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Australia helps Manthai West families

Oct 8 (CG) The Australian Govt through the High Commission in Colombo is assisting families in Mannar resettle after the war. In a statement today the Australian High Commission said that it handed over 44 newly built toilets to beneficiaries in resettled villages in Manthai West, Mannar. High Commission has to-date built 160 toilets in Manthai West for resettled villages in both Tamil and Muslim areas at a total value of Rs 10 million. more..

MR can’t seek SC opinion on 3rd term: Ex-CJ

Oct 8 (DM) Former Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva PC said the President could not seek the opinion of the Supreme Court on the constitutionality of seeking a mandate for a third term. “The President can seek the opinion of the Supreme Court on an issue of public importance, or to obtain an interpretation on the constitution. The latter could only be done during the course of judicial proceedings and not otherwise” he said. more..

Time to look to the future

Oct 8 (CT) This land was once divided by a cruel terrorist war. Now it appears to be politically divided in a manner most ugly, one party pulling the other by the leg on national issues. Political greed is given precedence over nation building and establishing unity. The unity we witnessed as Ceylonese, to some extent, is not seen as Sri Lankans over the past 42 years, since we became a Republic. The country has experienced two insurrections in the South while thirty years of that period more..

We must stand united as patriots to defend President Rajapaksa

Oct 8 (CT) Stability of Govt is a sine qua non for development and rapid economic progress. A classic example is Singapore. Singapore has been successful due to political stability. Lee Kuan Yew served as Prime Minister of Singapore from 1959 to 1990. In 1783, the Treaty of Paris left the United States independent and at peace, but with an unsettled governmental structure. Second Continental Congress had drawn up the Articles of Confederation in 1777, describing more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

In search of tomb of King Rajasinghe II

Oct 8 (Island) Department of Archaeology has commenced an excavation in search of the tomb of Rajasinghe II (1615-1687), the third King of Kandyan Kingdom, Director General of Archaeology Dr. Senarath Dissnayake said. The excavation is being carried out on a site in the Mahamaluwa of Vishnu Devalaya in Hanguranketha. Dr. Dissnayake said that there had been a lithic monument on the site which had later been destroyed during the 1980s to develop the Hanguranketha town. more..

'Depression moving away from Sri Lanka'

Oct 8 (DM) The Meteorology Department said today the depression in the South-east Bay of Bengal had intensified into a cyclonic storm and was expected to move towards Indian east coast. It said heavy rains exceeding 100mm could be expected at some places in the Western, Sabaragamuwa and Central provinces and in the Galle and Matara districts. Showers may spread to the North-Western province while the wind speed could strengthen over the island and surrounding sea areas, it said. more..

Should Colombo be preserved as it is?

Oct 8 (LBO) Sometimes, I get the sense that some people want the city of Colombo preserved in aspic. It’s difficult to believe, given the city had degenerated so much by 2010 when the regeneration work started. Some people protested the relocation of commercial plant sellers from Vihara Maha Devi Park (opposite NelumPokuna) to what is now Diyatha Uyana. During the 2011 local govt election, specific requests were made more..

STF arrests illicit fellers

Oct 8 (Island) Following a two-month-long operation in the Labugama Kalatuwawa forest reserve, the police Special Task Force (STF) has recently succeeded in busting a huge timber racket and arresting seven suspects responsible for felling many trees including Walapatta illegally. The suspects from Karadana, Eheliyagoda had pitched camp in the forest reserve and been living there to fell trees and saw them. The STF has also taken into custody saws, crowbars, axes more..

Parliament must abolish Executive Presidency

Oct 8 (CT) The abolishment of the Executive Presidency must be completed by a parliamentary process, not by entrusting it on the next president, JVP Provincial Councillor K.D. Lal Kantha said. "We can no longer entrust the office of the Executive Presidency on anyone, because we cannot trust a President. Election promises of the past, to abolish the executive system of presidency, when elected, were not carried out by the candidates who won," Lal Kantha said. more..

'Over 1,200 children have shrapnel in their bodies'

Oct 8 (CT) TNA MP Sivashakthi Anandan made a startling revelation that more than 1,200 schoolchildren, in the Northern Province, are still carrying the splinters from the shells fired during the battles in the region. "These children are psychologically and physically affected due to the war, which had dragged on for nearly three decades. A large number of children in the Wanni had lost their parents in the war and more..

