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Travel Lanka awarded Best Travel Magazine

Oct 4 (CG) Travel Lanka has been awarded the prize for the Best Travel Magazine in Sri Lanka, by the Chamber of Tourism and Industry, Sri Lanka. In its 21st year of continuous publication, Travel Lanka is the only regularly updated Tourist Information Book in Sri Lanka, recognized by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, and widely distributed in the country to serve tourists and stakeholders in the tourism Industry. With a vision to promote travel and tourism as a “way of life” while projecting more..

Crusading lawyers protest to Vatican

Oct 4 (Island) Lawyers For A Just Society has written to Archbishop Pierre Wgnyen Van Tot the Apostolic Nuncio in Colombo on Sept 30 that the visit of Pope Francis to Sri Lanka in January next year would indirectly help curtail certain democratic freedoms of the people in Sri Lanka. One of the conveners of this society Elmo Perera said that they understand that the Pope, as a matter of policy, did not undertake a visit to a country that was in the midst of an election campaign technically, more..

Champika pooh-poohs Fonseka's conspiracy claims

Oct 4 (AM) Minister Champika Ranawaka said that the Democratic Party led by Sarath Fonseka has ‘adopted’ an illusion that there was a ‘conspiracy’ against his party during the Uva PC Election. “In reality what happened was that they were unable to secure a single seat from the Uva Province”, Minister Said. He said that the Democratic Party was able to ‘collect a few votes’ in the Western and Southern PC Elections, more..

'SSP Rohana, four others to be promoted with eye on Presidential Election'

Oct 4 (Island) With the Presidential Election due to be held early next year, five senior policemen were to be promoted to the rank of DIG and five DIG’s over sixty years given extensions, the UNP said. UNP MP, Palitha Range Bandara said that the promotions and extensions were to be made shortly so that the officers concerned could assist the UPFA’s Presidential candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa. SSP Ajith Rohana was being rewarded for his loyal services as "govt propagandist," more..

Lara, Jayasuriya set for explosive Doha T20 action

Oct 4 (TP) In a huge breakthrough for the game in Qatar, cricket icons Brian Lara and Sanath Jayasuriya are set to lead unofficial sides at a T20 fixture in Doha on Oct 6. West End Park, in association with the Ministry of Youth and Sports, is organising the historic match which will be played under floodlights at the city’s brand new stadium. Batting legend Lara, arguably one of the best batsmen the game has ever produced, will lead the star-studded World XI while more..

Dr. Nonis claims he was unlawfully assaulted, which led to his resignation

Oct 4 (AD) Sri Lankan High Commissioner to the UK, Dr Chris Nonis, today confirmed that he has tendered his resignation, after he was assaulted by a Monitoring MP for the External Affairs Ministry (EAM). Dr Nonis stated that, as widely reported in the media, he was unlawfully assaulted by the Monitoring MP in New York on the 24th of Sept. “I tendered my resignation on the same day and returned to UK,” he said. more..

'Govt will never curb the rights of children'

Oct 4 (GDI) Prime Minster, D.M.Jayaratne says that the Govt will never curb the rights of children who are the future of our country but will appear for their rights. PM stated that, although it is said that rights of the children are being deprived, will always line up to protect their rights since it is a social as well as a national responsibility. Festival to celebrate World’s Children’s Day jointly organized by Catholic Unit of the President’s Office and Children’s Foundation for National and Religious Unity more..

Sirisena’s letter – a red light for Rajapaksas

Oct 4 (LT) It is reported that the Secretary General of the SLFP Minister Maithripala Sirisena has, in writing, asked the President why preparations are being made to hold a sudden presidential election when his term ends in two more years. The internal conflicts in the government have developed rapidly after the Uva PC election and many seniors in the SLFP have expressed opposition to holding a presidential election before President’s 6 year term ends. more..

Forgotten ‘heroes’ of the green hills

Oct 4 (NS) The plantation sector of Sri Lanka has been the most lucrative sector as far as the local economy is concerned, bringing in millions of rupees of foreign revenue. Sri Lanka is known worldwide for several reasons, its natural beauty, gems, the natural harbor in Trincomalee and most importantly, tea. The tea industry has a history of its own in Sri Lanka and continues to be one of the sectors that bring in large amount of more..

Australia Under-19s beat hosts by 105 runs

Oct 4 (Island) Sri Lanka Under-19s fumbled in the batting department for the first time in the series to concede a huge 105-run defeat to their Australian counterparts in the fifth Youth ODI played at P Sara Oval in Colombo on Friday. Off spinner Sam Grimwade picked up five wickets to reduce the hosts to 143 runs after Liam Banthorpe, Kyle Scrimegour and Jonte Pattison made vital contributions for the visitors to post 248 runs, their highest score of the series. more..

