignitaries and protests by devotees, students, teachers and parents have fallen on deaf ears. Last week a protest was made in Kandy about eleven liquor shops being opened in close proximity to the Temple of the Tooth Relic. more..

How the public service was destroyed by our politicians

Nov 5 (CT) These days there is much criticism about the Foreign service – a service which was second only to the former Ceylon Civil Service and consisting of outstanding persons of intellect selected through a competitive exam. Chris Nonis affair has shown how a bunch of thugs have taken over the once hallowed foreign service. But it is these public services that held the country together and allowed the country to command respect from the international community. more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

Sri Lanka rupee forwards slip on oil import bill demand

Nov 5 (Reuters) Sri Lankan rupee forwards fell Wednesday on dollar demand from state banks to repay oil bills, with traders saying the local currency may face pressure as imports continue to rise in a stable exchange rate regime. The spot currency was quoted at 130.90/131.00 per dollar at 0659 GMT compared to Tuesday's close of 130.90/130.98. Dealers said they were hesitant to trade the spot below 130.85, the central bank's desired level for the currency. more..

Ten year old Chinese donates toys, savings to orphaned Meeriyabadde children

Nov 5 (Island) A ten-year-old Chinese student of Colombo International School has donated ten of his toys and Rs. 2,000, being the amount he had saved out of his pocket money over the last two months, to children orphaned by last week’s landslide at Meeriyabedda estate in Haldummulla, Badulla. The student, Wei Haojin, is among 60 Chinese nationals in Sri Lanka have who contributed Rs. 4,882,600 as relief assistance. The donation was jointly initiated by the SL Overseas Chinese Association, more..

Ebola: Health officials to get training in India

Nov 5 (DM) A team of doctors and nurses will be sent to India for a special training on the prevention and treatment of Ebola infection in a bid to keep a tab on the deadly virus, Director General of Health Services Dr. Palitha Mahipala said. Dr. Mahipala said the decision to train a local medical team on Ebola was taken at the progress review meeting held on Ebola Prevention at the Govt Epidemiology Unit today. more..

Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.5%

Nov 5 (LBO) Sri Lanka's stocks closed 0.51% higher with the price gains of Commercial Bank and Lanka IOC, amid net foreign purchases. All Share Price Index closed 37.57 points higher at 7,358.46, up 0.51%. The S&P SL20 closed 15.86 points higher at 4,102.11, up 0.39%. Turnover was 2.10 billion rupees, up from 1.99 billion rupees a day earlier with 116 stocks closed positive against 74 negative. John Keells Holdings had off market transactions of 370.58 million rupees changing hands more..

Gota on importance of Logistics

Nov 5 (CT) Every little detail can add to the intensity of the problem said the Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. He was speaking at the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport International Conference held yesterday. He also emphasized the need for individuals to anticipate trends and be innovative when Sri Lanka was attempting to position itself as a maritime hub. Defence Secretary Rajapaksa does not normally share more..

Video: Ranil presidential candidate: Sajith

Nov 5 (DM) UNP Deputy Leader Sajith Premadasa said today the party had decided to field UNP National Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe as its candidate at the presidential election and there was no argument about that. “There is no point in arguing about who is going to contest at the next presidential election from the UNP because the party has taken a decision to field Mr. Wickremesinghe as its candidate,” more..

'Film on LTTE chief not against Nationalism'

Nov 5 (AM) The controversial film ‘Pulipaarvai’, which focuses on the murder of LTTE leader Prabhakaran’s son, will hit the screens on November 14. The movie, which revolves around Prabhakaran’s growth as the head of LTTE, contains scenes of his 12-year-old son being murdered by the Sri Lankan army. The release of the film, which was originally scheduled in August, was stopped by pro-LTTE activists, alleging that the movie depicted the LTTE in poor light. more..

Woman goes to Police over breast surgery

Nov 5 (DM) A 41-year-old woman had lodged a complaint with the Peliyagoda Police over a complication following a reduction mammoplasty surgery. The mammoplasty surgery is performed on women who develop unusually large breasts. The surgery had been performed by a doctor at a private medical centre in Malabe to reduce the unusually large breast of a woman. The surgery developed other complications later on, the woman said. The 41-year old mother of two children more..

Ranil nods for common candidate: Karu likely to contest!

Nov 5 (AM) In a major turn of events, UNP National Leader Ranil Wickremesnghe has agreed to make way for a common candidate fielded by the UNP at the forthcoming presidential election. At a special discussion yesterday which was attended by front-liners of party, Wickremesinghe, who earlier positioned himself as the presidential candidate of the UNP, has given his consent to field a common candidate at the election, more..

Sri Lankan undergrads do well at international Mathematics Competition

Nov 5 (Island) Sri Lankan team excelled in the 21st International Mathematics Competition (IMC) for undergraduates held in Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria from July 29 to August 04, 2014. Three undergraduates from University of Moratuwa and one from University of Colombo bagged one Silver and one Bronze and two honorable mentions. This was an annual event organized by the University of London and the American University in Bulgaria. The 21st competition was attended by more..

Sri Lanka launches shopping festival to attract customer traffic into retail areas

Nov 5 (LBO) Sri Lanka launched a Sri Lanka shopping festival or SLASH recently with an aim to increase customer traffic into retail areas multi-fold and attract hundreds of thousands of additional shoppers across multiple locations to create additional businesses for retailers organizers said in a media release. Organizers also plan to immense value for shoppers and provide business leveraging opportunities and competitive advantage to sponsors through the festival. more..

President seeks Supreme Court opinion on third term presidency

Nov 5 (AM) President Rajapaksa today sought the opinion of Supreme Court on legitimacy of his third term presidency. Supreme Court, subsequent to the President’s move, has ordered relevant parties to present written submissions before 3 pm on Nov 7. President Rajapaksa’s candidacy for his third term became a matter of contention with many parties voicing different opinions on the matter. more..

Floored Sri Lanka look to batsmen

Nov 5 (CI) Dropped catches, flat bowling, batsmen thrashing at balls and barely connecting: Sri Lanka's cobwebs stymied them on Sunday, but the time to bust open the broom cupboard and clean their cricket up is looming. Fans have largely been content to grant the team a little grace for the first loss, given the side's lack of preparation, but they will soon expect significant improvement, even if a series victory is some distance off. India are, after all, now Sri Lanka's most rivalrous opposition, more..

Dilshan confident of SL bouncing back

Nov 5 (TOI) Sri Lanka batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan is hopeful of his team's comeback in the five-ODI series against India despite a crushing 169-run defeat in the first game at Cuttack on Sunday. The Sri Lankans, chasing a mammoth 364 to win, were rattled by fast bowlers Varun Aaron and Umesh Yadav at the start of their innings and they never really recovered after that, eventually folding for 194, but Dilshan thinks that performance wasn't a true measure of his team. more..

Video: Koslanda shows importance of Digital IDs: Commissioner

Nov 5 (DM) The proposed digital Identity Cards would be the most efficient source of data in future and could be useful when providing information on people in tragic situations like Koslanda landslide, Registration of Persons Department Commissioner General R.M.S Sarath Kumara said. He said that there was no proper method to provide information on people when there was a disaster in the country. more..