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Shangri-La to invest US$ 250M ona third project Colombo property

Oct 13 (CT) Hong Kong based leisure firm, Shangri-La, which purchased 10 acres outright in 2010, has planned for a third project in Sri Lanka with an investment of US$ 250 million for an apartment complex in the heart of Colombo. Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardena said that the Shangri-La, which had almost completed its Hambantota project, had submitted a third project for approval. The project location was still unknown as the company was looking at a few lands and more..

'Give up Eelam; I will give up Executive Presidency'

Oct 13 (DN) President Rajapaksa said that he will never hesitate to abolish the Executive Presidency if TNA and Tamil Diaspora were ready to stop working for separatism and establishment of Eelam. President said that there is no other person other than him to abolish or change the Executive Presidency. “But the very people, who talk loud about abolishing the Executive Presidency are in truth reluctant to abolish it.” more..

Role models for education and child rights

Oct 13 (DM) Education was the subject of international attention last week with children’s education activist Malala Yousafzai becoming the youngest person in history to win the Nobel Peace Prize, while last Saturday the world marked the International Day of the Girl Child. 17-year-old Malala, who was shot in the head by a Taliban terrorist in October 2012 because she dared to insist on the girl child’s right to education, has today become a much loved international more..

Underdevelopment, Poverty & Public Health

Oct 13 (DM) The spread of the deadly Ebola virus in three West African countries, namely, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea has created a public health crisis in these countries and the virus threatens to spread not just to neighbouring counties in the region but to the rest of the world as well. This prospect has naturally alarmed the leaders of the developed countries, global institutions like the World Health Organisation and others, compelling them to plan and execute a concerted global response more..

NPC and govt in war of words

Oct 13 (SL) The NPC passed two resolutions last week – one demanding that the Security Forces (SF) vacate all privately owned lands and houses in the province by the end of the year, and the other, demanding that the govt hands over to the provinces, powers over land, as per the 13 Amendment (13A) of the Constitution. The resolutions were passed with all the TNA members voting in favour. more..

100 Undergraduate Scholarships for foreign students in 2015

Oct 13 (ST) One hundred foreign students have been offered full scholarships at Sri Lanka universities, in a fresh bid to promote local campuses, Higher Education Ministry Secretary Dr Sunil Nawaratne said. “The scholarships offered are for the new academic year and will be for Degrees or Postgraduate studies,” he explained. Scholarship recipients are from 58 countries including the US, UK and other European more..

Govt. draws flak for allowing PMC students to undergo training at state-run hospitals

Oct 13 (Island) Medical Faculty Students’ Action Committee (MFSAC) Convener Ranjan Jayalath faulted the Health Ministry for allowing Malabe Private Medical College students to obtain clinical training in govt hospitals. Jayalath said some students at the Malabe PMC had filed a case in the Supreme Court to get clinical training in govt hospitals as it was not available at the Dr. Neville Fernando Teaching hospital. more..

MR warns over Facebook politics

Oct 13 (DM) President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Saturday warned the parents on a move by certain quarters to drag the school children into politics using social networking websites such as Facebook. He said that the govt had received information about such attempts, which was raised in the Parliament as well recently and that he had ordered the authorities to initiate an investigation into it. President also requested the political more..

Boat stand-off case in Australian High Court

Oct 13 (AAP) A month-long stand-off on the high seas involving the detention of 157 asylum seekers on a Customs boat will be examined in the High Court. The case to determine the federal govt's power to remove asylum seekers from Australia's contiguous zone, just outside territorial waters, and send them to other countries will come before the full bench in Canberra on Tuesday. The matter centres on just one of the 157, more..

Indonesia, Sri Lanka joint efforts to tackle human smuggling

Oct 13 (Xinhua) Indonesian and Sri Lankan foreign ministers met here on Monday, discussing ways to stepup efforts in addressing human smuggling issue and boosting bilateral trade, which is targeted to reach one billion U.S. dollars next year. Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa met with his SL counterpart G.L. Peiris at Marty's office. Indonesian minister said Indonesia and Sri Lanka have similar problem more..

Will Maithripala be appointed as Prime Minister before presidential election?