President joins official inauguration of Sri Lanka Engineers Professional Association

Oct 8 (GDI) The Govt has changed the era in which priority had been given to destruction rather than constructions. He said there was a 30 year long period when Sri Lanka witnessed how the buildings constructed by the Engineers were devastated. How the A-9 Highway, the Kankesanthurai Sugar Factory, the Central Bank and the Kolonnawa Fuel tank complex were destroyed. Another era witnessed how the so-called revolutionaries devastated transformers. more..

Land around tree planted by Che to be made a park

Oct 8 (Island) A section of the Yahala Kele Rubber Estate at Moragahahena in Horana, where Che Guevara planted a mahogany tree when he visited Sri Lanka in 1959 would be named Che Park at 3.00 pm today, JVP youth wing leader and former MP Bimal Ratnayake said yesterday. Che Park would be declared open to mark the Che Day (Oct 08) celebrated by the members of the JVP’s Socialist Youth Union of which Ratnayake is the National Organiser. more..

Railway strike: Night mails cancelled

Oct 8 (DM) All the night mail trains leaving to Badulla, Batticaloa, Trincomalee and Palai and return trains have been cancelled due to the planned trade union action by the Professional Railway Trade Union Alliance (PRTUA) from midnight today, Raiway Control Room said. PRTUA said yesterday it would resort to an island wide strike action from midnight because the authorities had failed to fulfill their demands. more..

Rainfall slams South Western belt

Oct 8 (CT) The unexpected heavy rainfall experienced yesterday will continue in the next few days, due to a depression in the South Eastern part of the Bay of Bengal, the Department of Meteorology said yesterday. The impact of the rain was mainly in the South Western parts of the island. But, the rains did not fall in the Northern, North Central, North-Western and Eastern parts of the country, now being prepared for the Maha season rice cultivation. The heavy rains experienced in Colombo and more..

HRCSL and COI to collaborate on probe

Oct 8 (CG) The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) will meet members of the Presidential Commission of inquiry (COI) to investigate alleged abduction or disappearances of persons resident in the North and East tomorrow at the Head Office of Human Rights Commission. The discussion will focus on how to enhance the mandate of HRCSL with the Disappearance Commission as part of reconciliation process, HRCSL said. more..

Police searching for seven missing athletes

Oct 8 (Reuters) Police are searching for seven athletes who have gone missing from their Asian Games delegations and are thought to be looking for work illegally in South Korea. Incheon police said on Wednesday they were looking for three athletes from Nepal, two from Sri Lanka and one each from Bangladesh and Palestine. The delegations reported the athletes missing to Incheon Asian Games organizers (IAGOC), who more..

Open forum of experts to decide best food for kidney patients

Oct 8 (Island) GMOA said it in collaboration with the Indigenous Medicine (Ayurveda Medicine) experts, Western Medicine experts, Agriculture Ministry, Science and Technology Ministry and Food Consultants, would hold an open forum in Colombo to decide on the best food for CKD patients. GMOA Assistant Secretary Dr. Nalinda Herath said that the forum would be held at Sawsiripaya on Oct. 9. Food was responsible for the high incidence of many non-communicable diseases among people, more..

Gang members arrested for Mannar kidnapping

Oct 8 (Island) The Colombo Crime Division (CCD) has recently arrested the members of an organised criminal gang responsible for abducting a youth from Mannar, taking him to Singapore and demanding a ransom of Rs. 5 mn from his parents living in Sri Lanka. The abductors were taken into custody following a complaint lodged with the IGP by the victim’s parents. Investigations have revealed that the victim is a school leaver and the mastermind of the racket, known as Subraamaniam, more..

Video: SF may contest presidential election

Oct 8 (DM) Leader of DP Sarath Fonseka today said he would consider contesting at the Presidential Election, but would weigh all available options. He also said UNP National Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe had requested him to support the UNP in future elections. “If President Rajapaksa decided to contest at the Presidential Election again, we may not contest as he has no legal right or moral right more..

BBS to talk to UNP

Oct 8 (CT) Whilst calling for the abolishment of the 13th Amendment, the BBS said they would be entering into conditional discussions, regarding their policies, based on a national agenda. with the UNP. We support any level of devolution of power as long as it is for the people at the lower, grassroots level, in a manner similar to the "panchayati raj" in India, with democratization of institutions and devolutionary mechanisms being of prime concern, BBS CEO Dr. Dilanthe Withanage said. more..