Why don’t women MPs make their presence felt in the House?

Oct 4 (ST) A previous analysis revealed that women MPs face a double problem in Parliament. The first is that women constitute a very small percentage within Parliament (5.8%). The second is that their total contribution in Parliament, at 2.6%, is much less than their weight. Is this because women limit themselves to just a few topics, or do they contribute well below their weight across the board? Women’s contribution is widespread: Of the 42 topics classified by more..

Sri Lankan designers showcase talent in resort wear collection

Oct 4 (Xinhua) Third edition of the HSBC Colombo Fashion Week Resort Show concluded Saturday at the resort town of Negombo, as Sri Lankan designers, both professional and amateur, took part in what is one of Asia's highly rated events. The Colombo Fashion Week (CFW) has proved to be the backbone of the Sri Lankan fashion design industry, celebrating its 11th year with the launch of its third annual show this year focusing on more..

Drug kingpin with Lankan links arrested

Oct 4 (CG) A drug kingpin with links in Sri Lanka and Kuwait was arrested by Narcotics Control Bureau officials at the international airport in Chennai today, while heroin worth Rs one crore was seized from his aide in Chennai. Based on information given by his aide Rasool Mydeen, who was arrested in Chennai with one kg of heroin yesterday, Amjath Khan was arrested today as he was about to board a flight to Sri Lanka, NCB Zonal Director Prem Anand Sinha said in a statement. more..

No right to interfere in Sri Lanka says MR

Oct 4 (CG) President Rajapaksa says Sri Lanka can deal with its domestic issues and the international community has no right to interfere uninvited. President had said this when he met the Sri Lankan community in Italy yesterday after he met Pope Francis to formally invite him to visit Sri Lanka next year, the President’s office said today. President said that by interfering in Sri Lanka’s domestic affairs some countries are looking at destabilising Sri Lanka and helping the LTTE to revive. more..

Modern rubber research lab to be set up at Ratmalana soon

Oct 4 (Island) The Rubber Research Institute (RRI) will set up a modern laboratory complex to enhance its research for greater innovation and development capabilities. RRI, Director Gamini Senevirathne said that the laboratory would provide facilities to all stakeholders in the rubber sector including smallholder community, large scale rubber product manufacturers, rubber based trading more..

All qualified teachers and principals will be promoted before 31st Dec

Oct 4 (GDI) Minister Bandula Gunawardena said that promotions for all qualified teachers and principals will be effected before the 31st of December, based on the recommendations of the Madihewa committee Minister Gunawardena said that the President has given specific instructions and the cabinet has granted approval in this regard. He made these observations participating in a ceremony at the Lumbini College in Colombo. He further said that the main objective of more..

Cabinet approves funds for uplift of State Universities

Oct 4 (ST) Cabinet this week approved several proposals by Minister S.B. Dissanayaka to improve facilities in higher education institutions in the country. These include a proposal to procure new Medical equipment for the Medical Faculties of Rajarata and Eastern Universities and the Faculty of Allied Health Sciences of Peradeniya University. These faculties were newly established and it is proposed to uplift their standards to the standards of other National Universities of the country, more..

Tamil leader Anandasangaree wants Indian model of devolution in Sri Lanka

Oct 4 (PTI) A veteran Sri Lankan Tamil politician has written a letter to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi backing the Indian model of “devolution of power” to solve the ethnic impasse in the island nation. “I am one who had been campaigning for an Indian model as an alternative to a federal solution,” V. Anandasangaree wrote to Mr. Modi. Mr. Anandasangaree, 81, is the leader of the TULF and a former MP. more..

Mobile phones, a boon or bane!

Oct 5 (SO) Over the years, food, housing and clothing were indispensable to human life. However, today the mobile telephone is invariably added to the list. Four decades after it was invented by an American, Dr. Martin Cooper in 1973, the mobile telephone has become a sine qua non. The mobile telephone was made available on a commercial scale only three decades ago in the open market. Since then, it has turned out to be one of the most sought-after devices. more..

Chief Minister by Remote Control

Oct 5 (SL) Whether Senior BGP leader Subramanian Swami’s plea that Jayaram Jayalalithaa should not be granted bail in the case where she was found guilty in a Disproportionate Assets Case and sentenced to four years jail and his appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to impose presidential rule in Tamil Nadu for one year come true or not, political analysts in Tamil Nadu say that the former Chief Minister will continue to be the de-facto ruler of the state for years to come. more..