Oct 13 (AM) It is in the grapevine among political circles that several senior members of the ruling party have requested President Mahinda Rajapaksa to appoint SLFP General Secretary Maithripala Sirisena as the Prime Minister, replacing D.M. Jayaratne, before the next Presidential election. The development came in the wake of the reports that Minister Maithripala Sirisena had sent a letter to the President urging him to more..

'Presidential election likely before Jan. 13'

Oct 13 (Island) The next Presidential election was likely to be held before Jan. 13 2015 the govt said on Friday night. Minister Keheliya Rambukwella, who is also the Cabinet Spokesman, when asked for a tentative date for the Presidential Poll amidst various time frames ranging between January to March being mentioned by members within the ruling UPFA, said that it might be held around mid January 2015. more..

'Govt devalued Legislature before judiciary'

Oct 13 (Island) UNP MP Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said that last Friday’s presentation of a Bill by him titled ‘An Act to amend National Authority on Tobacco and Alcohol Act No 27 of 2006’ was in line with a unanimous parliamentary resolution meant to have 80 percent pictorial warnings on the surface of cigarette packets. Therefore, the UPFA had no moral right to make a 360 degree turn, an irate Rajapakshe said. more..

Gifted by Sri Lanka, Bodhi tree at Sanchi wilting for lack of care

Oct 13 (HT) The famous Bodhi tree near Sanchi world heritage site is dying and wilting. Not being taken care of properly by the state government, the leaves of the tree looked withered and pale. Also, lack of water has killed most of the potted plants around it and the soil around this sacred tree has cracked. This Bodhi tree has grown from a sapling that was planted by Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa on Sept 21, 2012 more..

Hypocrites holding betel leaves

Oct 13 (Island) Promises, for politicians ensconced in power, are like the pie crust—made to be broken. The incumbent dispensation solemnly pledged, years ago, to fight alcoholism and introduced an ambitious programme, Mathata Thitha. But, its top guns get sozzled to the gills and shift the jaws of diplomats at social gatherings, urinate into swimming pools at hotels and commit assault and battery or even murder and rape. The govt also endeared itself to the public, especially more..

Govts are losing monopoly over economic statistics

Oct 13 (CT) Politicians love to show better economic performance pictures to their voters. The statistics-producing bodies of governments love to please politicians by generating exactly the reports which the latter would welcome. This joint manoeuvring should be checked by private sector institutions which have to act as a counter force. But in many countries, trade chambers love to endorse such massaged-up reports possibly they are more interested in winning favours from more..

Daily Mirror Cartoon

Sri Lanka stocks close down 1.9%

Oct 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka's stocks closed 1.87% lower amid banking stocks losing ground with the central bank’s guidelines on tax incentives to promote financial sector consolidation. The Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index closed 136.78 points lower at 7,184.22, down 1.87%. The S&P SL20 closed 95.47 points lower at 4,014.55, down 2.32%. Turnover was 1.97 billion rupees, down from 2.81 billion rupees last Friday with 23 stocks closed positive against 211 negative. more..

Fuel guzzling DG caught by Auditor General

Oct 13 (Island) The Director General of the Central Cultural Fund (CCF) has obtained fuel above the due allocation for his official motor vehicle and thereby fraudulently collected state funds, a report by the Auditor General has stated. The Auditor General has said in his report that the fraud has been observed in an inquiry for the period 2013 to August 2014. The official motor vehicle of the Director General of the CCF being WP Ks-1164. During the period the Director General has more..

Video: Abolish the executive presidency without elections: UNP

Oct 13 (DM) The Govt should move towards scrapping the Executive Presidency without holding a Presidential Election, the UNP said today. UNP MP Joseph Michael Perera told a media briefing that the govt should peruse a course of action to scrap the Executive Presidency given the statement made by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Sunday that he was ready to scrap the Presidency if those who called for the more..

SLMC repeats demand for Administrative district in the East

Oct 13 (CT) The SLMC will not accept the post of Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council until the govt acceded to the SLMC demand to create Ampara Coastal Administrative District in the Eastern Province. "We, the SLMC, are firm in this stand" said A.M.Jameel, SLMC councilors group in the EPC. Jameel who is also the Deputy Director of the SLMC International Affairs Wing in reply to a question that the govt is now prepared to hand over the post of Chief Minister of the EPC more..