Concern over Sri Lanka arresting fishermen in snag-hit boats

Oct 8 (IANS) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam on Wednesday expressed concern over Sri Lanka arresting Indian fishermen in snag-hit boats and urged Delhi to discuss it with the island nation. In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the text of which was released to the media, Panneerselvam said, "This new trend of apprehending fishermen in boats that develop mechanical snag by the Sri Lankan Navy is a matter of concern for my government." more..

Indian Hindu nationalists say 'no' to alliance with radical Sri Lankan Buddhists

Oct 8 (UCAN) An Indian Hindu nationalist group said that it has no intention of forming an alliance with a hardline Buddhist group in Sri Lanka. Radical Sri Lankan Buddhist organization BBS on Tuesday said it was in “high-level” talks with India's Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a Hindu nationalist group linked to India's ruling party. Both groups are viewed as hostile toward minority Muslims in their respective countries. more..

TNA, SLMC accused of pursuing a Western sponsored agenda inimical to Sri Lanka

Oct 8 (Island) The National Freedom Front (NFF) yesterday alleged that an alliance between the five-party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) and UPFA constituent, the SLMC could cause a debilitating setback to post-war national reconciliation process. Former JVP MP and NFF spokesman Mohammed Muzammil said that Western powers had convinced the TNA, which gave political leadership to the LTTE that eelam could be achieved though they failed in the task on the battlefield. more..

Pakistan to build 220 houses for homeless Sri Lankans in Mannar and Nanattan

Oct 8 (PHC) Pakistan has initiated a housing project to assist Sri Lanka in the rehabilitation of war affected homeless people of the Northern Province. In this regard, the High Commissioner of Pakistan Maj. Gen. (R) Qasim Qureshi, handed over a cheque of US $ One Million to Minister Basil Rajapaksa at the Temple Trees in the presence of Minister Rishad Bathiudeen. Both honourable Ministers greatly appreciated the friendly gesture by the Government of Pakistan. more..

Bowl within the rules, Murali urges bowlers

Oct 8 (AFP) Sri Lanka's world record holder Muttiah Muralitharan, once called for chucking during his controversial career, Wednesday urged bowlers around the world to bowl within the rules or else change their actions. The 42-year-old joined the debate whether the process adopted by the ICC in its crackdown on bowlers with suspect actions will diminish the art of spin bowling, a craft which fetched him 800 wickets in Tests and more..

NWP: 216 schools without water

Oct 8 (Island) Chief Minister of Northwestern Province Dayasiri Jayasekera said that 216 schools in his province were without water. Jayasekera, who is also the Education Minister of the Province, said that students faced numerous problems without water not only for drinking but for sanitary needs as well. He said students had no way of using toilets at those schools for want of water. There were 2,146 schools in the province and all the schools which lacked water were under the PC. more..

Lectures suspended at Arts Faculty

Oct 8 (CT) Chaos erupted at the Colombo University yesterday resulting in the temporary suspension of lectures and academic work at the Arts Faculty. In the ensuing pandemonium, it is reported that fourth year students have brutally harassed first years whilst also subjecting them to psychological trauma. Dean of the Arts Faculty, Professor Athula Ranasinghe said the decision to call off lectures was made as, "second year students were found to be behaving in an uncontrollable and more..

UN committee denies judging Sri Lanka

Oct 8 (CG) The UNHRC today denied the assumption that it was attempting to pass judgment on Sri Lanka. Chairman of the UNHRC Sir Nigel Rodley said that the Committee was not in the business of judging countries and comparing them. He said that the UNHRC understands that there was a difficult conflict in Sri Lanka but that there still continues to be impunity and other concerns in the country. more..

Experimenting federalism in Sri Lanka

Oct 9 (CT) Though it is five years after the LTTE was defeated, Mahinda Rajapaksa-led govt failed to place a meaningful solution to the satisfaction of the Tamils as well as of the international community. On the contrary, Mahinda Rajapaksa & his siblings have achieved a systematic and calculated murder of innocent Tamils, which demonstrates genocide on different pretexts. Murdering innocent citizens is discouraged in religious teachings to defeat an enemy. more..