'Political climate ideal for a Presidential election'

Oct 5 (SO) Minister S.B. Dissanayake said the overall political climate in the country was ideal for the Govt to hold an election and the UPFA should take the best election choice where they will be victorious. He said that the Presidential Election was ideal for the UPFA as there is no Opposition candidate who can pose a challenge to President Rajapaksa. Ranil Wickremesinghe will be UNP's presidential candidate and he more..

Treatment of animals; Govt must be condemned

Oct 5 (ST) Buddha proclaimed, “May All beings be Happy’, equating animals to humans. Hindus usually avoid the consumption of meat. Most Christians eat meat, but St. Francis of Assisi, whom Pope Francis has taken as his role model, is the patron saint of animals. The Native Indian chief of Seattle in his epic statement on the environment said: “The beast, the tree, the man, they all share the same breath – for what is man without beast”. Arahat Mahinda’s words to King Devanampiyatissa onf more..

Nonis-Sajin Saga: The good, the bad, and the pathetic

Oct 5 (NS) Two different assaults have shaken Sri Lanka in the past few days. One was the assault on a street prostitute in Ratnapura called ‘Batti’. The second was the assault on Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to the UK, Dr. Chris Nonis. The alleged perpetrators of the assaults are a police officer, and a MP. There are differing views regarding the assault on Batti. However, there is no excuse for such an assault. Incident had allegedly occurred in the first week of September. more..

'Jeyalalitha’s conviction will not change anything'

Oct 5 (SL) The recent arrest of former TN Chief Minister J. Jeyalalithaa and the stand India took at the UNHRC sessions in Geneva recently is a talking point among political circles here in Sri Lanka. While many are closely watching as to how Tamil Nadu will deal with Sri Lanka under its new Chief Minister, the direction the Indian central govt is taking on Sri Lanka has also raised a few eyebrows. more..

The soft and hard of diplomacy

Oct 5 (NS) It was reported that the United States of America had softened its stand on Sri Lanka. This was after President Rajapaksa met US Secretary of State John Kerry on the margins of the UN General Assembly. Jen Psaki, spokesperson for Kerry and the US State Department has since said that the US position on Sri Lanka had not changed. So it’s still hard. Not news, though. Psaki elaborates thus: ‘We would like our relationship with Sri Lanka to achieve its full potential. more..

Some hope for Jaya in Paradise Isle

Oct 5 (ST) My dear Jayalalithaa, I thought I will write to you even though I am not certain this will reach you because I understand your address has recently changed from the Chief Minister’s Residence in Tamil Nadu to a prison cell somewhere in Bangalore. We all heard about what happened to you, suddenly being dumped in jail despite being the Chief Minister in your home state. We were quite surprised because in this Paradise of ours such events do not occur. more..

'President Rajapaksa can contest a 3rd term'

Oct 5 (SO) Minister G.L. Peiris who is an authority on Constitutional Law, shot down claims that President Rajapaksa is not eligibile to offer himself for re-election for a third term, citing explicit provision in the Constitution. Referring to the constitutional amendment and the historic Supreme Court ruling on the 18-A delivered by a bench chaired by the then CJ Shirani Bandaranayake upholding the new law, Prof. Peiris said more..

Sajin vs. Nonis

Oct 5 (Island) The Sajin Vas Gunawardene – Chris Nonis encounter which grabbed the headlines last week has done no good to Sri Lanka. Even an allegation of that nature, that a parliamentarian with executive responsibility in the External Affairs Ministry had slapped the country’s High Commissioner to the UK, certainly makes us look a banana republic. Worse, Gunawardene was on the President’s entourage to the UN General Assembly and Nonis was also there in that context. more..

UNP in crisis even after Uva!

Oct 5 (Island) After the unexpected and very substantial recovery of the UNP in the Badulla district and to a lesser extent in the Moneragala district, one would have thought that the party would by now be brimming with confidence and preparing to give Mahinda Rajapaksa a run for his money at the forthcoming presidential election. Before the Uva election, confidence was building up within the UNP, and clear signals were given that the UNP would be fielding Ranil Wickremesinghe more..

'I had faith in Indian judicial system'

Oct 5 (SL) Jayalalithaa Jeyaram, TN chief minister, was sentenced to four years in jail on the 27th of September in a verdict in the disproportionate assets case. BJP leader Dr Subramanian Swamy said that justice was delivered because PM Narendra Modi did not influence the case and had allowed it to proceed independently. Swamy had been skeptical that the case would proceed independently considering the fact that more..