Sri Lanka rupee weaker due to equity outflows, importer demand

Oct 13 (Reuters) Sri Lanka rupee ended weaker on Monday due to dollar demand for stock-related outflows and from importers, while dealers said the central bank's moral suasion prevented the spot trading above 130.40 and forced forwards trade. The spot currency was quoted at 130.50/60 per dollar, compared with Friday's close of 130.40/50. Dealers said the spot rupee did not trade as banks were reluctant to trade beyond the 130.40 level, at which the central bank had intervened more..

Asgiriya prelate condemns attack on HC Chris Nonis

Oct 13 (Island) The alleged attack on SL High Commissioner to UK Dr. Chris Nonis by MP Sajin Vass Gunawardana in a foreign country had brought discredit to the country internationally, Most Venerable Udugama Sri Buddharakkitha Mahanayake Thera of Asgiriya Chapter said. Prelate made the comment when UNP MP Ravi Karunayake called on him. He said that discipline among ruling party leaders had declined. more..

GMOA to help children orphaned by CKD

Oct 13 (Island) The GMOA yesterday said that neither the Health Ministry nor the Education Ministry had conducted an accurate survey on children whose parents had died of the chronic kidney disease. Therefore, it had in collaboration with the Health Ministry, Education Ministry and Principals of schools and class teachers in the CKD-endemic districts, taken steps to gather precise information on the schoolchildren who had lost their parents. more..

Sobitha, political parties in agreement

Oct 13 (CG) The leader of the People’s Movement for a Just Society the Venerable Maduluwawe Sobhitha thero has reached a consensus with some political parties and groups which met him today. The Maubima Janatha Party led by Dr. Hemakumara Nanayakkara and the Nawa Sihala Urumaya were among five political parties which met the monk today for talks. At the discussion it was agreed that all political parties should work together on one platform with a common agenda, more..

JVP condemns lowest allocation for education since independence

Oct 13 (Island) The fund allocation from Budget 2015 for education is the lowest since independence, pro-JVP Socialist Student Union says. National Organiser of the SSU and JVP Western Provincial Councillor, Dr Nalinda Jayatissa, said that according to the allocations made in the Appropriation Bill the govt hoped to allocate only 1.01% of GDP for the education sector for the next year. "This is the lowest ever allocation more..

Sri Lanka Tourism at JATA tourism Expo Japan 2014

Oct 13 (GDI) Under the guidance of Ministry of Economic Development, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau participated at JATA Travel fair 2014 which is considered as the biggest travel and tourism fair to be held in Japan. Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau has been participating for the JATA Tourism Expo for the past 20 years with the tourism industry members of Sri Lanka. This year, JATA tourism stand was constructed in an area of 108 sq meters with 18 SL Travel industry more..

Poverty stricken peasants demand food

Oct 13 (CT) S. Nanthakumar of the Trincomalee Urban Council has sent an urgent appeal to the Trincomalee District Govt Agent to resume issuing free dry rations to the displaced families from Sampur villages now being sheltered in four welfare centres located at Kattaiparichan, Killiveddy, Pattithidal and Manalasenai in Muttur DS Division to rescue them from death due to poverty. His urgent appeal follows an incident that had taken place at a welfare centre where a seventy more..

Video: Election illegal: JVP

Oct 13 (DM) Political forces should come on a common platform to oppose the incumbent President from contesting the Presidential polls which was illegal, the JVP said. “This is a completely illegal and unconstitutional move and therefore all democratic forces should oppose this attempt of the incumbent to contest for a third term,” JVP General Secretary Tilvin said. “We can’t keep mum when the first citizen violates the Constitution,” more..

Video: Derane Daruwo exceeds expectations

Oct 13 (AD) The foster parent scholarship scheme “Derane Daruwo,” launched by TV Derana on Sunday as the second phase of its CSR initiative Manusath Derana to mark the channel’s 9th anniversary, received an unprecedented number of pledges for donations amounting to over Rs 300 million. The project, aimed at raising funds to educate children of families affected by kidney disease across Sri Lanka, was intended to provide scholarships for 500 students. more..

Keheliya wants Sinhalese to learn Tamil

Oct 13 (CG) Minister Keheliya Rambukwella says the Sinhalese community should learn Tamil while in the same manner Tamils learn Sinhalese. The Minister expressed regret over being unable to speak Tamil like some Tamils who speak good Sinhalese. He noted that both Sinhalese and Tamil are the National language and so it helps if people can understand both languages. He said that his advice is that even parents encourage their children to learn both languages. more..