The common candidate conundrum

Oct 9 (NS) The 18th Amendment stumped those who thought ‘2 terms and MR is out’. It was a master move on the part of the regime. It made perfect political sense to ensure that the best bet remains eligible. The 18th Amendment, never mind its democratic-worth, was the equivalent of many amendments pushed through Parliament courtesy a massive majority obtained in 1977 (democratically) and extended beyond 1982 (undemocratically and for undemocratic purposes). more..

Improving Western Province education sector

Oct 9 (SO) Western Province which shares the highest GDP of the country and all other physical and human resources has always ranked first in all sectors in terms of development in the country. It maintained the highest reputation for its education among all nine provinces in the country and recorded the best results in school education as it inherits both physical and human resources in terms of education in the country. more..

Brutal police attack on Ratnapura girl and bitter reality

Oct 9 (DM) By her own admission, the ‘nameless’ young woman, who was brutally beaten in public by a police sergeant at Ratnapura, is a sex worker. The assault was luckily filmed by a bystander with a camera phone. As a result, the police had no choice but to interdict the sergeant responsible. Otherwise, this ‘incident’ would in all probability have been forgotten as many other ‘incidents’ which ruffle the fabric of Sri Lankan society. Ratnapura case invites comparison with what happened at more..

Gnanasara Thera’s mathematics

Oct 9 (NS) When election times approach, it is the nature of many political parties, groups and individuals to start their own number games. This is nothing to be alarmed about. It just gives the nature of the hopes, aspirations and sometimes the intent of the speaker. However, on some occasions, it just defies all logic. The claim that the BBS can ensure 5 million votes for a candidate who will represent Sinhala Buddhists is one such seemingly exaggerated claim. more..

Netting the big ‘fish’

Oct 9 (NS) TN Chief Minister and AIADMK Party Leader Jayalalithaa Jayaram’s conviction for possessing unaccounted assets and four year prison sentence imposed by a special court in Bangalore has drawn mixed reactions in Sri Lanka. Even some, who have openly celebrated her incarceration, pointing to her aggressive stance against the Sri Lankan govt and her anti-Sri Lankan policies, have opined that such a conviction more..

Organist from nowhere who became everybody’s accompanist

Oct 9 (ST) Becoming Sri Lanka’s best known organist and keyboard accompanist wasn’t handed to Neranjan de Silva on a silver platter. And having had to work hard to get where he is today, he is determined to make it easier for the generations that come after him. Neither Neranjan’s mother nor his sister is musically inclined, though his father did some recording, but he himself has been playing by ear since he was five years old. He doesn’t know where he got his gift from, but more..

A.M.A. Azeez: Founder of the all Ceylon YMMA Coference

Oct 9 (Island) The All Ceylon Young Men’s Muslim Association Conference is primarily a Youth and Youth serving Community based organization founded on April 30, 1950, which has rendered yeoman service to the community over the last 64 years. The Founder was Dr. A.M.A. Azeez, eminent educationist, efficient administrator, erudite scholar, visionary and community worker. Aboobucker Mohamed Abdul Azeez was born in Vannarponnai, Jaffna on October 4, 1911. more..

Slums going high-rise in Colombo

Oct 9 (CT) Colombo is to replace its slums with towers of high-rise buildings, and in the next six years the crime infested, poverty-ridden shanties would be no more. The question however, is whether the govt would be able to use these high rise buildings to solve the social, economic and political issues of the slums in a fast expanding city. Wellawatta Lakmuthu Sevana Housing Complex was declared opened by more..

Editorial: Cows and broken shoes

Oct 9 (Island) Indian PM Narendra Modi and his Cabinet have revealed their assets as part of the BJP-led govt’s Swachh Bharat (‘Clean India’) campaign. TN Chief Minister Jeyaram Jayalalithaa has been thrown behind bars for corruption. Several key politicians of the previous Congress-led govt are also being tried for a telecom scam. We are lucky that we have ministers who are not rich enough to buy even decent shoes. One of them found himself in an embarrassing position during more..

Big share deals by several company directors

Oct 9 (CT) There have been several significant dealings in the shares of their companies by the directors of several companies in the preceding days. Rule 7.8 of the listing rules of the Colombo Stock Exchange make it mandatory for the directors of listed companies to disclose such trades. Richard Pieris and Co director, Sena Yaddehige bought 25,615,215 shares at Rs 3.08 each on 30 September, in terms of an employee stock option plan — total investment Rs 78.8 million. more..