Opposition unity in disarray

Oct 5 (SL) Ranil Wickremesinghe, possibly feeling pleased with himself in terms of his party’s undoubted gains in Badulla, flew off to England to attend the Conservative Party conference – the last of the major party conferences for British PM, David Cameron, before the parliamentary elections in 2015. UNP loyalists point to a different side. They charge that the UNP leader, having secured hardly any real gain in Badulla, is now acting as though he has already won the Presidential Election more..

'A lot of emphasis put on physical fitness'

Oct 5 (ST) Lankan cricket chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya feels that it is time they place of a lot of emphasis on the aspect of physical fitness into the national team. Jayasuriya said “We will be starting our next leg of cricket with the arduous battle of wits with seven one dayers against England from November 28. From that point onwards there is non-stop cricket till the end of World Cup in April. This means physical fitness of individual players would mean a lot to us. more..

Marvan it’s all yours – but there are challenges ahead

Oct 5 (ST) Finally the Lankans have buckled their shoes and got their gear ready to go out and play along with Marvan Atapattu who is now Sri Lanka’s Head Cricket Coach in every sense of the term. For the past four years, he has been the batting coach, understudy and fill-in-the-blank coach running around with a hatchet hanging over his pale neck. Yet, the former Lankan captain and opening batsman took up the challenge and more..

'Preparing team for next WC more important than winning'

Oct 5 (NS) More than winning the series identifying and getting a squad of players ready for the next Under 19 World Cup was the key element for Sri Lanka’s stand-in coach Roger Wijesuriya. Sri Lanka completed a 3-1 win of the five-match under 19 one-day series against three-time under 19 World Cup champions Australia yesterday. “We had a squad of 25 players for the series and we played 22 of them in the five matches which is good exposure against a side like Australia,” said Wijesuriya, more..

Four records tumble, one equalled on day 3

Oct 5 (ST) The proceedings of the 30th All Island Schools Athletics 2014 which is now in progress at the Sugathadasa Stadium saw four more records being eclipsed and one equalled on day three. In the three days of competition so farten new records have been broken and one equalled. The opening day saw two new records being broken with four on the second day. The four new records to be established comprised of three in the track events and one in the field. more..

Politics of Intolerance

Oct 5 (SL) There are reports that the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) had said Sri Lanka should be a Buddhist state, and that there are some leaders who are Sinhalese ‘only by birth.’ The BBS also alleged that those in power had failed to safeguard the rights of the majority community and the religion. The Sunday Leader sought the views of respected individuals of the major communities in Sri Lanka in this regard. more..

No more new licences tolubricant entrants

Oct 5 (ST) The Ministry of Petroleum Industries has cancelled a decision to award licences to new entrants to the lubricants industry, amidst opposition by industry players, who say the market is already crowded, according to industry experts. “With 13 players operating along with all big global and regional lubricant players we are a relatively small market with a potential of 55 million litres per annum and the Ministry isn’t keen to grant more licences,” an industry source said. more..

SLIIT rallies for a worthy cause

Oct 5 (ST) Over thousand students, faculty and administrative staff from SLIIT, the largest degree awarding institute in Sri Lanka, rallied together on September 14 to raise funds to upgrade the computer labs of six schools in the Sabragamuwa province. Themed ‘Celbrating 15 years of Excellence’, this 5km charity walk from Viharamahadevi Park was organized by the Student Interactive Society (SIS) of SLIIT, the institute said. This annual event was aimed at providing more..

Softlogic gets Narahenpita Milco land for development project

Oct 5 (ST) Milco’s Narahenpita factory land is to be leased out to a rapidly growing Sri Lankan conglomerate for a mixed development project. The 13.5 acre land bordering Kirimandela Mawatha in Nawala will be handed over to Softlogic Holdings on a long-term lease basis. A senior Govt official confirmed the deal adding that the long term lease of valuable land and property was given to Softlogic on a project proposal more..

Blue Diamond’s Chinese boss pledges to turn round company

Oct 5 (Island) The new Chairman/MD of Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide, Mr. Xia Liqiang has in the annual report of the troubled company pledged to make it a world leader in the jewellery business. Liqiang who assumed office in April this year following the resignation of the previous management has told shareholders that Blue Diamonds had unfortunately posted a net loss of Rs.36.4 million in year ended March 31, 2014, up from a loss of Rs.26.2 million previous year. more..