Strong protest against SAITM ‘clinical training’ in State hospitals

Oct 13 (CT) Anti- South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (SAITM) forces continue to show their disapproval to the setting up of the institute. Today, All Ceylon Medical Officers’ Association (ACMOA) will send a message to the Ministry of Health urging that SAITM not be allowed to send their students to State hospitals to undergo clinical training. Starting from the National Hospital, Colombo at 12 noon, the ACMOA more..

Fonterra welcomes clearance of Anchor batches by Health Ministry

Oct 13 (Island) Fonterra Brands Sri Lanka confirmed today that Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Health has lifted the temporary hold on the sale of three batches of its 400 gram Anchor full cream milk powder. This follows confirmation from the Ministry that its investigation and testing found no food safety or quality issue with the Anchor product. Fonterra Brands Sri Lanka Managing Director Leon Clement says the company had been confident the Ministry’s investigation would find more..

Sri Lanka A close in on big win

Oct 13 (CI) Sri Lanka A legspinner Seekkuge Prasanna continued to torment the West Indies A batsmen, increasing his match tally to nine wickets, as the visitors were left facing a big defeat in Hambontata. Despite a fighting fifty from Shane Shillingford , West Indies A were precariously placed at 267 for 7 at stumps, with a slender lead of 14. West Indies A, who began the day with their first-innings score at 96 for 7, lasted only 12 overs, as Prasanna collected 6 for 64 to bowl them out more..

Train service back in former SL war zone

Oct 13 (AP) Cheered by tens of thousands of people, a train decorated with banana plants and colorful flower garlands arrived in Sri Lanka's northern Tamil heartland on Monday, 24 years after the "Queen of Jaffna" was suspended due to civil war. President Mahinda Rajapaksa bought a ticket and boarded the train for the last 43 kilometers (27 miles) of the journey and opened several railroad stations along the way. more..

Ranil for friendly ties with all countries

Oct 13 (CG) UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe says Sri Lanka should continue maintain friendly relations with all countries, including India, Pakistan and China. Speaking to reporters after meeting the leader of the Janasetha Peramuna, Venerable Battaramulle Seelarathana, UNP leader said that Sri Lanka should not attempt to slam any country. He said that Sri Lanka needs to access the Western markets and also ensure the security of Sri Lankan maids employed in the Middle East. more..

'TNA’s interests lie outside this soil'

Oct 13 (DN) The much publicised boycott of the functions attended by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in the North by Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran to embrace the Tamil-diaspora driven political agenda at the cost of their people’s development goes to show that the TNA’s interests lie outside this soil, Sri Lanka Freedom Party’s Batticaloa organiser Arun Thambimuttu said yesterday. President Mahinda Rajapaksa is currently in Kilinochchi. more..

Basil inaugurates Pakistan housing project for war affected families

Oct 13 (AM) The ground-breaking ceremony of Pakistan housing project for the rehabilitation of war affected homeless people of the Northern Province was held in Puthukkudiyiruppu village of Mannar Town. High Commissioner of Pakistan Maj. Gen. (R) Qasim Qureshi, Minister Basil Rajapaksa, Minister Rishad Bathiudeen and Governor Northern Province Maj. Gen. G.A. Chandrasiri, laid foundation stone for the Housing Project. more..

Eastern province is to be promote as global natural and cultural destination

Oct 13 (LBO) Sri Lanka’s Eastern province, is to be promoted as a world-class natural and cultural destination by National Geographic Maps, to improve the contribution of tourism to local economic growth by promoting geo tourism. Implemented by the National Geographic Maps Division, a nonprofit scientific and educational institution in partnership with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, the project is being carried out in the districts of more..

Southern Campus of KDU to be established at Sooriyawewa

Oct 13 (GDI) The Ministry of Defence and Urban Development has proposed to establish the Southern Campus of the General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University at Sooriyawewa by further extending the services of the University. The aim of this step is to provide educational opportunities for the civil students in the Southern, Central and Eastern Provinces and for foreign students, The Southern Campus of the University is planned to be constructed in three stages more..